Thursday, July 26, 2012

And Now for Something Completely Different!!!!

My Favorite Things- Fashion Designers!

I think my favorite fashion of all time was the 1930's. But, I love to see the evolution of a designer's style as it emerges and how she brands herself becoming synonymous with an era. Coco Chanel was a master at branding... Who doesn't recognize the interlocking c's of her logo... a photo of her early labels is very difficult to find.. I haven't found one yet... I did find a fabulous quote and one that I abide by in my own designs... 
 Another favorite is Elsa Schiaperelli, her bold use of color and avant garde way of detailing her fashion, without detracting from the beautiful line of the female body. Her designs are feminine and shocking.. I also love her for her use of Shocking Pink! A true inspiration to me.... 

My most inspiring designer is Madeleine Vionnet! 

Madeleine making magic!
She, with her innovative use of the fabric, was able to define a style for many decades. And that style evolved over a great many decades and is still as classic today as it was in the days that she designed them. 

 These dresses evoke the image of whipped vanilla, as the bias fabric drapes in soft folds around the feminine figure.

 Shimmering pools of liquid silk (not sure if the wedding gown is silk... my guess is yesss.. very little drapes like a silk!) These are silhouettes from the 30's. Very simple, elegant and somewhat minimalist. The style accentuates the textile and the form...

I use this principle often in my design of a window dressing. In fact, this photo inspired a cornice board that I had made for a trade show several years ago.. unfortunately, I have no idea where the photo of the finished window is. The fabric was iridescent gold/orange duppioni silk with the inside of the 'collar' in a deep orange red silk.  If I can track down a photo of it I will post it later... here is the inspiration photo....
The neckline was adapted and featured on the face of a plain and simple cornice board and draped over the edge, with glass bead  trim in amber.
A few years ago, I was flipping around on Amazon and found a review of a fabulous book of Vionnet. The price tag was $245.00 I was saddened, it looked like such a lovely book. I wished for it. Then I remembered that while in Paris, I had gone to my favorite bookstore and purchases a book about Vionnet. So, I ran to the book shelf and quickly began to peruse its contents... My heart raced as I realized it was the same book I had only moments earlier been coveting.
The coveted Vionnet book-already in my possession!

The book not only shares history of Vionnet, her philosophies and photos of her beautiful creations, but  templates to recreate them yourself.   I have yet to do this... Maybe a good February project... It could happen!

I also have this vintage pattern, which reminds me of the above Vionnet dress... 

Beautiful 'fish scales' that must shimmer with movement as she glides through a dimly lit room.

It has been great fun sharing these images that I found to be most beautiful and significant for the impact that fashion and great fashion designers have had on my career and my work... I must find a photo of that cornice... at least recreate a sketch of it for your viewing pleasure... 

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