Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Funds Vs. Ambition

Sometimes the funds don't match the ambition. It's a sad but true story for many and is a constant struggle for me. You won't find anyone more dedicated than me, but you can not always tell this because I can't afford to do as much as I would like. I'd love to create 2-5 collections a year made of the exact fabric I have in mind (beautiful silks, satins, wools, high quality cottons, etc.), I'd love to be able to create my own textiles, I'd love to be able to be a real, serious designer who does trade shows and wholesale orders. But right now I do realize that I may not seem like a "serious" designer to many because I make NO money and therefore have a difficult time funding my various projects. What many do not realize is that whenever I do a collection or a show, it is 100% self funded, usually money saved from my day job. To save that money I rarely go out, almost never eat out, and rarely purchase new clothing for myself. I was raised in a poor family so I am used to having no money, but when you are trying to do projects, it gets rather difficult.

An unfortunate thing about any business, specifically fashion is that the successful people usually come from a rich background, so they have the funds to go bigger, faster. This was not true, "back in the day" when it seemed to be mostly about talent and dedication, but in today's market, there are SOOOOOOOOOO many people trying to get into the fashion world that it has become much more difficult to move forward without already having a name or a lot of money. Hence, the celebrity designer. Even locally, I have found that usually the more "successful" designers are not necessarily more talented, but have more money to play around with.

So of course, the question is "Why not just take out a loan?" I absolutely plan on doing this, but not until I think I can get enough business to be able to start paying it back. If I was to take out a loan in this economy and current state of mind about fashion, I would just get behind in payments and really screw things up for myself. So right now I am just working on getting my name out, building up a better portfolio, and hopefully getting custom orders. I also want to get some small wholesale orders. I hate starting small because i have such big dreams, but I'm trying to be realistic rather than living in an optomistic delusion.

So what is the reason for this blog? I am asking any reader who may be interested in my work to help me raise funds for my next collection by purchasing some clothing or hair accessories from me. I have INSANELY low priced dresses at YesPleaseMore PopUp Boutique and the Mod Livin PopUp Boutique. I also have custom orders available on or through me. More interested in accessories? I also have hair accessories available at, the two pop up boutiques, as well as several stores/salons around town. All purchases will go towards my next collection. Help me share my vision with Denver and get some great pieces while you are at it!

Thank you for reading!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Fashion Blogs

It is no secret that I absolutely adore fashion blogs. I love local ones, ones about street style, personal fashion diaries, high fashion recaps, lookbooks, foreign language ones, all of them. Well, maybe not ALL of them, but lets just say a lot of them. I thought I would share a list of all the blogs I read for anyone interested in fashion blogs as well. If you have any amazing ones that I missed let me know so I can check it out!

-The Intersection
-Style Bubble
-Style Rookie
-Fashion Folio
-Bobbin Talk
-Buffalo Exchange Colorado
-Jak and Jil
-Hanneli Mustaparta
-New Dress A Day
-The Sartorialist
-Garance Dore
-Models off Duty
-Teen Vogue
-Stil in Berlin
-Copenhagen Street Style
-Mattresses and Metal
-Easy Fashion

Here's some pictures from some of my favorite fashion blogs:

Style Bubble

Style Rookie

Jak and Jil

Thursday, June 10, 2010

New Collection

My last full collection was released almost a year ago so naturally I have been feeling like I really need to get some new work out into the world. I have had many possible collections in mind, but it's all a matter of when to release what. I finally decided what the inspiration of my next collection for Spring 2011 will be. I'm going to keep the exact details under wraps for now, but it will consist of extremely cute, very wearable summer clothing. Nothing too high end, just really really fun. This collection will be more basic than what I am moving my company towards but I really just wanted to do a collection that I could have a lot of fun with and save the more high fashion pieces for the next collection, which will probably be for fall.

More details on the collection to follow, but here are some inspiration pictures for now.

Summer Boutiques and Other Fun Things

This summer is full of fun events and things to check out. I really love summer because it means outdoor music festivals and cute summer dresses. In a week is the Westword Music Festival which I looooooove because it is a whole day full of amazing local bands.

Also this summer is the opening of two pop-up boutiques featuring amazing local goods. One boutique called YesPleaseMore opened last Friday and is located on the second floor of the Denver Pavilions right next to Barnes and Noble. The 16th St. Mall is a fantastic location so I'm really excited to see how it does. I have Birds Nest Accessories pieces there, including a brand new product which is not even on my Etsy account yet. I also am selling some dresses from past collections there as part of summer clearance. The prices are insanely low, so I encourage you to check it out before they pack the store up and move to a new location in the beginning of September.

The other boutique is a also a pop-up store, but there is not a specific date that it will close down. The store will be open for as long as it is successful. This store was started by Tran Wills from The Fabric Lab and is in the upper floor of Mod Livin on Colfax. This store also features select goods from local artists/designers. I am also featured in this store. I have Birds Nest Accessories items there and then clothing from my Mad Men inspired fashion show that occurred at Mod Livin.

Here is a link to the article featured in the Denver Post about the boutique:

Another fun thing coming up is Style Wars 2 on June 25th which is part of Denver Art Museum's Untitled event. The theme of the night is Sloth. Style Wars relates to sloth because we are not allowed sewing machines, just things we can do by hand. For anyone not familiar with Style Wars, it is a fashion competition where the contestants have twenty minutes to create fashion from a rack of supplies that we do not see ahead of time with little more than safety pins and tape. Here is a link to the article Denver Post wrote about the event last time.

At the end of July is a fashion competition called FashionFest. I will post details about this event once I get them.

Tricia Hoke Fashion Show

One of my absolute favorite local designers is Tricia Hoke. I can honestly say that that was not always the case because until her last collection I just didn't get her, but she won me over big time a little more than a year ago. Her collection of a few dresses and pantsuits that morphed into several different pieces had me absolutely floored. I loved one piece so much that I bought it right away. I still wear it constantly. I can't even imagine designing pieces that turn into several more pieces so her design aesthetic has me fascinated.

Tonight was the release of her new collection Cher Ami, which was inspired by pigeons and sweatpants. When you hear her background story about her inspiration it really makes you want to love the collection. As usual, most pieces transformed, which is always so fun to watch. It's a little difficult to wear many of her transformations if you are not model skinny, but each piece usually has at least one way to wear it that does not require you to be a size 2. Please visit her website at

Project Runway Update

I realized I have not updated this since I sent my Project Runway application in. For anyone who reads this, but perhaps has not had a chat with me in a while, I did get a call back, which was really awesome. They called me on a Tuesday night and the audition was on Sunday morning, so I had to get all of my clothing together and all of my plans together in just a few days. It was stressful, but in a good sort of way. It felt great to have just been asked to show up. The call back was in Seattle, which is a beautiful city. I did not make any tourist plans ahead of time because ideally I wanted to be sitting in a waiting room the entire time. The nights before I left, I decided what items to bring and went over them with a fine tooth comb making sure every teeny tiny little seam was sewn right and that there were no stains. I knew from watching the show that they will look up close at items at times so it better look perfect from close up as well as afar. Another thing I spent considerable time planning was my wardrobe. They specifically said no black, white, or stripes, and guess what my ENTIRE wardrobe consists of? I was really not a big fan of the outfits I had to put together with no black or white, but perhaps in the future I will just rebel.

I made sure to bring my designs with me in a carry-on suitcase because if I had to wear the same outfit over and over, whatever, but if I didn't have my clothing, I was there for no reason. So basically, to cut to the chase, I arrived, I got to my hotel, which was right across the street from the hotel the auditions were in, and settled in. The next day I went across the street with my clothing, prepared for the worst, but hoping for the best. I waited in a waiting room with several other designers, including one from Denver. To be honest, I absolutely hated most of the other designer's clothing. There were a few good ones, but some of them were really mediocre. I hope they didn't get on. A lot of the people before me made comments that the judges were harsh and ripped them out, so I prepared myself for that, but was pretty confident that would not be the case. I can't explain why, but I just felt like I would be okay. I wasn't even nervous. I felt really anxious to get it over with though. What was supposed to happen would happen I figured, just so long as the judges did not hate me.

It turns out that they did not hate me. The judges actually liked my designs quite a bit. There were comments about how well made they were and positive comments on the design of them as well. They even gave me some great tips and asked some difficult questions that I am very glad they made me verbalize. One of the hardest questions I was asked was why I wanted to be on the show. I probably botched this answer horribly because my mind went blank. I never really scripted an answer for this question ahead of time even though I knew they would ask something similar to it. At the end of the interview I left feeling really good about how I did though. I knew that there was definitely a good chance they would not ask me to come back based on physical appearance, etc., but I knew that the people who really mattered to me had felt positively about me, and that was enough for me. I would rather be a professional fashion designer than a t.v. star, which I think anyone who knows me already knows.

As it turned out, I did not get a second call back, but they did ask me to try out again next year, so I think I will. If I do not get any further in the process that time though, I will probably not try again. Not because I don't want to do it, but because I suspect a huge part of them not picking me is physical appearance and general personality, and I'm kind of stuck with those. If it's not right three times, why would it be right the fourth? But hey, I'm thinking positively for next time. I know I have what it takes, it is just a matter of showing them the same thing. And I already know what my video audition will be too!

On the day that I had open I did a lot of fun tourist things. I went on an underground tour, went to the aquarium, visited Pikes Place Market, and went on a bus tour of the city. It was all a ton of fun, I just hope that next time I can bring someone with me because it will be much more fun with company.

Here's a picture of Seattle:

Here are some pictures from the Seattle Underground Tour:

This is the aquarium, which was fun. I got to see them feed a gigantic octopus.

And here is the ever so famous Pikes Place Market.

I didn't take any of these pictures because I tend to prefer to blend in with the locals rather than stick out as a tourist.