Friday, April 11, 2014

Psssst...About the "girls" and the "jiggly bits"

I was inspired to repost this entry (originally posted two years ago) because of a very timely article I read online today.  Ever fascinated by the entrepreneurial spirit of ambitious young people, a skilled dressmaker's contribution, a great business idea, and a market and investors who respond and support the idea, I felt moved and reminded to "support" us all...

We all need support sometimes. Well, except for a lucky few... But as you create, sew,or simply style yourself or others, you find that you have to work your way around "the girls" and all the other bits that don't want to stay where you'd like them to be. You do know who I mean, don't you? Whether you are a member of the "committee", are very ample, pendulous, voluptuous or asymmetrical, you have to work with fitting them every time you get dressed, design and/or sew. Below, are body-shaping swimsuits I've made for a client with a HH cup.
Padded strap elastic from SIL Thread, underwires from Steinlauf and Stoller (doubled in the channel for extra strength), powernet used as lining for a supportive body structure from Spandex House - made my client look like a Bond girl! But every body has different needs...
If the garment is already made, and you are simply getting dressed, every form of "help" you could ask for is available at Manhattan Wardobe Supply. Used by stylists and wardrobe professionals all over New York City, this place knows what you need, and has it in stock. Website or brick and mortar! Wanna make lingerie? There are lingerie and swim bra cups (same cups) sold at Steinlauf and Stoller, by the pair, for well under $10. Need hip pads or underwires? Boning? Stays? They've got that, too. In a wide variety of sizes, and all extremely affordable. And SIL Thread even carries a "separator"! But hey, if you've got a real challenge when it comes to fit, or if you just want that killer hourglass look, you can get a bra or shapewear you can swim in, a bra you can dance in, something that fits you... without having to make it, or have it made. A true specialty store within walking distance of the garment district... This is the "Pssst...." part. Bra Tenders Shhhh.... they're not on street level, and you wouldn't find them, or even know they EXIST otherwise. They really serve the theatrical community mainly, but they are also a retail establishment. Sizes AA to L. No kidding - I said "L". Make an appointment for a fitting. Be prepared to be eyed suspiciously by the guard in the lobby (or maybe that was just my imagination?), and being asked why you are there, and what the heck you want... They clearly don't want just anybody stopping in, which I did... today. "We're not set up for browsing", I was told. "We're really more of a showroom." Doesn't look that way, once inside, as it looks quite "browseable", but they make it quite clear that they don't want you to just "look around" or "explore", so know there are some gatekeepers involved here. They will not let you just buy without having a fitting first. Seriously. They specialize in undergarments and shapewear, and appointments carry no fee or obligation to buy, although you do have to secure your appointment with a credit card. In true New York fashion, they won't let you waste their time.

Now you know. Bratenders 630 9th Avenue Suite 601 NYC 10036 Tel: 212-957-7000

Monday, April 7, 2014

Mood gives you pointers...

I just happened upon this video, which is a great introduction to shopping at Mood for those who have never been.  Check it out!

Friday, April 4, 2014

Elegance in an Age of Crisis: Fashions of the 1930's

This is a current exhibit at the Museum at FIT.  Click through the link for hours.  Also note, this exhibit ends soon (April 19)!

When it comes to this exhibits, words fail me for this one.  I cannot adequately express how wonderfully, visually stimulating this exhibit is.  Just go.  It is amazing.  It is free.  It is timely, relevant, and smart.  If that isn't incentive enough, here is my stream of consciousness review...

Fred Astaire's custom shoes, the lovely draped geometry of Vionnet, lovely suits, a sweet and lovely hand knitted sweater... beauty at every turn.  They even took the time to show a woman's garment that is beautifully menswear inspired, despite its technical flaws.  I am so impressed that its value in this exhibit could be appreciated anyway!

Trust me on this one. It is powerful food for thought, particularly in the current US economy, with some historical perspective.