Wednesday, February 28th, 2007
spring pod, UNIFORM Studio Spring 2007
Ever since seeing Lisa’s work based on Cassell’s Household Guide, I have been thinking about the patterns I make differently. I was really intrigued by the way she made her patterns as a figure/ground drawing, which really allows you to focus on the flat shape. All of the layered detail and information of the pattern is removed, and the edge and volume of each piece comes forward.
I have made many architectural figure/ground drawings but never thought to look at my patterns this way. It is helping me to simplify and distill my ideas. I especially like the relationship between the pieces, which is giving me some ideas for new directions.
Tuesday, February 27th, 2007
Scissorstitch is opening an Etsy shop March 1st. For a preview of her colorful, fresh and beautifully executed accessories go here.
I am also anxiously awaiting port2port’s shop update on March 1st as well. Good thing that’s payday.
fold bag, UNIFORM Studio Spring 2007
I plan on updating the UNIFORM Studio shop on Saturday, March 3rd with a few spring things, and some items left over from my winter collection. All winter items will be on SALE.
I plan on a bigger spring update in a few weeks.
Saturday, February 24th, 2007
UNIFORM Studio Spring 2007
Someone asked me recently what my “style” is. That’s hard. I don’t think I have a style. If I had to say anything I might say non-trendy. There are so many cute, modern clothing lines out there right now for children and I find them all so inspiring. I think it’s easy to loose sight of a focus though, and to become caught up in trends. But I also keep coming back to what is simple, and somewhat classic, with a few little details thrown in for fun. You can read more on my process here.
The children’s clothing that resonates with me the most is usually European. Here are two of my favorite lines:
Le Vestiaire de Jeanne
And two favorite online shops carrying modern European kids clothing and gear:
The Sartorialist, who covers mainly street fashion in NYC but also travels abroad quite a bit, is now writing a column in Cookie magazine about children’s fashion. It sounds like he was really inspired by the children he saw in Europe while he was there covering the fashion shows. His site is one of my daily reads and I’m really looking forward to his view of children’s fashion.
Wednesday, February 21st, 2007
A submission for Carson’s vessel Wednesday.
This is the large covered casserole designed by Ben Seibel for Roseville Pottery. The line is called Raymor and it was designed in 1952. It has a beautiful raindrop like finish, that has just a very slight texture. And such an elegant shape. I like how the handle is integrated into the lid. All of the pieces are really wonderful, but I especially like the divided vegetable.
Friday, February 16th, 2007
When I was in high school my mother gave me a package of Dritz tracing paper. This tracing paper is the kind used for transferring markings from a sewing pattern onto fabric. It had been hers, probably from the time when I was little and she was making most of my clothes (although the price on the package -25 cents, makes me think she probably got it much earlier).
When she gave it to me all of the sheets had been partially used and had this beautiful worn patina. The little bumpy lines made by the tracing wheel showed years of love that went into making clothing for my brother and I. I liked imagining what she had been tracing – a little smock top with embroidered pockets for me, utilitarian pants out of a tough fabric for my brother.
Since then I have used this package of tracing paper nearly every time I have sewn something. My tracings have mixed with hers and all of the sheets are nearly used up. The edges are crumbling and the package is falling apart. But still I use it. I bought a new package once many years ago, thinking that I didn’t want to use up the one from my mother. That I might save it. But the new paper was waxy and didn’t work very well. And I missed the connection I felt to my mother and her sewing.
One day it will disinigrate and be all used up. But for now I can enjoy using it and the memories it evokes.
(more images here)
Saturday, February 10th, 2007
raglan dress detail, UNIFORM Studio Spring 2007
I mentioned to Sally my frustration with my digital camera in that I could not get a good close up shot. She tuned me in to the macro feature, and I feel like I have a new camera! wow.
Guess I should should have read the users manual.
useless pocket pants detail, UNIFORM Studio Spring 2007
Friday, February 9th, 2007
boy jacket, UNIFORM Studio Spring, 2007
What do kids like to wear? I know what I would like my children to wear – clothing that is well made, out of quality, natural materials. Pieces that are simple, so they don’t overwhelm the beauty of the child, but at the same time interesting in a way that highlights the unique movement and quirkyness that children have.
Children definitely like to wear clothing that is comfortable, both next to their skin and also as they move. But they also want something to identify with. Something that makes it more than just clothes. I think many clothing companies have translated that into embellishment and branding. Make a plain t-shirt and then throw some stuff on it -trucks, logos, princesses and cartoon characters. But I think children also identify with color, shape, pattern and texture.
One of my goals is to make clothing I want my children to wear, and that they want to wear. How do you make something simple and comfortable, but not banal? For me, proportion is key. Take a basic shape and then push the proportion. Narrow on top, wide at the bottom and just a bit shorter than you would expect. Add a really deep bottom band. All the regular pieces are there, but it’s just a bit off. And then there’s the part that he’ll identify with –
My yellow button jacket.
Wednesday, February 7th, 2007
I can never seem to find the exact color I want in a type of fabric or yarn, so I often end up dyeing my own. I love dyeing fiber – there is something magic about measuring and mixing and stirring (and stirring and stirring) and then pouring out the water to reveal the transformation.
This photo shows a little experiment I did, using three types of fabric. The one on the left is a light grey linen, in the middle is a very fine gauge cotton knit jersey and on the right is a featherweight cotton interlock, with a satin finish. I put all three into the dye pot and you can see the results on the top.
The linen came out the darkest, but then it started out grey, so that wasn’t a big surprise. I was surprised by the other two though. I think the satin finish on the interlock made it less permeable than the jersey, so it came out lighter, and not as even.
I use a cold water fiber reactive dye, which gives a really rich, vibrant color. To get the gold here, I just kept throwing colors in until I got what I wanted. Not too scientific. If I am dyeing wool, I use the same dye but the mix is slightly different (you add vinegar) and you have to cook it.
In the near future I hope to find a more natural dyeing method, hopefully one with as wide a color palette as the procion dyes.
Saturday, February 3rd, 2007
Fleur de A coat – spring 2007
I figured out the armholes and ended up changing quite a few other things as well. The previous coat had a much smaller collar and was also more narrow and fitted. With the fancy pattern, it just seemed too formal to me. This one is wide and loose and I like this contrast to the more formal looking material. This material is a heavy weight linen, which also has a casual feel -another contrast to the pattern.
I also added darts at the back shoulders, which helps give it a bit more of an A shape.
I have to say that I LOVE my new Bernina sewing machine. Excuse me, sewing computer, as the manual calls it. It makes my old machine feel like the equivalent of beating your clothes against a rock instead of using a washer. Seriously. I can not believe the difference. And you can call me gadget girl now. I sewed these buttons on with the machine! I want to get every presser foot they make.