Wednesday, June 18, 2008

July screensaver

July starts to sizzle so it's time to cool down in a dark forest, deep inland, on the island of Hawaii. It's evening glamour, done up very hip -- gorgeous soft suede shoes, pretty linen handmade camisole, rugged, slashed denim shorts, fine leggings, delicate socks, and jeweled choker. The background began with a geometric pattern from my newest find in Paris, a fabulous paper store "filosofi - CULTURE DU PAPIER" at 68 rue de Grenelle, with inspiring hand screened Swiss papers, unique graphics, colors and textures and wonderful notebooks. Then I layered on top a photo of a tropical painting from a crazy shop on Rue Haute in Brussels.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Denim shorts - DIY

... a pair of cargo pants have been cut, slashed, spray painted and bleached -- one of the DIY projects in "Denim Revolution" -- sketched above as a swimsuit cover-up or photographed layered over leggings in the book...and naturally, she's reading..."Denim Revolution".

DIY denim short-shorts

Summer is upon us, so here's another pair of DIY denim short-shorts. Edged with Broderie Anglaise they say Mediterranean summer and I call them the Saint Tropez shorts after the mod fashion scene that happens there every summer.
To make these shorts you need a pair of jeans that fit well on the bun, with a button front closure and a watch pocket. The sturdy basic 100% cotton denim works best and they should be well worn so that the indigo won’t fade on the white lace. In addition to basic sewing materials you also need 3 yards of 1” wide, white cotton Broderie Anglaise edging. Study the photos and read all the instructions before you start. If you don't have a sewing machine you can hand sew everything, just sew securing and knot your threads snugly so they won't unravel.

1. Cut the Pant Legs: Lie the jeans on a table, and with tailor’s chalk draw a cutting line about 3” below your natural waistband, or just above the back pockets. Then draw the pant length. My pants, an adult size medium, after they were cut measure 4 1/2” on the side seams with a 1” long pant length at the crotch.
Key -- My jeans are an adult size medium. Your jeans need to be shaped to fit you, so use my measurements as a guide, and then adjust to your body and jeans. If you aren't exactly sure about the cutting line, try your jeans on with the chalk line and check the shape, alter a bit longer or shorter to ease into the fit you love. Cut a bit longer, try on again and check the fit, until you have it the proportion you like. Once you are satisfied, lay your shorts on the table and check that your side seams and inseams are exactly the same measurements - ½” off in mini-shorts is glaring!

2. Cut the Waistband: Cut the front waist band off just below the bottom seam of the waistband. Then cut the watch pocket off, all around the outer sewing edge. Finish the cut edge of the shorts with a machine zigzag stitch using denim blue thread. Machine wash, dry and press all the denim pieces and the shorts.

3. Assemble the Waistband: Smoothly pin the waistband (with the front button closed)to the front of the shorts, aligning the top of the waistband with the top edge of the shorts. Baste and remove the pins. Machine zigzag stitch with denim blue thread securely in place (this can also be hand sewn.) Zigzag stitch the watch pocket on the right hip.
4. Trim with Broderie Anglaise: Pin lace all around the inside of the cuff aligned ½” below the cuff edge. Baste, remove pins and zigzag stitch along top edge of lace with ochre thread on the denim and white thread on the lace. Repeat around the waistband, with it aligned 1/2" above the top edge.
Wear it on the beach, as a bathing suit cover up, with a sweatshirt or loose top, ballet slippers, thongs, all kinds of flats or barefoot.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Denim by Première Vision

Denim by Première Vision for Fall/Winter 09/10; Les Docks, in Paris, June 4/5

DPV jumped from their "first ever" exhibit last December into a MUST event for anyone who is a serious contender in the denim world. Gathered in three halls were the global market leaders – the weavers, finishers and denim accessory manufacturers - not just showing their wares, but mixing, meeting and collaborating with the designers and manufacturers. There was this terrific will to be inventive and creative utilizing their fine quality, skills and innovation, all in the manner demanded by the denim culture. Within the hip set-up that the organizers created, a happening and buzz of synergy built and I walked away with a bundle of thoughts and materials. What I loved the MOST - the hand woven organic selvage denim in indigo shot with brown and the sincerely washed, patched and hard-worn denim. When these two opposites, the unwashed and washed denim are mixed together into one look, like a washed jacket casually worn with indigo jeans, it becomes more interesting, because of how if reflects change, our heritage and realities. Last year the crowd was dressed in one mold - unwashed indigo, this year it all changed, and there was a parade of feminine or tough, washed and worn or dark indigo and unwashed, tight, loose, cropped or baggy – denim clothing has evolved into individuals making sincere, personal statements. It’s accidental, its perfect, it’s fashion blossoming in Paris.
Here is a glimpse on video of what was happening. Displays by Pierre-Louis Mascia – past – present and future; samples from A.N.G.E.L.O. Vintage Place; video from Albig by the artist Jean-Marie Albet; music -I don’t know the DJs, and the photo of the display with overalls is by Stéphane Kossmann/© Première Vision SA.
... the focus on organic and re-cycling appeared even in unexpected ways, like sunflower seeds handed out by the Italian woven tape resource,

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Aussi Rouge Que Possible, As Red As Can Be

Aussi Rouge Que Possible (As Red As Can Be) at The Musée des Arts Décoratifs, Paris, is a small not to be missed temptation. A visual and symbolic feast is spread out with rooms themed by voluptuousness, power, danger and pleasure, among others, and every shade of red, all stylishly mixed from different eras. The Parisian sixth sense that appears as much in the text as the objects creates plenty of fresh fashion inspiration. Naturally, I loved the sketches by Schiaparelli. Here is a tiny glimpse of the exhibit.