Monday, May 28, 2012

Modified Style

Modified Style is an annual fashion fundraiser held here in Portland, OR.  Designers are given bags of scrap fabric and have to make a wearable outfit for the big runway show.  Proceeds from the event are then given to local nonprofit organizations. It's alway a blast, and I enjoy the challenge of making within certain restrictions. This year I opted to participate in the 24 hour challenge, which meant that not only did I need to make something (hopefully) beautiful, but I also only had overnight and the next morning to do it.
Me hard at work in the studio.
Leading up to the day, I had sketched out some ideas of what I might like to make, but without knowing the types of fabric I would be given.  I thought I wanted to make hot pants or some sort of leggings, so I was banking on getting some sort of stretchy knit material, and I did! Score.

My cutting table, a.k.a. the hardwood floor.
I ended up making a pencil skirt instead, as my outfit was quickly taking more of a tribal chic feeling, over the urban street style, as originally intended.

Me on the runway. I was the show opener!
A shot of the back side. Sorry for the blur. Guess I was strutting too fast!

Close up. Dig the war paint?
The runway show closes with a silent auction of all the wares.  Perhaps someday I'll see someone strutting down the streets of Portland in this one of a kind. Who knows?

Rescuing sad, yucky fibers -- Part 2

Here's a look at the next step in the felting process--wet felting.  I prefer to use Kiss My Face Olive Oil soap and warm water. The tray I use is like a large baking sheet, but I think it came from an auto parts store. The back textured mat is just a section of plastic no-slip flooring material from my friendly neighborhood hardware store. It's striped texture is just enough to effectively felt the fibers...with plenty of rubbing and elbow grease.

Here you can see the the fibers are starting to meld together and the batt is getting denser. But it's not done yet!
photo by Alyssa Kail
Now it's done! Amazingly, it shrunk down to about 1/3 of it's original size.

photo by Alyssa Kail
So, I rinsed it and hung it up to dry.  It currently resembles a misshapen animal pelt, and I'm not sure what I'll make with it at this point, but I'll be sure to post the finished product.