Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Season 17 Week 3: Inspired by Art

Prepare to walk through an art gallery.  This week our designers put on their artist beret's and set to work creating the most wonderful art experience ever!

Handmade Boy - Modernly Primitive

I am so excited to be a part of week three!! Thank you for all of your support!
Week three's brainstorming session started much like week two's. Thomas and I had a conversation. Upon being asked who his favorite artist is, Thomas replied with "Oh! That guy who likes red and straight lines and doesn't use a lot of colors." Now, that could be quite the puzzle. But, I was luckily enough to be a helper during his second grade art classes last year, and I had a rough idea of who he was talking about. A quick text to his art teacher (for real, I'm friends with her. ;) ) and she was able to tell me the name of the artist, Horace Pippin. Filled with American Folk inspiration, we designed our look, Modernly Primitive.

Horace Pippin was an American Folk artist from the 1940s. He was self taught and used a limited amount of color in his work, with the primary use of colors resembling those from war times with lots of grays. However, he enjoyed adding a stroke of red to each of his paintings. So of course, we needed a bold red in our look, and what is more bold than a pair of red pants? Contrasting topstitching mimics the simple straight lines Pippin used in his works. Specifically, the designs of the back pockets were inspired by the perspective lines used in his rooms. The handcrafted suspenders mimic the style of the men's clothes in the painting. They are detachable with buttons sewn to the waistband and buttonholes through the leather tabs. Pants were self drafted and have a working zipper and button closure, back welt pockets, yoke elastic in the back of the waist, and suspenders. Pippin liked to include striped rugs in his paintings. That was a detail we had to include! This striped pull over is easy to wear over anything from a tee to an oxford with it's exposed zipper adding a touch of modern style.

 Another element Horace Pippin enjoyed was the use of numbers. He would feature a number by including groupings of items, for example, three windows, three cracks in the wall and three chairs in a painting. We had fun with the challenge of this detail! With the exception of the bow tie, each article of clothing was drafted to be made from seven pieces; pants (front and back leg, yoke, waistband, fly guard, welt pocket, belt loops), shirt, (front, back, sleeve, collar, button placket, pocket, cuff), pull over (front, back, sleeve, collar, collar lining, zipper placket, cuff), and jacket (front, back, sleeve, collar, pocket, pocket flap, bottom band) The shirt features seven buttons (two on placket, two on collar, one on each sleeve cuff, and one on the pocket.) The pants have seven belt loops. The line art of the bow ties in his shirt reminded me of the primitive feel of many of Pippin's sketches, but has that touch of modern that I love. I used my Driftwood as my base to create a woven collar shirt typical of boy's clothing in the 1930s. The jacket is our modern take of the overcoats worn by men. Simple, clean lines keep the look fresh, while the gray bottomweight fabric pulls in the gray tones used by Pippin. Black piping at the collar and limited black topstitching were inspired by the straight, bold lines from the art. We really enjoyed creating this look and Thomas can't wait till fall is really here so he can get some good use of that jacket! (Anybody else have a kid who loves coats?!)

For more details and photos, please join me at my blog, Handmade Boy.

CKC Patterns - Van Gogh's Flowers

Thank you so much for bringing me back for one more week! I was so excited about this week so I'm happy I get to share it with you all. 
Art has always been so inspiring to me, and one artist in particular I have always been drawn to: Vincent Van Gogh. So much so, that we got a puppy earlier this year and named him Vincent. So when I saw this week's theme I instantly knew I was going to choose something to do with Van Gogh.  After a little narrowing down I settled on the idea of doing Van Gogh's Flowers. Of course, he has many more flower paintings than this, but these are the ones that inspired me most.

The first design I worked on was based off of Van Gogh's Almond Blossom painting. I'm no artist, but when I was younger I enjoyed drawing trees and branches so I got the crazy idea to attempt to recreate this beautiful painting on the dress. I worked for 6 hours on free hand painting this skirt. I didn't trace it out or practice beforehand, I just started painting and hoped for the best! Originally I wanted to paint the entire skirt but after painting for three hours and only doing a quarter of the skirt I abandoned the plan and settled on it being a focal point of the dress and not an overall design of the fabric. Hey, I only have a week, right?!? Once I completed painting the skirt, I hand sewed 60 chiffon flowers onto the branches to mimc the blossoms in the painting. The skirt turned out more beautiful than I imagined it would and while it doesn't look exactly like Van Gogh's painting, its clearly inspired by it and I've never attempted anything like before so I'm proud of the 8 hours of painting and hand sewing I put into this skirt. 

The second design I chose to work on was based off of one of Van Gogh's most recognizable series of paintings: Sunflowers. Sunflowers have always been a favorite of mine because the colors are so bold and just a beautiful golden yellow-orange hue. I was lucky enough to find the perfect color of fabric for the sunflower--I am limited to what colors my local Joann has in stock since I am not ahead of schedule for this competition so "lucky" is not an exaggeration!  I decided to make a one shoulder color blocked romper to mimic the painting and instead of adding lots of sunflowers, I made one bold flower. I also hand beaded the center of the sunflower to further draw attention to the sunflower--not that it needed any help because that flower is bold, but it really topped off the look!

The final design was one that I really decided to make last minute...as in Friday night before our photoshoot on Saturday. I somehow convinced myself that these two pieces I had completed couldn't be a flower "collection". I think I'm really just a glutton for punishment. lol. I had no idea what I was going to make but I just knew I wanted it to look like an gorgeous ruffled iris--another favorite flower of mine. After digging through my patterns I couldn't find anything that gave the look I was trying to achieve so I self-drafted this dress I envisioned and prayed for the best. It was a relief when I completed it and it both worked out and looked exactly like what I wanted; the model looks like a beautiful iris! 

I feel like I was super reckless this week with my creating. I didn't draw anything out, I didn't practice anything before hand, I bought just *enough* fabric for no mistakes, I threw all cautions to the wind and just created! I wasn't even worried or anxious hoping that things turned out! I somehow just knew it would work. Project Run and Play is changing the way I create and for that alone I am grateful for this opportunity! I am not scared to try new things anymore--like painting on fabric when you buy the end of the bolt and have no extra in case you ruin it or sewing 50 yards of tulle when I've never really worked with tulle like that before. I really hope that you guys love my designs and I make it through to the final week even though I still don't know what my week 4 is going to be--but I'm not worried! Even if I don't make it though, I am thrilled with my creations and had so much fun proving to myself that I am worthy of competing with all of these phenomenal designers! To read more about my designs this week and see more pictures, read my blog here

Lil Luxe Collection - Makers Movement

Woot! Week 3!! I’ve been waiting for the “Stroke of Genius” challenge all season! I knew exactly what I wanted to do and the pieces I wanted to make. For this challenge I chose Pop Art as my inspiration. By definition, “Pop Art is an art based on modern popular culture and the mass media, especially as a critical or ironic comment on traditional fine art values”....thank you google! I was inspired by how DIY has really exploded via Pinterest, blogs and other social media over the last decade and created this “Makers Movement” that has paved the way for artists and makers of all types to really show their skill, introduce people to the love of handmade and for some even give them the opportunity to start their own business. See where I’m going with this?! For my makes this week I really focused on craftsmanship, creative details, different techniques and texture to really show how I have evolved as not only a pattern drafter but as a garment designer and creator. Every garment in this collection was drafted from a basic block that I created based on my daughters’ measurements. I took the photos in my office and edited them in the classic pop art comic book style, removing the effects from the garments so the details were visible. You can see more photos and details with different pop art effects on my blog HERE.

I’ll start with the Jacket...oh the jacket...it was a labor of love that took three days to make. It has a classic denim look with a cropped style. It’s entirely sewn with flat felled seams and a french seam along the arm/sides for a completely polished, beautiful inside. I fell in love with this fabric "Sewing Sorrows" by Alexander Henry (It was so fitting too!), so I used it on the back yoke of the jacket and along the front panels for a fun pop of color on the inside of the jacket. I also used it for the collar stand on the back of the jacket. The front pockets are fully functional and have the same A.H. fabric on the inside of the flap. The culotte overalls have a fun bow on the front with adjustable buttoned straps. I created a fold over pleat along the sides to open/close them for easy on and off and keep with the general pleated design of the shorts. There’s also a second button on the inside of the pleat that you can’t see but it allows the front to pull closer to the waist for an even better fit. I love fitted garments and with this technique, depending on how far you space the button, the fit along the waist is adjustable. The shirt is simple woven top with an invisible zipper along the back and a two tone collar on the front, outlined in a black bias. Her look wouldn't be complete without some fun bracelets that we made together during a craft night and a notebook made with the A.H. fabric for her notes and measurements.

Now for the second look on my little "mannequin." ;) She completely enjoyed playing the part of the mannequin for this photoshoot...and now I know how to get her to stay still for pictures. All I have to say is "Be a mannequin!" and she'll stand still straight away, LOL! I designed the top to have the look of a dress form that my other daughter would be dressing/designing for in the photos. The bananas are bead embroidered (another project that caused me sleepless nights), attached two at a time with clear thread so they would not be loose. My little one loves bananas and asked if I could make them scratch and sniff, LOL...maybe another time I can figure out how to achieve that for her ;) Each layer of the skirt is individually pleated then attached to a layer of tulle over a satin yellow lining. Each of the 6 layers of knife pleats took 40 minutes to create and sew in place. Again, you can see a bigger detail of this on my blog HERE.

We had so much fun with this challenge! I really hope that through craft night with my daughters and their friends that some of these nostalgic moments crafting/sewing together will stick with them and they can pass on these skills to their children. My daughters love watching me work and it's my dearest hope and dream that I can instill a sense of love, creativity and entrepreneurship in their lives.

Sew Straight Patterns - Lunch with Monet

Hello again friends!!! OMG! Week 3?!?! Totally did not think I would make it here, the makes last week were off the chain, so thank you for keeping me on. I hope you enjoy my interpretation of this week's theme "Stroke of Genius"
Lunch with Monet
Check out my full post HERE

 My mind went in a thousand different directions chewing over what to do for this week's theme -- from period paintings, architecture, sculptures, photography and fashion itself. Trying to decide how to interpret any art into an outfit that checks all the boxes was so difficult this week. My brain was a puddle, I guess creative block was the perfect thing to get for this week's theme! LOL. I did know that I wanted Claude Monet as my inspiration early on but I was wavering based on lack of ideas to represent the father of impressionism and his art. Monet broke the barriers of interpretation which is so fitting considering Project Run and Play is based on interpretation of a theme each week. Then it hit me like a bag of bricks, what would I wear if I was going to go for lunch with this genius -- well what would I dress my model in? And "Lunch with Monet" was born. This concept of lunch with ....insert name here was inspiring and if I had more time, I probably would have sewn outfits representing multiple sources of inspiration-- Alexander McQueen, Da Vinci and Michelangelo were very high on the list. That being said I chose Monet because he evokes a feeling of happiness, calm and positivity when I look at his collections and the beauty of his works is unparalleled (in my opinion). I did have a particular painting of Claude Monet's that I took inspiration from, which was Woman with a Parasol - Madame Monet and Her Son . A beautiful piece of work that represents a gorgeous array of color and appearal in the late 19th century. I played with the creams and teals from this painting as well as took some fashion inspiration from the time period by sewing with lace and creating beautiful bell sleeves, something very indicative of that century. You can see the painting in my blog post.


I very much imagine her walking with Monet in his garden in Giverny, discussing art, fashion and politics -- very aristocratic! Then having some light lunch before sitting down in front of his garden preparing for some art lessons. Can you imagine! Art lessons from Claude Monet!?! Then quietly painting their interpretations of the current environment together until the early evening! Doesn't that sound so amazing!

 The shirt, pants and vest cardigan were all hacked from The Girls Avenue Collection. I hope to have a post up on these hacks after the finale of PRP! Because Monet was my inspiration for the outfit, I had to have a little floral and that's where the scarf came in. It's made from an old lightweight linen dress I had and was the perfect piece to represent the light, airy and floral feel of Monet. The top was very much inspired by the lady in the painting I referenced earlier, I really wanted to modernize the feel of the 19th century dress by today's trends and wearability -- it has quickly become a favorite at school! The color of the vest was inspired by the teal in the painting, the style was based on how I wanted to showcase the top while keeping it trendy. The Jean's -- well what else do you wear when you go painting? An easy wearing, comfortable yet stylish pair of denims! Right?!?!


Thats it! And a huge Thank you for having me on this week! I had so much fun! I have such an amazing finale so I really hope to see you again next week!! Happy Voting Friends! For more on this look, check out the Blog POST

Now it's your turn! Use all your art appreciation skills to vote below.  Your vote constitutes 1/3 of each designer's score.
1/3 is determined by this week's celebrity guest judge
1/3 is determined by the panel of judges

It's a good thing this week's celebrity guest judge, Anna Maria Horner, is such an experienced artist...she's going to need that talent!

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  1. The Van Gogh's Flower pieces are breathtaking! I love how they each match a specific piece of art. Good luck to all of the contestants!

  2. The Pop Art movement was so revolutionary during its time! I LOVE those pieces! Love the inspiration!

  3. I am loving the opportunity to watch such talented ladies battle it out. Such sweet inspiration for mt seamstress heart.

  4. As a mom to a boy, it’s so refreshing to see someone designing for them! I love your vision Handmade Boy!

  5. All the entrants deserve to win, but I love the Van Gogh’s flowers the most. Good luck to you all!


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