Project de. is my vow to interpret the constant inspiration surrounding me and filter it to design and construct a single garment every month, for the entire year. I successfully completed this challenge in 2011, and I am renewing my vow for 2013. These garments are a labor of love and a direct representation of my musings.
MARCH DESIGN: Geo V-Neck Vest
Spring has finally made it to Brooklyn! You can tell by the photos we took on our roof this morning- the sun is shining bright! For my March Project de. Design, I decided to experiment with a new silhouette made from simple shapes. I’m very happy with the outcome and can’t wait to wear this dress many times over this summer. I used a structured vintage fabric for this dress, although I think it would work in a softer silk as well. Enjoy your weekend and the official start of Spring!
FEBRUARY DESIGN: Double V-Neck Vest
As soon as February hits, wardrobe boredom sets in and the thought of dressing for Spring consumes my thoughts. Taking this into consideration for my February Project de. design, I went with a double v-neck loose vest with open side slits. Right now it works well layered over a classic button down and skinny jeans but come Spring/Summer, this piece will be a staple. I can already see myself wearing it over vintage slips, simple skirts and at the beach over my swimsuit.
JANUARY DESIGN: Angular Leather Skirt
Today marks the official return of Project de. – my vow to make one new garment every month for the entire year. For January I decided to make a not-so-basic black leather skirt. Keeping the length short , with a layered look makes it versatile to dress up or down. I’ve obsessed over angular hems recently so incorporating them into this leather skirt was a no brainer.
Two weeks into the New Year and I am keeping up my resolutions! Not only did I make this leather skirt, but I also put my outfit together with older pieces from my wardrobe – a favorite Madewell sweater, vintage belt, Cynthia Rowley tights (shear in the front and solid in the back, love the 60′s vibe and the practicality), with my LD Tuttle boots.
Although these garments are not part of Project de., I did design and make them.
July 30, 2012: Remember a few weeks ago when I told you about my fabric archive that desperately needed to be put to good use? Well I did a little draping and sewing last week and put together this light weight french terry frock. Stripes and asymmetry are a perfect pair, creating more visual interest. I plan to live in this dress for the rest of the summer, or until I make another one….
(worn with my DIY necklace and zara sandals)
July 30, 2012: This hot New York City summer made me realize that I don’t own enough easy to throw on, breathable cotton clothing. So I’ve decided to dive into my archive of vintage fabrics and start designing. Most of my fabrics were given to me by my Aunt Bert, so there is no rhyme or reason to this arsenal of mismatched yardage. Lucky for me the fabrics are mostly cotton, but unlikely for my wardrobe, they are in some brightly colored prints! Print mixing is a big trend for Resort 2013 so I tried to make it work for my wardrobe by following these 3 key rules…
1. Keep it in the family, the same color family that is. Choose prints that have similar colors, but different composition. / 2. Mix different scales. Choose one print that has a smaller and tighter scale and one that is larger and more open. / 3. Keep the shapes simple. When mixing prints, in one garment or one look, keep the silhouettes basic. Let the prints do the talking.
For this simple structured top I chose a no-print print for the body and matched it with a lighter grounded, larger scale print that carries the same colors. By keeping the silhouette boxy and basic, the prints create a graphic statement on their own.
July 10, 2013: Today I am proud to wear a “Not Photoshopped” t-shirt to help support Feel More Better spread encouraging words to women everywhere. In an effort to take the message further, they created the Media and Public Health Act which aims to pass federal legislation requiring advertising and editorial that meaningfully change the human form through photoshopping or airbrushing to carry “Truth in Advertising” labels.
As a designer in the fashion industry, it is easy to become jaded about body image, and what’s considered beautiful. I think having your own style is the ultimate in beauty. I wore my tee with some of my designs- a floral skirt that I made from vintage floral fabric and a necklace made from reclaimed trims and chains.
DECEMBER DESIGN: Bow Cuff Blouse
Cut from the cloth of vintage goods, this top has a slightly cropped silhouette with side slits and bow cuffs. This marks the end of the first year of Project de. I successfully made 1 garment a month this year. Realizing that it keeps me creative, and keeps my knowledge of construction, pattern making and draping up to par, I have decided to continue for 2012! Happy New Year!
NOVEMBER DESIGN: Diamond Drape
Delicate diamond pointelle jersey makes for a perfectly draped skirt. Worn with a belt and an oversized tee, this skirt is as easy to wear as your favorite jeans.
OCTOBER DESIGN: Plaid About You
I’ve had this plaid fabric for years and I could never decide what to make out of it, until now! Putting a twist on a basic plaid shirt, with dolman sleeves and a slightly cropped silhouette. I love the colors in this plaid, black, navy and grey. I wore it with a simple dark pair of jeans, a statement necklace and a set of silver cuff bracelets to top it off. I have some more yardage left, so maybe I will make a dress out of this fabric next… stay tuned!
(all images from DeSmitten)
SEPTEMBER DESIGN: Fallen Angle
I am experimenting with new simply draped silhouettes lately, and this dress was no exception. Using a basic neckline shape, but playing with the balance and cut of the pattern, I was able to create this asymmetrical dress. I cut certain drastic angels that fell into a strategically placed drape. I used 4-ply silk crepe, which has a nice weight and drape to it.
AUGUST DESIGN: Block Update
Loving the colorblock trend that took over Spring and is hanging around for Fall, I thought it needed a bit of an update. I used a geo printed upholstery (which I bought at the Domino Magazine close out sale) at the center of a graphic black (waistband) and white frame (side panels). Utterly seasonless, I will wear this skirt into next Spring (since clearly color blocking isn’t going anywhere)!
JULY DESIGN: Asymmetrical Birch
Continuing my draping experiment, I made this light weight jersey top with asymmetrical silhouette and braided strap. Inspired by the hot city summer, and the much-needed summer get-a-ways to the country… The fabric is a slub rayon jersey which has a similar texture to the birch tree but the silhouette more suitable to wear in the city.
JUNE DESIGN: Star and Stripes
American textiles, interior finishes and quilts have been on my mind lately. When I was growing up, my grandma was always working on a quilt. The one she made me has been on my bed since I was 13. It is worn in and fabulously comfortable. I made this top from a red and muslin striped crinkle gauze. It has the same feeling as my quilt, worn to perfection. The silhouette is reminiscent of a star, and I folded the back details and stitched it down to create texture.
MAY DESIGN: Leather Collar Dress
Inspired by poppy floral printed china silk and Bridgette Bardot’s style in the 1960′s , I designed this asymmetrical leather collared dress for a wedding that I went to in Ireland.
APRIL DESIGN: Waverly
Inspired by the wavy stripe of the silk charmeuse fabric I bought over a year ago and by the nuptials of my friends who were just wed on the beach… The organic movement of the stripes mimic the ocean waves. I wore this dress to their wedding and had a blast! The tropical vacation was much-needed! This is the first dress I have draped in a while, I usually make flat patterns. I think for asymmetrical garments, it is faster to drape than to make the pattern.
*note that I used the wrong side of the silk charmeuse fabric to have a more matte finish. I thought the stripes, draping and seaming would have been too much in shiny charmeuse.
MARCH DESIGN: Color-Cut Dress
I was continually inspired by earthy tones and textures this month… I made this cut-out color block dress using crinkle gauze and cheesecloth… A perfectly easy dress to wear to a music festival this summer!
FEBRUARY DESIGN: Linear Blocked Top
Inspired by the lines in the streets I pass over everyday, I designed this Linear Blocked Top. I turned to the photographs of Alice Rosati and Eliot Lee Hazel for color direction; almost army green, dusty peach and simple ivory. A loose-fitting, easy to wear top that I will most likely live in, come Spring.
JANUARY DESIGN: Softly Structured
Folded flowers, textured sidewalks and structured filters inspired this season-less top.