Tag Archives: fashion

Felted Inspiration

26 Jan

I’ve never made anything out of felt, but it’s a fabric texture that appeals to me in many forms.

A lot of designers are doing interesting things with it, and it has great qualities that make it really versatile. Like the German designers Marianne and Josef Wurst of “Filz und Kunz”, who do silk and wool felt, sometimes woven together, sometimes in layers of transparent and thickly opaque.

See how the jacket on the left has strips of felt beginning as stripes and continuing down as a sculptural effect.  My favorite, though, is the belt (left) and bustier (right) made out of strips of colorful felt, and then “strung” on thing black elastic, to create a stretchy band that hugs the body, curving the vertical stripes along the shape of the waist.

To think of it: a felt bustier!  It is both surprising, and yet still  wearable. And the construction of those might potentially be applied to other materials, as well.

Fun Fashion Illustration

9 Jan

One of my many favorite Etsy shops is Matou En Peluche, illustrations of fashion, and cats, and birds, and other lovely things. I think they’re elegant and often portray a good amount of fashion detail in their spare and elegant lines. I have a few of these prints in my sewing room as inspiration and decoration.

Fashion Photographer Bill Cunningham

2 Jan

“The wider world perceives fashion as sometimes a frivolity that should be done away with in the face of social upheavals and problems that are enormous. The point is, in fact, that fashion is the armor to survive the reality of everyday life.”
-Bill Cunningham, in Bill Cunningham New York.

(photo by Patrick Demarchelier)

Bill Cunningham New York was, in my opinion, the sweetest movie of the year. I’m a sucker for documentaries about artists, anyway, but watching a man so genuinely in love with his subject was thoroughly satisfying.  One of his peers in the film points out one thing that I think is specific to Bill Cunningham’s “On the Street” feature in the Times: the particular kindness of his camera. When Bill Cunningham photographs a street fashion trend, it is with a respectful attention, something I think is unusual in the fashion world. So many people like to point at fashion with criticism, as if their criticism is a mark their own superior tastes, but for decades Cunningham’s been documenting the comings and goings of all sorts of styles, and never in such a way that anyone needs to have a black bar plastered over their faces to preserve their anonymity.  Everything is interesting, whether one understands it (or loves it) at first glance–or any other later glance, for that matter. Fashion is not a set of rules, it’s creativity, a far more complex conversation than simple “dos” and “don’ts” or “hits” and “misses”.   It’s full of texture and color and richness and variety, it can be startling or elegant, make you gasp with its grace or instead with shock, it can baffle and amuse, and for that, I give both Bill Cunningham’s photo career and the film documenting it two thumbs up.

Upcycling Inspiration: Gary Harvey

30 Dec

Like everyone else, I’ve been watching low-brow fabrics emerging into upmarket fashions for a little while, like the old flannel grunge shirt fabric finding its way into chic dresses. I’ve been wondering myself about taking cloth from unexpected sources and sewing into a conventional shape of a completely different form, but my thoughts have run along more mundane lines, like canvas and burlap.

Now Gary Harvey transforms blue jeans, tee shirts, laundry bags, trench coats, and army jackets  into feminine ballgown styles, taking it to a very elegant extreme.

More can be seen here, and they’re really worth looking at carefully: http://garyharveycreative.com/