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Archive for August, 2008

Vegas Fashion

Fashion Show Mall

I have been lucky enough to be able to travel to some popular fashion spots this summer. It was exciting to be able to go to different parts of the US to get a good view of trends for my senior collection. I have been to Portland, Las Vegas, Chicago, and will be going to New York here soon.

Just a few weeks ago I was in Las Vegas for 10 whole days! This meant I could go shopping, sketch, get color ideas, and note the interesting way the designers manipulate the fabric. I went window shopping pretty much everyday. My favorite spot for this kind of “research” shopping is The Fashion Show Mall. With a fashion show that rises out of the floor (everything is a show in Las Vegas!), this place is a mecca of shops. I feel it has the most variety featuring high end to low end stores. When doing research you can’t just relay on the high end stores like Neiman Marcus or designer boutiques to get a complete picture. You have to understand where the trends are going. Whether they are widespread enough to have hit the discount stores like Target, or if they are still in designer stores. A mall like this one has it all, making my research a bit easier.

The Wynn is another fashion sleuthing haven. I found some great inspiration visiting the Chanel store there. They had done some amazing fabric detailing. Some of the sweaters on display had small chain that was woven into the knit fabric so it made the sweater completely two toned. I also tend to get a lot of inspiration from shoes! I don’t know if it’s when I look at shoes I design as if I am making an outfit to match, or if they just set a look. There were SO many garments that used large overwhelming prints combining odd florals and geometric shapes. I was really intrigued by the combination of prints in a really cool dress that had a leopard and floral combination. And animal prints have stuck around and seem to be getting larger! There was this amazing Dior belt that was really inspiring… it was made in a zebra fur print with a huge grommet with a bar and chain to hold the belt closed. Another trend that is sticking around and I feel keeps getting more and more exaggerated are garments constructed in a origami pattern. It seems to be in all the high end clothing, from pockets that look like middle school fortune tellers to interesting design lines with lots of pleats and gathering.

Las Vegas shopping has definitely inspired me to sketch a lot of garments for my senior collection and give me a good view on what trends are hot! If you get to Las Vegas, be sure to fit in some’s some of the very best around!


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Well, we all make mistakes….and here’s your chance to see a few of ours! Take a look at our Quick Take #3 and you will find that we are FAR from perfect! Chances are it takes us a few tries to get a spot right….along with a few laughs to boot. Glad Matt (our video producer) is patient with us. He’s been stashing these aside just for you all to see. Enjoy!!

Allyce and Melissa


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Party On DIYStyle!

DIYStyle Party 5

We have had such a busy summer, including the long awaited trip to Chicago! This event was something that DIYStyle has been planning and looking forward to for months. Our very first DIYStyle party was held during the American Sewing Guild convention…..we thought it would be a great place to debut this new event.

The Chicago trip was a BLAST! At the party there were four different project stations…a panty station, where we had more material than you could have wanted (courtesy of Vogue Fabrics!) including our lingerie pattern for making the scalloped edged panties. Another station was distressing denim using sand paper and everyday objects to create an interesting look. A really popular station involved reconstructing tee’s. Digging into a huge pile of tee shirts, attendees made anything from a purse to a skirt to a tubetop. The last station was our DIYStyle eco friendly tote. Overall, people loved the day long sew-in and we personally think it was a hit with the girls our age who came.

DIYStyle Party 4

Many girls were combining supplies from different stations to be a creative as possible. We also had a great DJ (thanks Matt–we never knew you could DJ too!) that made the whole event really upbeat. And to make it even more exciting, we had two fashion shows that featured original designs from local Chicago designers. It was so much fun for us to greet people at the door and show off our DIYStyle McCalls patterns (we were wearing our own designs of course). Some at the party had never sewn in their life and they loved the experience! We hope everyone who attended had fun creating and partying. Stay posted…there may be more DIYStyle parties coming to other cities soon.

DIYStyle Party 1

The rest of the trip was good too. We even watched Pati Palmer (Melissa’s Mom) give a keynote speech to hundreds of people at the convention, where she was also inducted into the ASG Sewing Hall of Fame! All of us had a chance to do the tourist thing too, walking Michigan Avenue and around downtown Chicago. It is a really beautiful historic city and we can’t wait to go back to visit again!!

Thanks to everyone in Chicago and to the people who came to the DIYStyle Party…hope to see you all (sewing) again soon!!

Allyce & Melissa


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The Trib

Hey All…..

You may already know that we held our first DIYStyle Party in Chicago a couple of weeks ago. During all of the commotion, a reporter from the Chicago Tribune visited with us, and several of our sewing fashionistas. Here’s the article that showed up in Sunday’s Trib! For all of you that live in Chicago and get to see the actual newspaper, it had lots of nice pics of everyone making their panties, t-shirt creations and more. It was super cool to see everyone having such a good time, and for the Trib to capture some of that for the world to see (we want to show everyone that sewing can be rewarding AND a lot of fun!). Keep watch as we plan more DIYStyle Parties…and if you have suggestions for where we should go, let us know. And in the meantime, hold your own “Panty Party” with your girlfriends, food, a bottle of wine, and dish. Fun is what this is all about :)

 Happy Sewing,


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