Sunday, October 11, 2009

My First Post!

Who am I to write a blog about style? Over my 28 years, I've sewn one (1) dress, one (1) pair of plaid shorts, and a pillow made to look like a giant mint chocolate chip ice cream cone. I don’t go to fashion week or take classes at FIT. I’m not an intern at Condé Nast or an apprentice in an atelier. I've never even worked as a greeter at the Gap.

So, why am I launching a blog (and putting myself at the mercy of the internet) despite all this? Because since I came up with this crazy idea, I've filled a moleskin notebook (if it worked for Hemingway...) with little sketches and discoveries like "Luella = girlie" and "Christopher Kane!!!!!!" And I've found myself sharing the contents of my notebook with friends and family. And I’m having fun being curious and green. When I can finally pronounce a designer’s name without getting tongue tied, I’m filled with a sense of pride.

A fashion blog is a strange pursuit for someone who works as a book jacket designer (a job I love). But I think what I'm coming to understand is that I love fashion because when I see a gorgeous shoe or put together an innovative outfit, it makes me feel the same way as when I'm designing a book jacket and everything miraculously falls into place. It's a feeling of discovery. It's a way to express yourself. It's a way to put yourself inside someone else's art.

I wanted to post the above photo because A) who doesn't like seeing cute childhood photos? and B) because it is not a photo from Halloween. This was just an ordinary day when I told my mom I wanted to put on a ballet of The Secret of NIMH. With construction paper ears and eyeliner whiskers, I tied a bathrobe belt tail around my waist, and danced around the living room. It only took a few moments and a little creativity, and the feeling I woke up with, of wanting to be a brave little mouse, came to life. I was Mrs Brisby all along. I just needed a way to bring it out.

The poet Wallace Stevens said, "Style is not something applied. It is something that permeates. It is of the nature of that in which it is found, whether the poem, the manner of a god, the bearing of a man. It is not a dress." I think this is what I want to explore, the idea that style is not about wearing every "it" piece that comes down the runway; it's about what makes you feel good and brings out YOU. And what makes you feel like you could be a retro patent leather clutch you got for $15 at the Salvation Army (me) or a gorgeous pair of Givenchy heels you bought to treat yourself (me again).

I'm searching for ways to capture the magic of a Bergdorf's window— without stealing an outfit off a mannequin or spending my entire paycheck. So, I hope whoever is reading (Hi, Mom!) will enjoy sharing in my self-education and walking in my heels.

- C


Chris Sergio said...

Yay! The beginning of an amazing journey. :-) Break a leg, lady!!! XOXO

Christine said...

You are an amazing book cover designer, an innovative and awesome dresser, and now I find you can write too?!! I shall bookmark your blog immediately!

.michelle. said...

OMG!!! Finally! I'm still waiting for your music blog! is that next on the agenda?? Good luck my little fashion guru! xoxo

Rich L. said...

I often dressed up as a rat of NIMH as well.

Catherine said...

Correction: My mom informed me that my ears were actually made of felt. : )

sarah said...

Excellent outlet Catherine, can't wait to go along this journey with you :) Enjoy!

James R. Perales said...

Very cool! Follow tyour passion and put it out here. I'm sure you have lots to show and tell. All the best! James

H3NR7 said...

Can't wait for your September issue.