IADT Detroit Imagine Fashion Show 2012

WE WON! WE WON WE WON WE WON. WE WOOONN *dances*

In case you haven’t gathered, my bff Alyza and I won BEST IN SHOW! last night at the IADT Detroit Imagine Fashion Show 2012! I’m still riding on that high and it’s beginning to feel a little surreal. Like, did last night really happen? And then I see that paper saying we were best in show and I’m reminded that it really is real.

They had us talk a little bit after they called our names in which I feel like we didn’t thank anyone except William Malcolm for liking our collection that much. SO, as a makeup for our dumbstruck rudeness, I’d like to formally thank first Alyza for being an amazing friend and genius pattern-maker and for balancing me out so well. I don’t think I could’ve pulled this off as good as it was without you. Secondly, thank you to all of you who supported us and believed in us – cliche, but true! And lastly, obviously thank you very much to the judges who chose our work as best in show this year. What an honor it is!

That said, on to the backstage highlights. We arrived in DTRO early to “pregame” as they say. Had lunch and a pina colada with Alyza, Tina, and Ross and then we arrived at the theatre half an hour early as everyone else started trickling in. It was rather hot and humid in the theatre, but the hottest part of the building was backstage where it was just as hectic and crazy as fashion shows you see on TV are.

I think we were supposed to have a run-through of the show before the real show, but that never happened. I’m thinking perhaps they told us we had to be there at 4 for that just so that they knew that everyone was there on time. They weren’t. One of our models showed up half an hour before the show and she didn’t get to model because she was so late.

I got my hair fixed, meanwhile, by the Paul Mitchell hair team and after the show got two of the girls’ contact information. They were very eager to work with me in the future if I ever needed their help. I’m pretty sure that was my first networking…thing. It was quite exciting.

Hair = fixed.

So, us designers played the waiting game downstairs in the dressing rooms while the show started, watching some program on the CW and wishing that that TV was live-streaming what the show looked like to the audience. I broadcasted that I found a Corona in the fridge, and two my fellow designers cracked that baby open and had a toast. It was wonderful.

And then we waited some more, as each of us was called in about groups of 3 to go backstage and get our models last minute prepped to walk on stage. Alyza, myself and everyone who was after us inched our way closer to the stage door so that we had more time to work with our models backstage, and I think that definitely worked in our favor. It was pretty sweet walking on stage after my models and getting so much applause from the audience.

Pre-show. Alyza looks like Velma from Scooby-Doo.

The second time around, when I went with Alyza, we walked to the end of the runway platform and did a little dance and then we sort of skipped away really quickly. After that, we weren’t really sure what to do, so we gathered all our garments and bags and headed back downstairs where somehow I was even hotter and sweatier than before. And then we all headed upstairs for the end of the show where we were announced best in show.

And then I went home. Hahahaha. I probably should’ve stayed for the afterglow, but I don’t think either Alyza or Tina did, so I don’t feel so bad. And that’s my version of the fun adventures of Imagine Fashion Show 2012! I’m thinking I might do this again next year.

Judgement: Shopping and Jury Show Results.

I spent the first chunk of today shopping at Somerset because that’s what I do when I’m bored and need to get out of the house: I shop. I visited the South side (or as I like to call it, the snobby rich side, the snooty side, the judgmental side, etc) and took note of the definite difference in customer service and clientele between the North and South sides.

I usually stick to the North side, which in comparison to the South side is probably considered the “commoners” side if we were in the UK. Expensive commoners side, but commoners side nonetheless. I hadn’t been to the South side in over a year and I wanted to see what’s new over there, as well as just refresh my memory of what’s there at all. I was happily surprised to find Sur La Table had opened shop on the second floor and I ended up getting a bottle of tea, basically.

Yes, this is an Instagram photo.

I stopped by Arhaus Furniture and Crate & Barrel (which I completely forgot we even had in Michigan. Surprise!) and was greeted with false interest at Arhaus and not greeted at all at Crate & Barrel, despite my excellent attire featuring a Ralph Lauren collared shirt. I also stopped by Ralph Lauren, where I was greeted judgmentally and not asked anything further past the initial hello. I understand working in retail, and especially a high end boutique like Ralph Lauren, means knowing who your regular customers are versus your drop-ins, but just because you haven’t seen me before doesn’t mean that I don’t have the $$$ or the will to open up my wallet for you and make it rain. Just sayin’. 

That said, once I came back to the North side, I felt much more comfortable being in the herd of people walking this way and that. One always feels judged at Somerset, in my opinion, but significantly less on the North side. I ended my shopping trip with GAP, where I found $7 leather flip flops and a $16 double-sided (reversible!) heavy skirt, seen below.

2 tank tops for $8 and a $4.80 v-neck tee from Forever 21

Lastly, today we got our jury show results, which are really just the papers the judges filled out with scores for our collections. My solo collection got some pretty average scores, with lots of 7’s and 8’s from what I remember, and one or two judges thought it was not a cohesive collection which absolutely blows my mind because…it’s a fucking cohesive collection and I’m not just saying that from my point of view. However, one of the judges did write “favorite” at the top of their sheet!

For my collaborative with Alyza, we scored a lot of 9’s and 10’s and two judges wrote “favorite” at the top of their sheets. There was this one judge, and I think it was the old lady, who scored incredibly low for both collections, with 4’s and 5’s and nothing higher. I asked my friend Tina if she also got low scores from her and she said yes (2’s 3’s and 4’s O_O).

On the one hand, I was a little distraught and disappointed with the scores I got. I feel like some of them are inadequate (especially for my solo collection; I just can’t get over the fact that one or two of them thought it wasn’t cohesive…wtf) which is almost unfair to say because they’re judging from a completely fresh perspective. They didn’t get to see the trials and tribulations that went into making the garments, but that’s what judging is about, isn’t it? Seeing things as they are, no backstories, no explanations.

On the other hand, this has definitely been a good experience in terms of the real world. I’ve always known that the fashion industry is not an easy thing to be in. It is not as glamorous and star-studded as we all like to think it is. It’s harsh, it’s cruel, it’s unwavering and it does not care about your feelings. After reading my feedback, I sat in my desk chair in anger, sadness, and resentment and thought that I need to harden my backbone. I also asked myself why I entered this field in the first place. I’m talented in many things – photography, for example. I could do that for a living, I thought. Then I remembered that judgment comes from all angles, in all fields. It’s really irrelevant what artistic endeavor I make my career (multiple, maybe?) for there will always be someone out there with a stick up their ass and their nose in the air who does not like what I do and has no qualms about voicing their opinions.

That said, tomorrow is another day. Cheers.

DTRO & Stinky Cheese

It’s the end of another day of break (time is a’flyin’) and I can happily say I have accomplished my first mission for these 2 weeks off: cleaning my room. I organized my bookshelves and desk (a little bit) as well as dusted nearly everything. The top of my big bookcase was pretty disgusting in terms of dust, actually. I used one Swiffer cloth for that part entirely. Both sides. 

I also went to DTRO with my mom to see where the Royal Oak Music Theatre is actually located and find one of the public parking structures for the fashion show next week. We successfully found both, and then walked around the shops down there.

I wasn’t expecting to find anything I’d want to buy, but we went into this vintage store called Lost and Found Vintage, and like any time that I go vintage/thrift shopping, I end up making fun of the clothing and asking myself and whoever I’m with “WHO BUYS AND ACTUALLY WEARS THIS SHIT????” Turns out, I do.

I found this AWESOME floor-length gauzey dress circa 1970s and it fits me perfectly. It’s got elastic cinching sleeves, a perfect scoop neckline, a zipper that I never need touch because of it’s elastic smocked waistband, and a cute poppy flower design all over that mildly dates it if you’re picky, but it totally fits into today’s floral trend. It’s very breezy and comfortable and I will have to take a picture soon. I also plan on going in that shop sometime again. They had some pretty awesome stuff.

We stopped in Paris beforehand because I always stop at Paris when I’m in DTRO, and I forgot to mention this yesterday, but I’m addicted to Instragram. These sound unrelated, but I found this fancy heavily beaded top while I was there and I thought “THIS WILL MAKE AN EXCELLENT INSTRAGRAM PHOTO” as I do nearly every time I eat. This fancy new phone with all this space on it is really turning me into a social media monster. If you have Instagram too, follow me! Username lovelikeangels.

We also went to Whole Foods to see if they had any dried lavender (they did not, sadface) and I ended up buying this DIVINELY DELICIOUS sheep’s milk cheese. When I smelled it in store I thought “yes, this is the perfect amount of stinky” and I knew it would taste amazing. And it does. I wish I could go on a year-long cheese vacation where I get to go to like, cheese caves and eat cheese all day. I’d probably die within a year, or have life-threatening triglycerides, but that’s beside the point.

Jury Show!

Tonight was the jury show prior to the fashion show in two weeks. It was hectic, hot as balls, and nerve-racking.
There were I think 5 or 6 judges, but I have no idea who any of them were except for William Malcolm and Joe Faris, who I fixated on both times I was up there.
We had to talk about our collection, discuss inspiration, construction, and fabric. For some reason I was super nervous like I used to be before I took speech class during my solo presentation, but was much calmer with Alyza.
During the group presentation, I thought I was gonna pass out a little cause Joe Faris stood up and took a closer look at the roses on our gray dress, but I thought he was looking at the lame construction of the top half of that dress. I was so relieved when he said he was looking to see how I’d made those roses. Apparently he hasn’t seen anything like them before?
They seemed highly impressed by my carnation dress; I made Megan walk last (and she thankfully lingered on her walk) so they could be mesmerized by the awesomeness of it.
I got a lot of compliments from fellow designers on both of my collections, which made me feel great, especially since my solo collection was wrinkled. It hurt my heart, and I couldn’t find a steamer.
Anyway, back to watching Mad Men!

Double-Dipping, Bitches!

I am so excited right now! I just came home from model casting for this year’s fashion show about half an hour ago and let me first say that the models I chose for mine and Alyza’s flower collection are so cute. Especially the first one, Megan. She’s got one of those adorable “button” faces as I like to call them. Round, buttony nose, adorable smile and bubbly personality to match. The third one, Jessa, is also similar, although she didn’t seem as bubbly. And the second one, Jane, is COLOSSALLY TALL. 5’11” without heels and she had on like 5 inchers today. I felt like a very tiny person next to her and I’m 5’7″.

Secondly, I picked plus size models for my “just in case” they need extra designers to show collection and they’re all extremely and WONDERFULLY curvacious. But the best part is that as I was leaving, I was discussing the whole “just in case” situation again with the teachers in charge of the show and was given the thumbs up to submit my plus collection for sure!! Now all that’s left is to make it past the jury show! (And make the whole PodBot collection, but we won’t talk about that yet.)

Speaking of plus sizes, today my mom and I went shopping at Great Lakes Crossing cause it’s been a while since we were last there. One of the last places we stopped was H&M which I always forget is there and am perpetually excited to find. Anyway, I discovered they carried the H&M plus size collection and was extremely disappointed in their line. One all-over glance gave me the impression of depression and closer inspection made me realize all the items were matronly.

I don’t understand what’s so hard about designing plus sizes that don’t make you look like a goddamn grandma. These companies need to hire me, clearly. H&M targets 20 and 30 somethings, yet they fall short in their plus sizes. No 20 or 30 something wants to look like they’re in retirement. They need to take a hint from Forever21 and refine it. Fortunately for me, I can fit into their knit size larges, so I ended up buying two modern mod dresses with the nearly-skanky length I associate with Zooey Deschanel.

See what I mean?

Also, I just want to boast for a second about my best deal of the day: GAP Outlet. I bought a tshirt and dress in the clearance section (and underwear for my brother which he says he won’t wear, but that’s what he said about the pairs I got him last time too and he’s totally been wearing them…even if it took a couple months for that to happen) with an extra 40% off. The dress was originally $70. I got it for $6.59. SIX DOLLARS AND FIFTY-NINE CENTS PEOPLE. I was SO happy. It rustles when I walk. <3

On another note, we stopped at Lowe’s on the way back home from Great Lakes and I nearly bought a terranium. I’ve always been fascinated by terraniums, and it doesn’t help that they’re very much in style right now, but I resisted because it was $25 and I could make it for way less. However, I did buy the cutest little vintage-looking handheld mister. It looks like a weird perfume bottle and it will be perfect for misting my future terranium.

Time to buy some giantass mason jars.