From Concept to Reality

In design school you are always supposed to start with an inspiration, but sometimes inspiration just comes from an idea. That is how my first collection started… with the leopard dirndl. Then I used that, and the rainforest, as the base for the rest of the pieces. The summer collection started with the color yellow and the use of batik. But the newest collection was different. I fell in love the the TV show, Stargate Atlantis and wanted to see if I could translate that into a collection. The first piece I drew up was a gown with a small corset that was inspired by the villain of the show, the Wraith.

I had a whole bolt of this chiffon fabric that I bought because it was on sale and something drew me to the odd iridescent mix of light olive and red. I wanted to pair it with a red reptile skin. It took me a while, but I found the perfect fabric!

Two days of working on the dress and trying to find ways to create the garment the way I imagined it was complete. Its a dress that may not be the most beautiful, but thats what I love about it… its intriguing. The color, the drape and the combination of chiffon and faux skin draws you in and you can’t look away. It is not meant to be worn to prom or to the oscars, its meant to set the tone for the collection and make the viewer want to see more.

Although the dress was finished, it still needed to be photographed and the wrong model in the wrong setting could destroy the vision in the blink of an eye. I found a model that was just the look I was going for… simply fierce. She was just the girl that could pull off the look. Her hair was bright blonde/silver and I knew that all I had to do was add some black extensions and braids and she could bring the gown to life.

But what about the setting? Wraith don’t frolic through the forest, they suck the life out of people with their hands! They don’t sit on a nice sofa, they fly little deadly dart-like cruisers and plan their next diabolical move from huge hive ships! But the industrial and dirty setting of my dad’s body shop was just the place! It was a little dark, a little dingy and totally unexpected… just what I like!

Put them all together and what do you get?! Pure awesomeness! This was the first time I saw an entire look go from imaginary vision in my head to reality. It was like she popped off the page of my sketch and into real life.

I cannot wait to release this collection on my website in a few weeks and I don’t know that there are words to explain how happy I am with the outcome of this photo shoot. This is why I love my job! This is what I live for!

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