Before the surprise, an update on the sew-along: There has been a brief slowdown/ burnout/ general pause this past week for many of us working on our pants. I believe Mary Nanna has crossed the finish line, and Cindy finished but wore the final pants and wants to make more modifications. Johanna Lu and Diana suggested feeling a bit of a pause. DD, Berry, and I have been silent on the topic for a couple of weeks, though I can confirm that I will make some pattern alterations based on your thorough feedback from my last post and should have another muslin for you to see. Hopefully that muslin will reflect the right amount and quality of effort, but if not, I will push to the finish line!
The surprise: I'm working on a micro line of refashioned t-shirts with 302Designs!
Remember when I told you in February about the month I recently spent with an "anything goes" mentality? (To save you from clicking around to re-read the post, the quick summary is that I had a month off between Jan & Feb from my day job and just recorded every idea I had, and I tried to explore them all.) One of the first ideas I had during that month was to identify a company that could offer lots of raw materials for refashioning. 302Designs is an Austin company that produces screenprinted t-shirts, and I figured that they would have some overstock/ misprint/ deadstock/ mildly damaged/ otherwise unsellable shirts sitting around that they could offer a better life as a new garment. I'd met the owner, David Walker, about 18 months ago, and last month I just picked up the phone to explain that I had some ideas, and could he meet up? We scheduled some time to brainstorm, and I left the meeting a clothing designer. Say what?
Yes, it happened that fast. Even though my head is still processing this, I have forced my hands to start working on the clothes. I didn't have a specific intention in mind when I went into the meeting but the end result is that I'll be taking these 16 t-shirts, which had been sitting in a box on a shelf for a long time, from 302Designs, and I will refashion them into new garments in a micro sample line. Micro as in 6 pieces, sample as in "the only one available". David has local press contacts and will invite them to check out the goods when the line is complete.
After, "Whatchu talkin' 'bout, Willis?", and, "Me? Design clothes?", the big question for me was, "What could happen from there?" I've decided to start a company/ clothing label to see where this little project can go. I don't have any intention of leaving my day job as a corporate trainer and business consultant, and I am thrilled to have a chance to extend something I love creatively into a business, even if it is a one-woman operation (with lots of support and cheering from my friends and family). It's kind of like bringing the two things I love -- being a businessperson and sewing/ creating clothes -- into one venture. Really the most amazing opportunity!
It's important to me to set up a separate site for the company/ label, so that CleverGirl.org will continue to serve up the familiar dorkiness and angst, nearly unconditional love, lessons from sewing and life in general, the results of interesting sewing experiments, and the occasional tutorial and sew-along. :) I'll add links to the sidebar in case you're interested, but the basic blog and what I blog about won't change in an icky, uncomfortable way.
It's a good time to introduce you to Carmen:
Carmen is staying with us for a few weeks, thanks to my awesome friend and sewing guru, Shauna, to help out with the micro collection. It seemed like a better idea to sew this sample line for a body with a more average (read" BIGGER") bust size than Clementine's. I think Carmen has a 35" or 36" bust -- spicy name for a curvier gal. You can see Clementine sulking in the edge of the shot, but she'll get used to sharing the space. Plus I'll be keeping her busy, too.