The Leg Silhouette

MPlooksJAN-169I recently did a buying trip for Spring 2014. Buying trips grow my perspective on micro trends that last a season or two, and macro trends that can last years, possibly decades. Right now we’re in a skinny bottom macro era, likely combined with a high rise macro era. I first noticed it in LA, 2010. American Apparel took out huge billboards for the high rise skinny jean. It’s starting to pick up steam and will likely stick with us for a good decade. I think back to Toronto, 2006 when flare pants came back. I would say they were still available until last year at many major retailers. Let’s call that a 15 year stretch.

What I like about the high rise skinny is what it does to the create vertical line. When the legs look thin, we look taller. The top can be full and straight without darting or belting and the line will be uninterrupted from head to toe. If you stack that with a bun, toque, a choker necklace or a long strand, it would be an enhanced vertical line. The low rise cuts us horizontally at the wider part of our body. That creates horizontal line, not the most flattering for 90% of us.

I don’t like new cars. It takes me a long time to warm up to the design. But once I do, I can appreciate the elements of design involved. I suspect that it will take some of us time to warm up to the concept of the high rise skinny. But we’ll likely have a decade to do so. Next up, shoulder pads.

p.s. you can always come in and play with our skinnies. We love to help find what works for you. If the Mink Pink floral denim skinny (left) is too patterned, we have all the solids covered for you too.

Line Launch 101

  • design school: checkshapeimage_1 (4)
  • inspiration: check
  • Alva dress form: check
  • Bernina sewing machine: check
  • jet-threading auto tension Babylock serger: check
  • pattern-paper: __________
  • work table: ____________
  • coverstitch machine: ________
  • sell blind-hemmer in back of shop to buy coverstitch:_______
  • renovate back are to accomodate work table: _______
  • sketches: _______________
  • production business case: ____________
  • labels: draft miter edge, 2 colour print draft completed

Lots to do but I started to tackle them one by one. I am making progress inch by inch so that someday I will have something in the store with my own label on it. Speaking of labels, I drafted a version and while it is in my nature to procrastinate a final decision I am trying to live by the edict that the best idea is an executed idea.

If I decide to change the brand identity later, it’s only a question of money.
For now, I just need to inch it forward.

It All Starts with the Dressform

P1030883In Just USA jeans, it means you will fit a size 3 if your waist is approximately 23” inches around. But if we’re talking about Skunkfunk, you’re probably a 27 – 29” inch waist.

Every fashion brand decides at some point what dress form or block to use when they construct their garments. If the line is using old dress forms made from measurements garnered from the 1930’s (no joke), then you’ll probably feel like an overgrown amazon goddess when you put on one of these dresses. If you put on a dress from say, Skunkfunk, which appears to use a dressform designed from the newer measurement study, then you’ll feel like a wonderfully shaped modern woman of average to tall proportion.

So each line, uses different dress forms. At our store, we will have a good idea which lines will suit your fit. Now if you find you love the look of a line but not the fit, your tailor can work miracles. Just remember to fit the largest part of your body and have them take in the rest. You can’t fix a piece that is too small but you can always take in a piece that is too wide or too long. Once you make peace with tailoring, your apparel world will open up.

Emerald Green

Four years ago I had just finished my first and only class in Colour Theory. I learned to mix paint, every hue and value I would ever need. It was fascinating. It changed my life. I look at autumn trees differently now. I see light and dark where I before. I wear colour now. Thank you Doug Meyer.

Prior to design school, I knew of Pantone. But I had no idea they chose a “Color of the Year”. And I had no idea their colour swatch books cost more than a pair of Louboutins and are the only things that should be kept in a dark, dry closet (thank you Miss V.).

Without digressing into the merits (or lack thereof) of having a COTY, let’s look at this year’s colour. It is made of 99% cyan, zero magenta, 69% yellow and zero black. Pretty pure colour as far as the primaries go. Pantone offers several adjectives to the image: Lively. Radiant. Lush. It’s the colour for babies born in May, my Mom and oldest brother for example. It is the pervasive colour found in nature. To the human eye, it occupies the most space in the visual spectrum than any of its colleagues. It is apparently the second most favoured colour (blue is first). It is the colour of the heart chakra (got me there, it thought it was red). The Irish, I am certain, invented it and then loaned it to the transportation industry (I do hope they negotiated royalty fees).

As a political junkie, I am not sure … yet … how this emerald colour reflects the current era’s socio-economic conditions. Is it an obsession with financial issues around the world? Is it a reflection of the “vibrant” level of social media around the world? Or perhaps it is more literal than subtle and the folks at Pantone simply love emeralds more than their peer stones.

As it pertains to fashion, we can expect to see a lot of emerald green this year and into next while the textile mills scramble to mix dye to fit the whims of designers paying homage to the COTY. I can visualize large eyelet patterned short sleeved blouses, metal-toed flats, chunky bracelets, and maybe even a peplum dress. Since mint is already so prominent in the spring lineup, a deeper hue will not be a stretch.

I quite like the colour, to look at. It would be a first but I would welcome having it represented in my wardrobe. So I will hunt around for something to share with you at the store. I would love to hear from you: how many pieces of emerald green do you currently have in your wardrobe? And if you have none, will you be considering one for this year?