Saturday, April 5, 2008

Budding Designers

I have a couple of young students in my Saturday afternoon class and I must tell you, I am impressed with their dedication and talent.
Each week they bring their sketch books with the latest sketches and we sit for a while and review them together. So far, they have sketched everything from shorts and tanks to evening gowns and accessories. We've talked about the fabrics for each design, sewing techniques to use, sizing, pricing, custom vs. RTW, including back views and more.
A good part of each lesson focuses on sewing techniques so we work on lots of stitching samples, machine issues, edge finishes and pressing techniques. Each of them has produced something usable at this point. (they've only been coming for a few weeks) J has made a tote bag and is finishing her first dress and matching purse while K, who only joined 3 weeks ago, was so anxious to "make something" that she turned one of her stitching samples into a little clutch bag. She can't wait for her next lesson so she can add rhinestones to it.
In the course of creating these things the girls have learned to use sergers, embellish fabric, fuse interfacing, edge finish seam allowances and create or adapt a pattern.
And to think they are 11 and 13 years old! Watch out, Vogue, these girls are coming!

Friday, April 4, 2008

Working on the Trunk Show

Anca and I met today to finalize some things for the Trunk Show next Sunday
(April 13th from 2 to 8 pm) and Sandra Bearden from Jahari's Spiritual Jewelry was also in today to drop off the jewelry she made for the Show to complement the garments that Anca and I have made. It promises to be a great show with clothing styles that are just not available in the stores. I hope all of you will be able to come! Trunk Shows are fun because you get to be the models and the designers are right there so you can ask questions and get advice.
I've got a number of skirts, some jackets (several have hand painted linings!) and a very unique dress I made for a design's actually 4 dresses and a skirt in one! You have to see it to believe it. There are the 2 capes I made that won prizes at the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival and I've decided to include some of the decorator pillows and home dec stuff. I hope to make some more things this coming week.
Anca showed me photos of some of the things she has made and I loved them and you're gonna love them, too! Lots of beautiful fabrics, prints and solids, formal to casual...I don't want to give away too much, so plan to come!
As working designers, Anca and I know that every body is unique so fit is always an issue. We have agreed that if you like something, but the fit or color doesn't suit you, most garments can be ordered as a custom garment. That lets you in on the design process!
I'm getting more excited just telling you about it. And guess what!!!! Our Trunk Show will be mentioned in the Washingtonian Magazine in the Roundup column! Thanks, Hannah!
And don't forget, your ticket price is refunded with your first purchase at the show, a real win-win for everyone!

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Latest Costume Project

I'm working this Spring with the Chesapeake Shakespeare Company and I'm really excited! This is not only a talented group of people to work with, they pride themselves on also being professional and considerate and respectful to each and every person involved in the production from interns to "stars." Actually, at last night's meeting, no one acted "starry," even when I was measuring for their costumes.
CSC is entering their 6th season and performs at the Patapsco Female Institute. I've never had an opportunity (okay, I did have many, but always had to work to meet a deadline) to see one of their productions, but the word in the Green Room is "great!" This year they will be doing 2 shows in repertory (when 2 or more shows rotate appearing during the season) I'm doing costumes for Comedy of Errors and I met Kristina Lambdin last night who will be doing the same for The Tempest.
I'll keep you posted on the costume progess, show dates and ticket info as we move along on the production. And by the way, I highly recommend the Tiber River House, a restaurant in Ellicott City!