4.14.2012

my own little runway


early this morning, i sent my stunning leggy gorgeous friend off with ten creations to wear at a host of coachella parties this weekend.  best dressed is in the eye of the beholder, but she will certainly be the brightest thing there.

to be honest i don't know much about coachella, apparently it's like sundance for music, complete with many swank VIP pool parties and, you know, scenes.  even in my ignorance i was honored when she shyly asked if she could borrow something.  that someone wants to wear something i've made is always astounding!  because really, the pleasure is all mine-- as she emerged from my closet in dress after dress you could've knocked me over with a feather.  for one, it's surreal when another body slips something on, something i've painstakingly made to fit my body perfectly... AND IT FITS THEM.  effortlessly!  of course i know that's the point of RTW sizing, but i mean, we're not sewing RTW here.  part of the reason we sew is because off-the-rack doesn't fit our curves (as daughter fish points out, badonkadonks are varied and specific).  the hours spent getting the bubbles out that seem so particularly mine, the seam ripping and cursing... in the end i expect the dress to fit Moi And Moi Only.

but they just fell differently on Stunner Friend.  as we constantly assured each other how happy the whole dressup session made us, i told her it was like i was an artist, and seeing my clothing on her was like seeing my paintings in a museum.  it made me look at it in a new light.  a high beam spotlight.  

i'm pleased with a lot of what i make now, i think it's good enough to wear out in public and all, but seeing it on Stunner made me feel like a rockstar.


she has about ten parties to go to, and a dress for every single one if she wishes.  but i feel bad taking all of your dresses! she worried.  girl, the most i'm doing this weekend is sewing and maaaaaaybe going out to a movie. TAKE THEM, i assured her, lamenting my closet full of party dresses that never go out and no normal gear.  but that's your point of view, you have to create from that,  she declared.

it's true.  i don't like making everyday clothing.  and if i sew for pleasure, shouldn't i be making what i like?


here's where i could get behind sewing for others.  but then how do you make that jump... once the dress leaves, it doesn't come back?!  i did it once before and i pine for that dress like a bottle of chateau margot that went bad before it could be sipped.  i still think about how i might break in, knock her unconscious and steal it ask nicely for it back.  and by the way, one of Stunner's dresses is going home with her, the salvatore mad men dress (sans tie). she fell in love with it as i was draping it, her birthday was approaching, i was a little drunk, whaddayagonnado. actually, i told her i would make her something else, being far to greedy to offer it up.  but it's just perfect on her, and when she walked out in it i knew it was hers.

to have a little storefront on main street.  or a list of devoted clients that come by the studio. 

for now i'll dream about the weekend adventure my dresses are having, and sew up some more.  what are you daydreaming about?

57 comments:

  1. Aww. Exciting! I have one friend who's similar in size (if not exactly shape) to me and I threw a bunch of things at her to try on last year sometime. Really a strange feeling.

    I think I could work with the small list of devoted clients. Especially if they let me take photos for the blog first...

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    1. oh, photos would be a requirement. we'd just tell them it's for the "portfolio".

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  2. I also have trouble making every day wear. I have a closet full of party dresses that hardly ever get worn, actually most have never been worn. I try not to feel weird about it... Every now and then I'll go in there and consider putting some of them on etsy, but then I make the mistake of trying them on first. haha

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    1. exactly! it's like, you'd have to chain your frocks up until the moment you've sold them. maybe sew the openings shut so you can't try them on.

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  3. That's so exciting! If Stunner's not too shy, maybe you could snap a couple of pics for us when she returns! (Sidenote: suuuuuuuuuper jealous that she's at Coachella!!)

    You are an artiste, madam! What a fun experience to see your work on someone else!

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    1. thanks girl! Stunner promised me pics....

      i was jealous too, but mainly because i wanted to dress up :). note to self: must learn about new music.

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  4. I'm sort of working on my Little Black Dress, and imagining seeing this thing I fitted on myself fit somebody else definitely feels weird. It must be weirder in reality.
    But I'm daydreaming about my dream home. Especially libraries. And light wood kitchen. And orange bathroom based around our orange kitchen. Blame Pinterest.

    And yes, if Stunner agrees, I'd love to see your dresses on her. And you. And see for myself.

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    1. i love your daydreams!

      maybe i should have a "on me"/"on Stunner" photoshoot. just to see how different bodies react.

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  5. that sounds super exciting! I'm all about only sewing for myself - no not you, ME! thankyouverymuch! But I can totally imagine the slightly confused elation at seeing your work on someone else. Maybe there is something to that whole unselfish sewing after all......

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    1. it really is a new and strange way of thinking for me... and i can't blame the cocktails, cause i'm still giddy about it with my morning coffee...

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  6. You pose a lot of interesting thoughts. I think I feel the same, that somehow something you have sewn for yourself would naturally only fit on you. We need a follow-up post about your dresses' adventures at coachella, and if your friend gets any interesting comments on her wardrobe.

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  7. i have a closet full of party dresses, but i wear them all the time, hehe.. even to the grocery shopping or taxes day.. but maybe i'm just nuts..
    i'm daydreaming about polka dot capri pants and mai tais at noon

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    1. you are a PRIME EXAMPLE and something to strive for! i was all, DUH, mokosha wears frocks everywhere!

      i want to be like you when i grow down.

      i hope you made those pants. i know you had that drink.

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  8. Such a fun way to think about it - your dresses having adventures! What a compliment that she wanted to borrow something from you - and I wish I was your friend to be able to borrow something from you, too!

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    1. who knows, maybe i'll open up a borrow store instead of selling things, then they'll always return!

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  9. You ARE a rock star! I'm not much of a sewist (yet! I've got big plans this summer!), but I would think that it's pretty amazing seeing something you made on someone else. I have a hard time knitting for others sometimes, though, especially something really complicated that I'll never knit again. I still think about that shawl I made my cousin for my wedding. Does she wear it? Is it crumpled in a ball at the bottom of a drawer? Are there moths there? It must be so frightened :)

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    1. you seriously better not be taunting me with this whole Summer Of Sewing. don't make me come out there.

      the thought of one of your airy shawls possibly crumpled in a drawer will give me nightmares. i feel the same way-- is that green silk gown collecting dust in the back of a closet?

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  10. I had one friend who had exactly the same measurements as me, but did she ever look different. Her chest measurement was all boob and mine was all back. She could fit into my clothes, but they looked like hell on her, and vice versa.

    How nice that your dresses are going to parties, if only they could talk and tell you about their adventures. Could make interesting short stories, if you care to write them.

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    1. this is funny, our hips are same in inches, i think, but mine is all in the trunk! it totally affects the hemline.

      i love the short story idea. you have my wheels turning...

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    2. i can only imagine what evil genius you would come up with, writing a story from your dress's point of view. ElleC, what inspiration!

      also: love this post. so much to think about.

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    3. thanks girl! and i will be thinking up a story..

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  11. Taking the creative leap to put ourselves out there on MAIN ST .... Such a difficult question to answer Oona !! Do we want to make the leap? Do we need to take the plunge into the deep end? Is the stress and anxiety of needing to please clients worth the effort?

    OR !?!?!?!?

    Could it ALL be EVERYTHING we've EVER dreamed of ? AND EVEN MORE !!!

    LOVING your Blog and your dresses are to die for Oona .... I will now be following it/YOU regularly.

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    1. why thankya ponzu!!

      that third paragraph is the kicker... maybe it would be AMAZING.

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  12. Jealous! Dita Von teese, the patron saint of decadent over-dressing attends Coachella! Your partyeear is in Fab company! You should be there too....

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    1. ha! love this! i guess i'll sort of be there, in the stitches and seams...

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  13. You sell the idea of a little shop with specific clientele very well...and I LOATHE sewing for others. ha.

    Those dresses pushed up together like that, all vomity rainbow brite, makes me exceedingly happy.

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    1. maybe that should be my store name? Rainbow Brite's Vomit Shoppe.

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  14. Why aren't I going to a bunch of parties requiring awesome, sassy dresses this weekend? Your designs are perfect for the hipster gatherings she'll be attending! And I am amazed when something fits me and also a friend. It really doesn't happen often. On those occasions, I feel like a "real" designer.

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    1. because you are working on muslin number three thousand and six!!!! if that doesn't make you a real designer, i don't know what does.

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    2. Ha! OK, I'll take that analysis :-)

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  15. Two of my good friends are sisters, and the three of us can all wear some of the same clothes, despite us all being humonstrously different in body type. We run a range of about four/five inches, two cup sizes, and our hip:waist:shoulder and torso:leg ratios vary wildly, but because of the differences in how we all wear our clothes, we can operate out of the same closet (and set off completely different aspects of the same clothes). Too bad we all have different sized feet, that's far less negotiable.

    As for the surprise at having self-made or -fitted clothes fit another: I mean, it's just as surprising that the "standard" of a ready-to-wear size fits all right on both us and another, it's just because we're all so used to making allowances for the ways in which that fit varies that it seems less amazing to us, right?

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    1. UGH too many sentences. Point being: it's awesome how much more versatile garments are than we think. It's also awesome sharing things with those we love.

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    2. not too many sentences in the slightest!

      yes, RTW fits so many people, but a lot of times it fits so many peeps poorly-- so i was shocked that something correctly fitted to me looked good on her!

      ah, sisters. all i had was brother beast growing up. not much closet sharing there.

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  16. Although it would be a lot of work to make clothes for others, there's a huge satisfaction in seeing the other so amazingly happen in your designs. I'm sure you felt it when you say your friend try on your clothes. That would make all the effort worth it :)

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    1. yes, it took the dress to a different level to see it fit someone else. it gave all the darts and tucks validity!

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  17. I have a badonkadonk. Or as my husband dubbed it, "ethnic booty". I'm told its one of my best assets... pun intended.

    I know what you mean, though, about other people wearing things you've made to fit yourself. So far, that hasn't happened to me.

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  18. Your friend's gonna look all kinds of awesome! What a rare and beautiful gift to be able to offer her an ensemble of totally unique, stunning, hand crafted party dresses. Perhaps you'll get a few clients out of the deal...if you want them:) I could see an Oona storefront with a little sitting area with lady-like cocktails and tea, while you stitch in the back.

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    1. how bout: moonshine and pork sliders!

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  19. Lucky friend! :) I know what you mean though; while I haven't reached that state of awesomeness in my sewing yet, I do feel that way about my paintings, and it's like giving up a child when one walks away... I'm not sure I could put the same amount of heart and soul into pieces I knew weren't going to live with me forever :)

    Being able to lend your masterpieces though... that's a beautiful thing! I hope you get lots of pics of your creations marching about! :)

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    1. ooh, i used to give paintings away. that's hard.

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  20. How exiting your dresses are making a debut at Coachella!
    If only you could go along so your friend could just point
    at you when she gets a compliment and say "She made it!!!"
    You'll be going prof in no time!

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    1. i would have to practice not ducking for cover when pointed at!!!

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  21. You are so nice to sew for someone else (I won't) and let people borrow your stuff (I don't like to). I'm a jerk!!!!

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    1. yes, the jerk that's hosting months of sewalongs, giving advice and curating groups... GOD miss creepy. think about others once in awhile.

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  22. I think you need to add this to your resume: Rainbow Brite's Vomit Shoppe (2012-?), dresses debuted at Coachella...

    I, too, adore making pretty, impractical dresses that then languish in my closet, which is why I love the idea of StephC at 3hourspast's Frock Out night. I'm pretty sure when (if ever!) we meet up, we will both need to wear something fabulously inappropriate for fighting off other fabric shoppers.

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    1. shall i use a fancy font for that resume? something with plenty of curls?

      oh yes. shopping day dress: TO THE NINES. we'll be completely unable to bargain, but we will be resplendent.

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  23. Isn't it exciting to think of your dresses swirling around out there, and then to know that you can get them back. Some creations are too personal to let go of, but if you ever start up that little store, I'm sure you could adopt out some of your art!

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    1. i like it, adopting... adopt shop... sounds so much better than renting!

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  24. It's like a different form of the magic closet, an opportunity to see your dresses from another perspective than the mirror. You do sew beautiful clothes, this gave you the opportunity to see how it all looks to us.

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    1. what a wonderful way to put it, you've nailed what i felt. thank you!

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  25. oh what would the world be if we didn't have party dress, color all the time Oona? Your *closet* is a piece of art! Your blog is one of the galleries. You *are* creating from that point of view... and you're a good storyteller, too. It's all like performance art and I love it. But wow, I'm just dying of curiosity to see pics of Stunner Friend in your dresses. Insider scoop on lalaland!

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    1. could i have this comment etched in gold at the front of my couture house?

      inside scoop (hopefully) to come...

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  26. Oooh lucky friend - the stuff you make is gorgeous! I'm not sure any of my stuff would be good enough to wear to fancy parties by me, let alone a friend.

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    1. i think your ceylon says otherwise :)

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  27. Happy Friday Oona. I left you a little blog love on my site so head on over :)

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i thankya truly for taking the time to comment, i love a good conversation-- and hope you know my thanks are always implied, if not always written!