Consider the Lilies – Spring 2011 Exhibition
Consider the Lilies
And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith?
Matthew 6:28-30 perfectly sums up my overall theme of nature and fashion design while also speaking of my spiritual influences. This exhibition is a visual representation of how I have interpreted this verse. I believe that each person is given a talent and must share that gift with the world in a positive way. When I first read this verse in high school, I felt the calling to create clothing as a means to share my God-given talent and my Christian faith with others. This verse especially speaks to the women in today’s society by advising us to be happy with the natural forms God has provided us with because he has made each person and thing in a beautiful way. Because of this, the dresses shown here range in size from size 12 to size 16, which is considered plus size in the fashion industry. I decided to work in this size range to prove that these real and natural sizes are beautiful and attractive—not at all negative as our society has convinced too many women to believe. Also, each dress is inspired by a natural object: air (Aria), jellyfish (Cassiopeia), birds (Egretta), flowers (Rose), and the night sky (Twilight).
I enjoy working in a more organic fashion by letting the fabric or form speak to me and tell me how the dress should be designed. My sketches are an original idea that I start off with, but I prefer to set them aside after the initial pattern making and/or draping process. This practice allows me to play with the fabric and experiment with different techniques without being confined to the original design. By doing so, the final product is usually more appealing than the original idea.
First and foremost, I am greatly influenced by natural forms, which has become an increasingly present theme in all of my art. My design influences include the ruffled and layered textures created by Alexander McQueen and Marchesa. The clothing designs of the 1940s and 1950s with designers like Nina Ricci, Lanvin and costume designer, Edith Head have always inspired and driven my work.