As part of a conscious approach to Design I have opted to use unwanted fabrics in the clothing collections I design and create. Every season is different and every garment is unique. I begin by scouting the fabric stores in the garment district, 35th, 36th, and 37th streets between Broadway and 7th. You’ll see me diving under tables, and inside giant cardboard boxes to look for fabric that is in usable condition, by usable I mean I can wash it, rip it, sew it and/ or paint it. Once I find fabrics I coordinate color stories including the various fabrics mixed together and the trimmings I will add later. You can see this in the pictures below. The colors are approached as if they are finished garments on the rack, how do they look next to each other? what is the presence of the colors as a full collection? what is most attractive to a customer? This aids me in making a decision on whether I use the fabrics as accents or as full garments. Once this is set I usually choose 1-4 items, tops, bottoms, or dresses, which I will make with variations on silhouette or trimmings. Creating a few items is useful because I want to be at an affordable price and make my producing time smooth. This also allows me to design smaller capsules within each color or trim idea, with minor variations like a big shirt with a square, scoop, or a u neckline. Also in this manner the collection can be expanded and items can easily be mixed and matched.
I approach the Design process by being inspired with fabric and trim first, I then do lots of research on style and finally I add my favorite crafting finishes. The silhouettes are kept simple to allow the craft details to stand out. Part of the ‘think green’ movement is not just to create instead of buying for yourself or others but to also cut down on the demand of more fabric, try finding unwanted fabrics, and also trimmings, that will stand the wear and tear of creativity and keep them from being dumped in a landfill this is a truly conscious way to Design and craft.