Clare Bare: My main goal is to make people feel good about themselves. I make garments that accentuate the body, rather than cover it up, push it up, or transform it into something that it never could be. I don’t believe in clothing that is created to solve a problem- the flaw doesn’t exist until you design something for it. I feel that this is one reason why people are so unsatisfied with their bodies. You can buy a garment that will temporarily make you look “better” while you’re wearing it, but when you take it off you’re even more dissappointed than you were in the first place because you realize that it’s not the real you. My lingerie is constructed to frame your body, fit comfortably, and make you feel naturally beautiful as you should.
Jennifer Joy Creative: All my creations are inspired by nature and my little family. I love to work with natural fibers such as hemp, linen and cotton for my clothing and wool, alpaca, bamboo, tencel, and various others for my yarn.
Tamara Embrey has been making up-cycled, recycled, and refashioned clothing since she was a teenager, long before it was the latest and the coolest to do so. At sixteen, she would create her own interesting and unique items to wear, having been inspired by both a trip to Goodwill and the latest issue of Vogue.
Tamara was not interested in anything that could be found at the mall, and was happy to apply her sewing skills (courtesy of her mother and her aunt) to update and personalize her thrift store finds.
She loved making clothes so much, she even contemplated attending fashion school. The male-dominated industry and the emphasis on boundless consumerism did not appeal to her, however. Still, all throughout her schooling she never gave up making things, and never stopped making new, fantastic clothes out of old, forgotten ones.
Tamara’s creativity has never been just about making clothes – she is also a writer and a painter, but she never put down her sewing, even while pursuing advanced degrees in other subjects. Upon finishing her MFA in writing, a friend of hers encouraged her to sell her upcycled clothing at a local market in the small town where she attended graduate school.
With a ten dollar table fee, it was hard to say no…and The Devil Made Me Do It clothing was born!
She found she really enjoyed both the creative and business side of making and selling her clothes, and the thrill of seeing her creations on other stylish people never got old. By the time Tamara moved to the DC area in 2008 and planned to apply to the Torpedo Factory as a resident artist, The Devil Made Me Do It was well established and already enjoying success!
All of Tamara’s clothes are made from high quality, upcycled wool and cashmere sweaters. Her creative process begins by looking through her considerable stash of thrifted sweaters for inspiration. An unusual color or pattern might catch her eye, and call out to her to be made into a ruffle hem or a collar detail, and soon a garment is under construction in her head.
She uses her own sense of style, her “jagged-edge sensibilities,” and her considerable skill with a serger (gained from a little instruction plus years of experience) to piece together sweater remnants into new, fabulous clothes.
Each item in the Devil Made Me Do It collection is therefore one-of-a-kind. Although Tamara will sometimes repeat a certain style, the nature of her found-object materials means that no two garments will ever be exactly alike, even those that started life as parts of the same sweater!
You can find The Devil Made Me Do It clothing in Tamara’s Etsy shop, and in the Fiberworks Studio at the Torpedo Factory in Alexandria, VA, as well as at the occasional local arts and crafts market. Tamara is always looking for gorgeous sweaters to cut up, so if you have any that need a new life, let her know!
There is something about a bluebell wood with dappled sunlight streaming through the leaves that makes me believe in nature spirits. They’re there, I know they are. I just wish I could see them. I imagine them often though, wearing clothes made from their surroundings; woven grasses, leaf skirts, flower petal dresses and crowns made from dew drops. They are in fact, just the sort of clothes I’d like to wear myself. Fortunately, talented people are out there making them in actual human adult sizes!
The above outfit by Spiralina from her shop Fractal Wings is made from raw silk with beautiful embellishments and I just love the way the shapes emulate summer leaves. I’m a big fan of her work and actively encourage you all to take a look at her shop. In fact I will show another one of her items because I love them so much. Her philosophy is to offer unique and beautiful clothing that brings out the goddess in us and it is clear that nature inspires her.
Another great item of human-sized clothing is this fantastically cool skirt with a sort-of leaf tail. Yes, I did indeed say a leaf tail. Unusual yes, but I love it! By Nature Reworked.
Nuno felting is like a mysterious magical technique that I will never understand no matter how many you tube tutorials I may watch. This butterfly top by FeuerundWasser utilises this wonder brilliantly. The colours are beautiful too, especially the way the greens and yellows blend into each other.
My Black Dress: I discovered my passion in Fashion three years ago and just entered a fashion school without any knowledge of clothing construction or pattern-making. Now I can bring any design in my mind or on paper into reality. I purely love sewing, designing, draping–in fact, the whole process of making clothes. I work on every single piece with my soul, passion, heart, and love. I would not put anything on my store that I am not proud of. Each peice is truely well-made and one of a kind. Enjoy!!