Immersed in poetry. Lyrics and music by Hozier, prose by Atticus and Jewel. Writing my own in my head during my walks, then making their way to paper. Ultimately a resurgence of creativity in the atelier.
Finished enough French seams to add the beaded neck binding.
Came up with a new outfit idea inspired by AnyOldIron from Nashville, Tennessee. I was thinking of buying one of their sequined jumpsuits during my southern pilgrimage. Alas, that price is a little prohibitive, but…I can make something similar!
Born under the sign of Cancer
I am drawn to sparkles
Sunlight on water.
– J G Bryant
Sash making. What I find both frustrating and interesting when using repurposed fabric is dealing with and working around flaws. Take these holes for instance, I embroidered over them. Little details like these only add to the character of the garment.
These Frame denim jeans are handcrafted in Los Angeles. I purchased these at Nordstrom Rack in Boston for a RIDICULOUSLY low price. But, the time has come to customize. Flares will become skinnies. Then they need a dye job. Patching and embroidery may become involved. I’ve contemplated “punking” out one pair with randomly placed repurposed zippers.
I stand naked in front of the mirror
Squinted eyes scrutinize
Every detail like an art critique.
This is soft and squishy
I wish my breasts were better shaped
My ankles are nice.
Am I beautiful? Do I think so? Does anyone think so? Do I even care? Why do I care? What is beauty anyways?
My inner woman’s consciousness monologue to my inner psychologist.
I feel the stares
Do they think I’m ridiculous?
But nobody laughs, nobody scoffs, nobody says anything.
– J G Bryant
I’m sometimes asked if I get inspiration from fashion magazines. My answer? Not really. I get inspired from Instagram, Pinterest, and folks I see at work. Here are a couple examples:
The last two are from a magazine though! But you can see what sorts of things I’m looking at. I like the idea of painting on clothes, that’s been going on for a while but I’m conflicted because I also like solid black. I love making entire outfits one color but all different textures; black velvet, with black leather, with black lace, with black denim, black jersey, black satin, with black beads or sequins, oh ya!
All denim outfits. Instagram inspiration. I’m planning on making a pair of jeans with random zippers all over, I’ve started saving zippers off the clothes I’m repurposing.
Working on the pattern for the second NOLA dress. A maxi length corset dress. And my new cards came in today!
Started the trim on the new Christmas jacket. Made from repurposing a huge, ugly, gaudy blazer, found on the free pile at our community center and leather remnants. Gold thread, herringbone stitch on embossed patent leather.
Husband Luke fitting me for my chainmaille bolero! He’s working on it again! Aluminum rings from The Ring Lord in Canada.
First NOLA dress. The skirt is made from repurposed curtains that I bought for a dollar at a yard sale, then dyed. Bodice is only basted onto the skirt, but I had to put it on and dance a little!! Can be worn with or without the corset, although the corset ensures no wardrobe malfunction will occur while boogieing to a zydeco street band in the French Quarter, LOL!
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!
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
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.
Here’s a partial line up of this summer’s projects. Complete with knitted camisole, my recycled strip jeans, and custom dyed red skinny jeans.
I also picked up some freebies on the side of the road! I’m thinking of transforming the plaid blazer into a Spencer jacket with leg of mutton sleeves and some gold or copper metallic embellishments.
Imagine this dress as a slip dress worn with the little spencer jacket 🤩
I started working with leather. This corset is being made from leather salvaged from 2 used pair of leather pants. It will have fresh water pearl embellished trim. Not easy, but extremely satisfying. Not sure what method of attachment I will go with: lacing, a zipper, or other, on one side.
More experiments with leather: machine sewn this time and top “stitched” with staples. Kinda cool!
Working on a special event outfit. A high-low hemmed, sequined, princess seamed, navy blue trimmed tank dress. With a matching dove gray leather, cap-sleeved bolero; a navy blue felted boat cap and peacock blue nubuck, cross over, high-heeled clogs.
It is all basted together with my new clothing tag design located inside the “train” back. Visible when I walk (I hope).
Embroidered leather clothing tags. I’m contemplating maybe, just maybe, creating a few pieces to sell 😬😳😨
In the thick of several projects at once. Two pairs of pants, another hat makeover, and embroidery.
I like to mix machine sewing with hand sewing. I’m very pleased with how I hand-attached these back pockets.
A future back pocket. Recently very inspired by a woman: Tessa Perlow, who does incredible embroidery on “up-cycled” clothes. I have a Calvin Klein shirt I recently acquired from Good-will that I’m now planning on embellishing. This design of a snake wrapped around an apple was originally a tattoo. To me it represents all kinds of temptation, especially when placed on my butt pocket! the wearer of the tat said it represented good and evil to them. Either way it’s pretty deep.
All this embroidery resurgence came about because I wanted clothing tags made up but wasn’t happy with the affordable options and I was too cheap to splurge. This one I may leave shortened to just 2a.m. because it is so huge. I want to put fleur-de-lis on everything!
Customizing another vintage hat. This is a “straw” beret. If I get invited to the particular wedding or reception (hint, hint) that I badly want to go to, I will put a Rose in the band.
My first Spring bouquet.
Another completed outfit. Just in time for the couple of dinner parties that came up lately. Clogs from Bryr studio: “Maggie” high heeled with tassels in whiskey leather, and earrings by TiroTiro: Luz studs//brass and Radian//silver.
It’s all in the details. Feather stitch, sheaf stitch and double chevron.
Even my new “business” cards are sparkly! (It doesn’t show up very well in photos unfortunately).
Upping my game in the journaling. I get to dress my little models.