Salad Bowl Dress

Hand Tailored Deconstructed Clothing.




It all started when...

I had more clothes than I knew what to do with and nothing to wear. People were always giving me hand me downs and it wasn't enough that they fit me or seemed like new. They needed to be a style I could embrace. So I started to make one blouse out of many, and altered pants by adding inserts to the pant legs to make them a bigger bell shape or the opposite and taper a pant leg. Sometimes I added another waistband above the one already there to make them high waisted or cut it off and frayed the raw edge.

My friends hired me to update their whole closet. We added tapered darts to blouses, hemmed, removed sleeves, made skirts n tops out of long dresses, jumpsuits out of blending suits, generally cut, distressed and patched everything and I would take away the rest to donate or use in my creative endeavors.

A first favorite was making the perfect tote bag that I still make today. It can stand up on its own with a few strategic pockets, one snap and big enough to drop a lap top in.   

Working my whole adult life in the fashion industry as a Patternmaker with iconic fashion brands I had access to tons of fabric and notions being thrown away. I couldn't bare to see the goods go to waste, so I would dumpster dive and end up with amazing finds for what I liked to make.

I always add pockets to everything, not being one to carry a purse with me everywhere. Then I realized I was making utilitarian clothing with the many functional pockets, but it was flattering at the same time because as a patternmaker I know how to make clothing fit and tailored. 

The utilitarian vests, skirts, and dresses were perfect for a busy schedule of running around with my three kids, and still presentable to be seen at an Art opening, a play, volunteering or a last minute dinner date.

If I came across a garment that seemed fine as is, it was donated to the Goodwill but never did I buy anything from there. We all have so much that I only used what my family grew out of or my friends dropped off on my front porch, rejected for whatever reason. 

Eventually I started making vests to sell. The creativity afforded by the deconstruction movement led me to become an Artist. My artist friends asked me to exhibit as a Deconstructed clothing artist while I sold my wares at artisinal craft shows. I began showing in Art Exhibits and joined an artists group. I became an expert on creative fashion and was asked to judge contests and the like. 

Always being enterprising, the scraps from cutting things up were used for collaged pillows, table runners , and even slip covers. Hence, the Home Goods were born. I like to think of these as the Bowl(the vessel, the home) in Salad Bowl Dress. 

I became a clothing Patternmaker by profession. And now I am tossing clothes in the air letting them land somewhere in a mashup of function and fit. What I am doing is sustainable by keeping the clothing out of the landfill. It harks back to my desire for a clean environment, and being sustainable by growing our own food and composting which is the best thing we can do for the enviroment. Also, I see making things or refurbishing as a better way to express ourselves rather than buying the corporate version.

I wish everyone would embrace their lives in a new light, a more custom, original light.