Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Heating & Cooling @ STRUT.

Here are some additional pictures from the Strut show which feature the debut of my Spring Collection. Photos were supplied from www.osiphotography.com  I f you weren't able to make it to the show, it's not too late to contribute to the cause! All photo purchased from Onscreen Imaging's site, will go to benefit BasicRights Oregon. Thank you for looking and please visit my site: www.heatingandcoolingapparel.com


I just want to congratulate Jessie on her first fashion show.
People were out in force raising money, mingling, kanoodling and trying to figure out how the bar worked. I ran into Adam Arnold and Sharon Blair for starters. Adam had on a beautiful denim sports coat that sparked a good discussion on the appropriate uses for denim. And Sharon Blair was there in the VIP section.
In general the clothing being shown was alright, very little of it totally floored me but there were some highlights. There were some pretty good Boob flounces.

Popina Swim put on a pretty good show including this crowd pleaser.

There were a lot of Pendelton wools used in knit wear by Erhart which was occationally cool in concept but wound up with strange pooching, and stretching issues that you might imagine with that combo. Notice the pocket flaps on the guy in the middle, and the way they seem to stick straight out from his chest. There was one point where a girl took off her jacket and threw it over her shoulder exposing an unappetizing interior. Oh well.

And now what you all have been waiting for...
(And I have to appologize for the format of the photos because my camera died almost immediately.)
Jessie's line was a ton of fun. The girls shirts were all drapy or key holed in such a way that I was sure that we would see some nipple, especially after the Forecast show. However I suspect that there was some cunning deployed double stick tape. It was the opposite of a wardrobe malfunction it was a wardrobe success! There was a sneak peak of the senior collection pants.

Shown Here with a super cute shirt.
These were my other favorites.
Nice work Jessie.

Here is Susanna, Olivia, and myself enjoying the free photo booth.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Sewing angels

I have been exceptionally blessed in the sewing connections I have made in my life. In the last few months I have become more involved with my sewing and with fashion in general. I have been so grateful for all of the information that I have picked up over the years and the wonderful people who have kept me interested, stretched my sense of myself, and offered new perspectives into my craft.

My first paid sewing job was at Desert Vintage in Tucson AZ. Kathleen Lauth who owns it is a fantastic woman with a big heart and a great eye. She hired me within two days of my arrival and introduced me to the study of clothing history. She took my affection for vintages dresses and made me a fiend for the details of construction and dating. She keeps threatening to get a website but she hasn't yet so I can't link you to her. If however you are in Tucson you should definitely check it out.

Desert Vintage & Costume
636 N 4th Ave
Tucson, AZ 85705
(520) 620-1570

When I got back to portland I got a sewing job at Beckel Canvas. I learned so much about the nature of production. I learned the importance of creating a series of steps and refining them to create the most efficient sewing system you can. From Bob Beckel I learned how to work on industrial sewing machines. Being able to maintenance my own machine is a skill of almost infinite value. I learned how to work with the machines, taking what they had to offer and not fighting it. Skills that include sewing together two pieces of different sizes, round edges to straight edges, or both at once in thick fabric. I worked with many different types of difficult fabrics often on a very large scale with minimal tools and I can tell you that everything else seems easy after that.

Through Beckel I met a cadre of wonderful people who all love to sew.
Hannah whom you all know and love. She more than anybody helped me think of my sewing as an art and not just a job. She helped me feel excited about all of the different places I wanted to take my sewing. She has been a wonderful friend and a priceless sewing buddy. I will always be in her debt.

Taylor who, with her husband Travis did T-Rex. Her charisma and unfailing sense of fun and color were always inspirational.

David Rafn whom you don't know yet but when he breaks out he will take Portland by storm. To see his work you will have to come to the Art Institute thesis show. Which you should do anyway because you will get to see more of Jessie's stuff.

On the side all this time I was doing piece work for Amy Daileda of Daisy Rock. She makes a beautiful, high quality product. She dyes all her own fabrics and has a wonderful eye for textiles. I had a great time working with her and loved seeing the color and texture combos she came up with.

I have also worked with Jennifer Philip of Phillips Bridal. This woman is a power house of sewing. She can make dresses at a speed that will make your head spin. I once saw her hem a wedding dress in just under five min. Her speed is not at the price of quality, everything she does is beautiful, uncompromising, quality. She takes nobody's word as gospel and finds perfectly, cleanly, useful ways to do everything. From her I learned to not be timid and even the softest silks or most elaborate beading are just raw materials to be used in the same way canvas or shirting is. If you were thinking of getting married and buying a high end dress I would strongly recommend going to Jennifer with your ideas because you could get a better made, custom fit gown for less money. Take my word for it. I have seen the inside of all those gowns and her work out strips them.

I have also worked for Laglitz Leather, a place that makes very high quality custom leather motorcycle gear. Although I learned some about the construction of jackets and more about working with leather most of what I learned was what not to do. I can't underestimate the value of respecting your production stitchers. These were very talented women who had the capacity to make wonderful garments but the management had no interest in listening to them. Langlitz missed some very valuable chances to improve their quality, efficiency, and thus their bottom line. The people sewing your garments know more about how they go together and what it would take to make the operation smoother than anybody else in the system. If you ever manage stitchers, please ask them because I can guarantee they have a ton of ad hoc solutions to problems from earlier in the chain.

I would also like to mention Kathleen Fasanella of Fashion Incubator because although I haven't worked with her she has helped to shape my concepts of sewing. The frustrations I have had with the methods that I found in sewing books are not my own imagination. The fact that books have contradictory information is not because I'm stupid and don't get it. There is a whole community of people who also problem solve for a living and they have figured out many of these things. Her tutorials mean that I don't have to reinvent the wheel every time I sit down at a sewing machine. I would also like to apologize for anybody who might take my placket tutorial to heart. Please go read Kathleen's and then donate money. Its plain stupid to do it any other way.

I have intentionally left out Jessie because I want to do a post on her and the Awesome! show she put on last night. So that's coming next.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Forecast II Video!

Left to Right: Jordan, Me (trying to be shorter), Russell, Bruce, Joe (Who is responsible for this photo) and finally the other member of Smith and Bybee Nathaniel Shapiro.

Smith and Bybee Video