Wednesday, February 24, 2010

This was the last project from last semester.

I call it the Wind Energist.

People often ask me what my "design style" is and I have a really hard time defining or even deciding what it is. I think this look epitomizes what I love to do. Layered, wearable, versatile, with a splash of color.


Another look from last semester.

This was my first time working with menswear.

I created a layered look based on mid-1800s Mormonism. I wanted to include plaid in my design, as it is a fabric that was both popular and favored by Mormons at the time. I also wanted my look to reflect the
desire to dress for God and and to be ready for hard work and physical labor. I used red in my design because the color was banned in the Fundamental Mormon faith in the 1980s and I wanted my design to speak to an earlier time.

I knit the scarf myself -- the first knit thing I'd ever finished! And I heat-embossed a leather belt to say "Mighty & Strong" -- a classic Mormon phrase.

Hope you like it!


I made this swim suit last semester.

The assignment was to create a bathing suit from lycra and a "coverup." This is what I came up with.

Cocktail Dress

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Now that the mockup phase if over I decided to take the different components I had been working with to test fit and drape, and create a little cocktail dress.

I actually think it kind of looks like a bridesmaid dress for a fun summer wedding or something someone young and cute could wear to a movie premiere. Think Amanda Seyfried, Kristen Stewart, or Ginnifer Goodwin.

Wouldn't that be a dream?

Current Project - Evening Dress

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Assignment: Create an evening dress. The only requirement is that it be floor-length. Go wild.

Okay, here's my story. These pics are photos of a mock-up. I'm going to be using a plum-colored version of this MariMekko fabric for the design I actually turn it. I wanted to practice with the print, fit, etc before I cut into the fabric I'll really be using.

These are just some ideas I've tried out for the skirt shape. Not sure if I like any of them too much. Will do more draping in the morning. Try to ignore the top if you can, what you're seeing is just the corset base -- I'm going to drape some over that, too.

Let me know what you think!

Past Work - My Prom Dresses

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Prom is so much fun! I went all four years in high school. I'm not posting what I wore my Freshman year because I didn't make it myself. If you must know, I wore a black strapless knee-length dress with a hot pink sash.

The first photo is from my Sophomore year. I wanted to make something really wild, but with a formal edge. I got this tuxedo vest from the costume closet in at my high school. (Sorry, Mr. Shelby! I stole this!) The skirt is made out of lace, tulle, and organza. Looking at this photo kind of makes me laugh because it really shows how far I've come in my sewing skills... Look at that hem!

The second photo is from my Junior year. I wanted to wear something long because I had worn short dresses at the past two proms I'd gone to. The skirt of the dress is made out of crepe-back satin. Such a forgiving fabric to work with! And the top of the dress is felt overlayed on mesh. Yeah, I wore felt to prom.

The final photo is from my Senior Prom. This is my favorite prom dress. (That's me with my date, Trevor.) I think my sister, Maija, gave me the fabric. I'm not sure what it is, but it's amazing! It's a sort of iridescent orange/gold color. I offset the orange with a contrasting aqua velvet ribbon. I put a lot of work into this dress. The skirt had a look of layers and pieces, and sewing the neckline was something very new to me. I'm happy with the way it came out, but I wonder what would happen if I tried to make this dress again. I'm sure I'd get some better results.

Past Work - High School Collection #1 - Greek Gods

This is the first collection I ever created.

I created all the looks except for the two on the very right: that's my advisor Claudia and her design partner/my makeup artist.

From left to right:

Emma is wearing a dress inspired by Pandora. I was thinking about spring, freshness, and naivete. The fabric is a green satin-finish curtain that I bought at Goodwill.

Chloe models a dress inspired by Hades. Darkness, tangles, and mummy-like wrapping informed this design. It's made out of blue ribbons.

Ariana plays the part of Aphrodite, the goddess of Love. She looks nude --'nuff said. The fabric is velvet and lace.

Iris embodies Diana, goddess of the hunt and chastity. I wanted to design a young wedding dress. I used old white tee shirts, wide satin ribbon, and paper.

I'm in the middle wearing a dress inspired by Dionysus. He's the God of parties, so I created a short little '60s style party dress. It's upholstery fabric.

Next to me is Jennifer. She's modeling a dress inspired by by Iris, the rainbow goddess. To construct this look I used gray matte-finish crepe and assorted sequins and beads.

Samantha wears 'Zeus.' The fabric is a leftover set piece. It's black cotton with white corinthian columns hand-painted on it.

Nes to Sam is Teresa who is sporting a spring look inspired by Persephone. The top of the dress is a velvet pillowcase, and the skirt is tulle and faux flowers.

Lastly is Maile who is wearing my favorite look of the collection. The dress is constructed out of men's neckties. So much work and so much fun!

As you can see this collection is very elementary for me. There is little cohesion -- besides conceptually -- and the construction is questionable. Still, I love this mini collection because it was my first baby. Hope you enjoy!

The corset is finished!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

It's done!

Kind of. I didn't get the chance to put as much glass on the corset as I wanted to. I plan to encrust more glass and pearls onto it in the coming days.

John, my professor, also asked that I make a few changes. He thinks that it would look better without the waistband -- he thinks that it distracts from the embellishments. I really like it and I'll be sad to see it go. It seemed his real problem was with the bow at the back, so maybe if I found a way to remove the bow but keep the waistband, we could find a happy medium.

He also suggested that I change the shoulder straps from grosgrain ribbon to some other kind of strap. He said that it cheapens the look and that the white of the ribbon and the white of the pleather are different and that bothered him.

He seemed to be pleased overall by my work. I'm really happy with the result and I'm looking forward to developing it more.

Past Work - Geometric Design

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

This is another piece that I created in my sophomore year.

The assignment was to design and construct a look using only circles, squares and rectangles. We could not use any patterns to create shape and fit; gathers, pleats, tucks, etc took the place of traditional darts and curves.

I used only rectangles to construct this garment. I embellished it with circle cut-outs and different fun buttons.

I don't think I've ever thrown a dress together so fast. This look was due the week I returned from Egypt last March, so I only had a few days to sew. Because there weren't any real elements of fit, this was pretty easy to sew, so I spent the majority of my time top-stitching the waistband and cut-outs, and doing fancy French seams to keep the dress from fraying on the inside.

I'm really happy with the outcome. I didn't set out to create an evening look... But that's the way it came out, and I like it. I'm pretty proud of myself for working so quickly.

Here is Veronika modeling my gown in the Sophomore/Junior fashion show.

Past Work - Fabric Inspiration Look

This was the last outfit I made in my sophomore year. The assignment was to use plaid fabric to create an look of our choice.

I found this amazing diamondy, argyle-ish plaid at Urban Outfitters. They sell basically bolts of fabric for about $5o (I got this one on sale for about $20) and call them tapestries. I guess they're mean to be hung on your wall in your dorm room. I didn't do that, of course.

The look consists of a yellow crepe trapeze (or triangle) top, cuffed short shorts and matching jacket with duchess satin plaid trim. Modeling this plaid explosion is Lily at the Sophomore/Junior Fashion show.

Past Work - Band Aid Dress

Monday, February 8, 2010

This is one of my favorite creations.

I created this dress in my sophomore year. The assignment was to design a dress using any "non-textile" material. This means no fabric.

I created the dress using bandaids and only bandaids.

To construct the dress I stuck the bandages together with the adhesive stickyside to stickyside.

It took me a month to make it and I used over 3,000 Johnson & Johnson sheer breathable bandaids. I even made a little handbag out of the bandaid boxes to go with it.

Here you can see a close up of the back of the dress (including the zipper I hand sewed into it), me standing next to my work on the dressform during my critique, and Fumilaya modeling it in the Sophomore/Junior fashion show.

Corset - The glass work begins

Spent almost three hours tonight wrapping city class in tulle. Took forever and I don't have enough glass! I'll have to go hunting again tomorrow.

The corset is due in 2 days, so I'll have to finish it all up by tomorrow night. I'm really excited and I'm so looking forward to seeing it completed.

Corset in progress...

Saturday, February 6, 2010

I've started to cut and sew! I'm on my way...

It's very difficult to test fit on Eddie (my mannequin) because corsets are so fitted. A persons' body is so much softer than a dressforms'. There's no way to tighten a mannequins waist with a corset in the same way that a human waist would respond. I guess I'll have to find a victim to cinch into this thing to see if it works!

Now I have the press all the seams and make channels to insert boning. Pleather doesn't usually like heat so wish me luck in applying an iron to my corset.

Couch Cover!

Friday, February 5, 2010

I spent most of today making this couch cover. I got the fabric at Urban Outfitters. It was a twinXL duvet cover designed Alexander Girard. He's a cool graphic designer whose work was really popular in the 1970s. I guess UO is doing some reproductions of his work as he has been dead for 17 years... Hm?

Buying textiles at places other than traditional fabric stores can yield some very exciting results! Often you'll find better prints in better quality fabrics for cheaper. I got this duvet cover for $20 and I think I got a least 6 yards. I don't know that I could have found such a soft cotton with this cool of a design at a fabric store for less than $4 a yard.

I'm starting to feel a bit more satisfied with my apartment. I don't want to feel like I'm living in a "college" apartment with cheap ikea furniture and thrift store finds. Hopefully this custom couch cover will spice up "the room."

Corset Prototype

Here's a prototype (or muslin) of my corset design modeled Eddie.

Sorry for the blurry quality. I'm not mature enough to own a real camera.

In any case, I'm starting to work with the fashion fabric (the actual fabric I will use for this design -- for prototypes we just use muslin) for this design. It's white pleather. It's got a great shine and it looks really clean. I'm hoping the brightness of the white will be a good blank slate to offset the colors of the broken glass and pearls. The glass has a slightly blue/green color to it and the pearls will be pink, brown, purple, orange, and of course, white.

This assignment is due this Wednesday! Ahh! Wish me luck with all the handwork. Hope I don't cut myself or break my hands.

And the corset design is...

Wednesday, February 3, 2010
I decided to go with a more "1800s look" as my prof, John put it. Adding things like bows, ruffles, and lots of decorative details isn't necessarily my style, but since the assignment calls for a Marie Antoinette reference, that's what I'm gonna do! I'll probably "decorate" the dressing gown element a bit more to make it more decadent, but for now I think I'm pretty much set for the corset design. Bring on the glass!

The class presented our corset prototypes today. I had to do two because the first one turned about a bit lumpy, and just... wrong. John seemed pleased with it, though he went on one of his classic tangents about bathing suits from the 1950s and women with "like these negative A cups" on the beach. I guess you need to have "bodacious tatas" to fill out a vintage suit. Thanks for the tip, John.

Hope you guys like what I came up with!
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