For the love of lingerie

I’ve been dragging my heels regarding this confession. But here it goes…[deep breath in….gusty exhalation]. I love lingerie. I mean, I may as well wear a tee shirt that says, “will work for shoes and lingerie.” I pay bills, contribute to our retirement accounts, some groceries and gas for my car, but every extra cent is saved for shoes and lingerie.

“Real elegance is everywhere, especially in the things we do not show.” -Christian Dior

“Lingerie is NOT about seducing men. It’s about embracing womanhood.” -Dita Von Teese

“Without foundation, there can be no fashion.” -Christian Dior

There are four lingerie companies that I feel passionate about, Cosabella, Aniela Parys, Fleur du mal and Cadolle.

Aniela Parys, originally from Portland, Oregon is now based primarily out of Barcelona, Spain. She hand makes many of her articles from dead stock (leftover fabric that goes unused by the mill or brand that fabricated it. Be it because the fabric turned out blue when it was meant to be purple, the brand ordered more than they could use or they simply decided it wasn’t right for the piece for which they intended it, deadstock fabric is any textile that’s sitting around as a leftover without plans for future use.).

Now Cosabella is more mainstream. An Italian couple relocated for work from their homeland to Miami, Florida. While her husband was away at work, Valeria needed something to do! She started exporting a selection of Italian made garments to sell in Miami. As other European companies started outsourcing their manufacturing to cheaper countries, Cosabella began producing their own line of lingerie (thus eliminating the middle man) in Italy. Where they are to this day!

Fleur du mal is about dressing up and undressing (that’s their tag line!) . A little edgier then the other two, an e-commerce business with a studio in Soho NYC. I also love their description of goods, “Feminine, chic and slightly subversive.” The founder, Jennifer Zuccarini used to be the design director at Victoria’s Secret before going off on her own. I have never bought a piece of hers yet, but I like looking at them.

Another company I draw inspiration from is Cadolle. Cadolle is THE Parisian lingerie house, Herminie Cadolle literally invented the bra in 1889.

“Lingerie is a woman’s inner, secret glamour.” -Alice Temperley

This is the start to my exploration in lingerie making. There is so much specialty “equipment” ! Look at those tiny pins (game changer right there). I found sewsassy.com as a resource for special elastic, stretch lace, stretch satin, hardware and software. I picked a few things up at Joann’s but selection was limited.

Alabama Chanin baby doll top. Imagine this in different materials: leather, satin, lace trim, a black sequined bodice with a light weight flowy leather “skirt”.

“The first thing you put on in the morning and the last thing you take off at night, make it good!” -unknown

Collaboration and proposal

Now that the outfit for the wedding is just about finished, its time to gear up to work on the pieces for an art show proposal.

Here is the fabric I will be working with.

Here is a sketch of the outfit. A plaid spencer jacket with leg of mutton sleeves and alligator print leather back panel. I may use the stainless steel washers as some sort of fastener. Hand dyed maroon denim covered with hand dyed gray lace for skinny jeans. And a vintage fascinator to top it all off. There will be more, but that’s a start.

A couple quick sketches of clothes that came to mind on my morning jogs.

Seeds are being sown for a possible artist collaboration between myself and Lesia Socher, the creator of the above multimedia paintings. Last night, that proposal was delivered and met with enthusiasm, and she took photos of some of my work that she would like to paint. Something is evolving, and I’m very excited!

Mid-Summer Exploration

Corset gifts and a new slip dress in leather and a poly/rayon blend.

My mother used to tell me you can tell a good artist or a quality piece when the unseen details are as beautiful as the seen details.

Working on samples of an art piece in non traditional materials, and be fully functional. A top knit out of VHS tape, trimmed in dog hair, (donated by my corgi mix and spun into yarn by me). A wrap skirt from inner tube rubber, embellished with staples.

Jolene’s fashion faux pas

Disclaimer:

These rules only apply to myself!! Use them if you wish or make up your own.

  • No pajamas. I despise pajamas, loungewear, and sweatpants. Wear lingerie or nothing to bed. And NEVER in public!
  • Proper posture. Back straight, shoulders slightly back, head up. Engage you core, stop making your back do everything. Want to look like you lost 20 pounds and have flatter abs? Posture.
  • No smoking or excessive drinking. I’ve given up both entirely. Show the world you are a classy lady.
  • All I wear for jewelry are earrings. Metallic only, no stones. I have sensory issues wear I don’t like anything that “circles” any part of my body. I don’t even wear my wedding ring. I agree with the opinion that you shouldn’t wear a necklace with earrings or rings with bracelets and vise versa. Too much in one area. I also won’t wear mascara and lipstick together.

“Simplicity is the keynote of all true elegance.” CoCo Chanel

  • Wear clothes that flatter your body type. It takes a long time to figure out what works for your unique build. Once you do, go with it! Don’t be influenced by trends that won’t work for you.

“If you don’t feel comfortable in a plunging sweater, skin-tight jeans, and killer heels, go home and change.” Ines de la Fressange

  • I don’t like the “cold shoulder” “thing” going on right now.
  • I don’t generally like any part of a bra to show. Unless it is a design element for the entire piece.

“Ripped jeans? …… Insanity!” Iris Apfel

  • Black and brown CAN be worn together.
  • Red and pink CAN be worn together.
  • Blue and black CAN be worn together.

An afternoon at the beach

Pemaquid beach, Maine

Swimsuit by Aniela Parys

A new dress.

Made of repurposed fabric. The process.

Detail of the various seams. Really neat. The secret? Ironing, ironing and more ironing.

Before and after.

Finished leather “corset”

Chugging along…

Slowly getting some sewing and knitting done. Never enough though…

The “Greta” top is done.

Princess seamed tank top has its binding all basted.

I have gotten a little distracted from clothing fabrication and started sample squares of different techniques taught by Natalie Chanin, fashion designer and founder of Alabama Chanin. Top photo is an example of reverse appliqué, black on black. Next is “Alabama fur”, getting the idea of a top with a “fur” collar. When I do enough sample squares I want to sew them together to make a throw blanket.

Latest spurge to add to my collection of Alabama Chanin books.

Complete new outfit

Debuted last night at a dinner/game party.

Detail on the corset. Alabama Chanin pattern.

Back side.

Hem and top stitching detail. Bryr clogs, “Maggie” in whiskey leather with tassels.

Jewelry by TiroTiro: Luz studs//brass, and Radian earrings//silver. Chainmaille clasp by my husband, Lucas.

Getting ready for Spring break

 

55B84132-53DC-43BB-814C-1DCD7CDBA6A6

I have both outfits for Spring break lined up and ready for finishing.  My new Bryr clogs, of which there is a month lead time, (made to order) will be in tomorrow.  My new TiroTiro earrings have also been ordered.  Now it’s time to get to work!

Copper thread detailing on my own pants design.

The two shirts to go with the above pants.  My own design funnel neck sleeveless top.  The Alabama Chanin pattern for a tank top with princess seams (really enjoyed this one), fully lined because the fabric is so shear.

The second outfit.  Pants pattern is a modified Jalie 3243 and the corset and bolero from Alabama Chanin.

2FF393F2-2A41-4D3C-BE44-6F45B161249D

A little sparkle in our lives!

0BE194A9-A713-4B8C-8CDB-3E13FD37531A

Need to get some knitting done after all this!  Camisole pattern from Vintage Knits by Sarah Dallas.  Samples in homespun Alpaca/Angora blend and a wool boucle yarn.