I owe an apology to a certain fruit- figs. How could i ever have forgotten about you! I do apologise! I love you in every form, fresh, dried, baked, poached and caramalised. I don’t even mind that you make me look pregnant when I buy a packet of you dried when I’m really hungry and end up eating the majority of you.
I think I had figs on the brain after reading this lovely article entitled ‘Thirteen Ways with Figs’ on the gastronomista blog last night.
Figs, you are especially delicious in my salad tonight which also contains; poached chicken, fried eggplant, caramlised red onion, burnt figs, roasted sunflower seeds, rocket and cucumber. Delicious on a not-so-balmy New York spring time evening, and you go surprisingly well with whiskey (the only booze I have in the house and I can’t really be bothered leaving) so, for tonight, whiskey will do, and I’m not complaining.
I’ve been feeling a bit rubbish today. Very rubbish. I had a terrible sleep last night, the one where you wake up every hour and never feel that you properly get to sleep and just generally feeling pretty average.. so when I woke up at half 5 this morning I decided to get up and go for a run. I listened to another ‘Food Seen’ podcast from my new favourite friends at Heritage Radio- this time with British Jelly pioneers or ‘Jellymongers’ Bompas & Parr. And I fell in love, yet again. God dam those british accents get me every time! And not to mention their very witty sense of humour… I spent most of my run in a constant giggle. I did record a little caption of it, but cannot for the life of me figure out how to upload an .m4a file to wordpress. So if you want to hear it, go to the Heritage Radio Network podcast’s and download episode 49, and scroll fast-forward the 40 min mark.. or just listen to the whole thing. You won’t regret it. Please excuse my untechsaviness.
Today, feeling a bit fragile and sleepy, after meeting a friend for brunch I came home and did something VERY out of character for me. I watched a film during the day. Yes I did get up a couple of times to make tea, check emails and walk around but I watched a film during the day, and you know what.. . I didn’t even feel bad about it! It was a ‘food’ film I’d been meaning to see for years; Like Water for Chocolate. I adored it and was crying like a big girl by the end of it!
I almost died today. Chloe Sevigny walked into the same little bookstore as me on Bond St and I immediately cursed myself for looking particularly underwhelming today (Lady Danger lipstick excluded). And let me say she is equally if not better looking in person. Dam I want to be you, or a least your best friend so I can borrow your clothes.
Tonight I’m having a night in, going to drink at least 3 glasses of whiskey, watch Mostly Martha and get a goods nights sleep before tomorrow’s potluckslideshow event, The Beautiful Bountiful Brooklyn Tasting Hour. I’m very, very, very excited about this and am teaming up with a new found chef friend to create a tasting plate to contribute to the ‘pot luck’ side of the event. We are still finalising our exact dish, so stay tuned for photos, tasting reviews and hopefully a whole new bunch of food fanatic friends.
So I’ve been super slack with posting anything in the days post-design selection however I have been feeling super creatively drained and also have been hit with the realisation that whilst spending 15hrs a day on one project, I’ve been ignoring all the other pressing assignments/exams/group assessments/pop-up store planning that I should have been doing! So unfortunately I’m going to be a little quiet on the blogging front for the new couple of days while I try and get my business school/life/studio balance back in order.
But I did learn a cool fact whist sitting on my balcony with a friend. The collective noun for zebras’ is a DAZZLE! amazing! A dazzle of zebras! I love it! Maybe my collection name should somehow incorporate dazzle (because hopefully it will dazzle everyone…)
Ahhh got to love mother nature and her super natural jazz!
Ive been super slack in the blog posting this week for obvious reasons! Tomorrow is design presentation day. It’s 7.35pm on Wednesday evening and I’m all finished, listening to Sam Cooke with a glass of wine in hand.. life is good!
I’m feeling a little delirious as I didn’t sleep much last night! After 10hrs in the studio, I came home to unwind and do some silk painting.. however this had the opposite affect and made me so inspired with new ideas and designs, so at 3am this morning I tweeked (and I mean this is a very broad way) my final collection. Swapping and changing of colours, pattern, deleting whole print stories, adding new ones; scrapping entire outfits and drawing a whole new idea. Phew I’m exhausted all over again and looking back now I don’t know how or why I did it, but I’m really glad I did as I really love all the changes I made. I’m quite excited about presenting tomorrow, but am feeling a bit anxious and nervous… but nerves are good right?!
I’m going to be super slack here and do a big image dump of my life over the last 3 days, toiling, list making, silk painting and redesigning at 3am.
so enjoy a little insight into my week.
It’s funny for the whole time you are working on a presentation you have so much stuff spread everywhere, fabric, paper, 8 pairs of scissors, tea cups, pencils 5 sketch books on the go and slowly you begin to take over every room in the house with your ‘project’… and then when you finally finish weeks of work, it is condensed into a small neat and tidy pile.
Wine time and sleep time for me.. need to clock in some beauty zzzz’s and work out what to wear tomorrow!
Whilst walking to the studio this morning I was listening to the new Bonobo album ‘Black Sands’.. it is really lovely. Here is one song off the track called ‘Animals’ which started my morning of perfectly on route to sewing some samples..
I don’t drink coke but I would if it came in bottles like these!
I don’t know where they are from but I’m guessing Japan!
Another craft technique that I have been experimenting with and really love the look of is silk painting. I really enjoy how you can make it look as organic as you want or as neat and precise as you want. It allows me to create my own individual interpretation of animals prints, and gives me the freedom to add my personal touch to them.
Using this technique goes back to the whole idea of ‘new luxury’ that I mentioned earlier. Giving people unique, quality and individual garments. I’ve been sketching several different versions of blouse designs, as I would like all (or most) of my shirts/blouses in the collection (reference to early female explorers and what they wore) to be made of silk and all hand painted. This will help to give my collection a point of difference and also ensure that no one else on the market at that time will have the same print as mine. And it will allow the wearer to feel as although I have given a small piece of myself to the garment as I took the time to hand pant it rather than someone else to print it.
Here are a few rough experiments…..
Using silk paints could allow me to make some silk scarfs for accessories too (with my left over silk) which could be quite nice!
One design who influenced me into looking at silk painting was the work of greek born designer Mary Katrantzou. A Central St Martins graduate who features strong, bold graphical prints. Although she uses digital printing, the organic-ness and free form of her designs resemble that of my silk painting experiments. Her designs, although being a mixture of simple and complex designs are enhanced by the prints the create an exciting aesthetic journey of colour, shape and form.
View her full Spring/Summer 10 collection here
I thought that the previous post about Rodarte would be a good introduction in to my textile experimenting. As I’ve mentioned before, I’m focusing my collection now around a classic, clean and streamlined silhouette, with the focus of the collection being put back on my textiles. I mentioned that I’m going to use a lot of craft techniques to create my prints rather than using modern technologies such as digital and laser printing.
A lot earlier on in my posts I mentioned a product called ‘fibre etch’. It’s a product that works only on natural fabrics, and works by breaking down the fibres and essentially ‘eating’ them away leaving you with a cut out (or hole) where ever you painted the product on.
So I experimented on calico with leopard and zebra prints. The process is, because it eats away at the natural fibres, the area that you paint needs to be isolated, so I embroider with a synthetic thread leopard print and zebra print patterns.
The fibre-etch is painted on, then blown dry with a hairdryer (or air-dried but I’m impatient) and then ironed and it burns away. It’s a really fun and satisfying!
I think the leopard print looks more effective, as it almost looks like lace! The zebra one got me thinking, and it could possibly be quite cool if the same principle was used but inverted? Use the trapunto technique (stuffing) rather than eating it away, to create a 3D zebra print…. could look quite cool on a Aline skirt, or pencil skirt…. haven’t experimented with that yet, but we get next week of class so its craft time in the studio.
But I really think this ‘fibre-etch’ technique could be reallllly amazing and effective. I like the way how although it is a print, the print is essentially created by the fabric (or skin) underneath. Because if you wore a fabric the same colour, the print would almost disappear and would be as though you were wearing a normal garment, however if you were to wear a COLOUR or PRINT (or nothing, just your skin) underneath it, that would create the effect of the print.
Here are a few little examples/experiments from photoshop… you’ll have to meet me half way here and picture the base fabric being out of a nice grey linen maybe? or olive green…. and in a jacket/trouser/maybe even jumpsuit?
And a few experiments with the zebra print…
I’m going to get a toile done next week of either a jacket/pants/jumpsuit or maybe even a ‘safari suit’ (or my take on it).. seems like I have a rather busy week in the studio next week!
I found this vintage pattern in my op-shopping trip as well, which is quite interesting and I guess a more every day sort of use of the same idea as the whole ‘firbe etching’ idea.. but more so with the zebra print.
and then also this image although I can’t remember where I found it…
mmmmmm this has sparked a few ideas!! watch this space!