Back from an amazing NYC trip with some great memories and A LOT of inspiration... Conversationals and geometric prints were big in knits... I fell in LOVE with these snuggly coats!! Bring on the cold weather!

LBD, Paris

Opera Atelier's Don Giovanni

Opera Atelier's Don Giovanni (Photo by Bruce Zinger)
Opera can be such a serious affair but in the case of Opera Atelier's presentation of Don Giovanni, the goal was laughter. Director Marshall Pynkoski introduced the opening night production by equating Mozart's character of Don Giovanni to Warren Beatty which in and of itself caused much mirth. He also said  that the two ways to create a comedic opera were 1. speed and 2. youth. By filling his cast with attractive and trim young singers, dancers and actors, and by keeping a lively pace, he achieved both goals and the audience responded with laughter throughout the show and with a standing ovation at the end.

Opera Atelier's Don Giovanni (Photo by Bruce Zinger)
Award-winning designer Martha Mann created costumes that achieved that difficult balance between period dress and modernity. Although the colours were subdued, and sometimes bordered on somber, the effect was harmonious. Subtle details like sequins and lace allowed the lighting effects to dance over the costumes, adding another dimension of sparkle. Of particular note were the glorious men's outfits, particularly the brocade vests and the velveteen breeches worn with fabulous thigh-high (Puss in boots style) boots. Another highlight were the swirling cloaks with colourful satin lining on the cuffs and hoods for the masquerade. With such a simple garment, the mastery of cut was evident in the movement and dimension created by these glorious cloaks.

Set designer Gerard Gauci did his usual magic with immense trompe l'oiel panels. His sense of humour was evident in the painted corner of the drop that curls to reveal the back of the canvas and the sheets of music that appear to float to the floor. Small details like a painted bush lifted up to reveal Act II added to the fun.

Although the opera is sung in Italian, I didn't need to look at the translation. The actors movements, gestures and changes in their voice conveyed the story beautifully. In fact, I think I've seen this opera several times before, but I don't ever remember enjoying it so much.

Opera Atelier's Don Giovanni is playing at the Elgin Theatre this week only:
October 30, November 1, 2, 4, and 5, 2011. The production will also be travelling to Ohio later this month. For tickets and more information, visit the Opera Atelier website. And by the way, Opera Atelier will be performing in Versailles in May 2012!

Photos provided courtesy of Opera Atelier and are subject to copyright.

Preen A/W 2011 NY

Preen, A/W 2011, New York, Josephine Skeiver and Julia Saner.

Creative Process Journal: Marie Antoinette and Chick Lit

Marie Antoinette and her ladies in waiting from the movie Marie Antoinette by Sofia Coppola
One of the best thing about being a grad student is having access to online academic journals..... And given how much I like to read, it is almost like getting my daily dose of candy. One article that helped me gain a better understanding of the most recent wave of interest in Marie Antoinette is called "Marie Antoinette: Fashion, Third-Wave Feminism, and Chick Culture" by Susanne Ferriss and Mallory Young which was published in Literature Film Quarterly in 2010.

In this article, the authors trace the popularity of Marie Antoinette as an icon of fashion to the rise of chick culture and third wave feminism. They identify Antonia's biography called Marie Antoinette The Journey (2001), Caroline Weber's book Queen of Fashion (2006) and Sofia Coppola's movie Marie Antoinette (2006) as being pivotal to the transformation of the woman who was once considered a "heartless, elitist, anti-revolutionary wicked witch" into a "sympathetic, unfairly maligned victim" (Ferriss and Young: 98). The authors present the argument that this  revisionist account of Marie Antoinette is representative of a "third-wave feminist aesthetic focused on youth, fashion, sexuality, celebrity and consumerism." (Ferriss and Young: 99).

Fashion figures heavily into their analysis of the books and film and the authors consider how a ceremonial change in dress symbolized a "re-fashioning of self". For example, there was a stripping of her Austrian identity as Marie Antoinette crossed the border from Austria into France with her nakedness becoming "a metaphor for her psychic vulnerability" (Ferriss and Young: 102). As well, the authors consider other aspects of fashion in the movie such as the use of pink as a "signature colour of postfeminism" and as the shoes by Manolo Blahnik as having a "strong chick-culture connection" (Ferris and Young: 104-105).

Marie Antoinette Movie - Converse Sneakers
There is a lot of meaty content in this article but of note here are two items:
1. The Converse shoes in the film's shopping scene were not a mistake (as some articles/websites would suggest). The authors posit that "Coppola consciously admits and laughs at her own use of contemporary fashion imagery." (105)
2. Marie Antoinette's love of fashion and her lavish consumption is considered to be "evidence of her playful, endearing, queen-next-door charm" and is pivotal to the understanding of the movie as a revisionist account and alignment with chick lit culture and third-wave feminism. (106)

This scholarly article was both entertaining and enlightening. I equate reading it to a light-bulb moment. I now understand why "the attitude toward the infamous queen might provide a clue to the Zeitgeist during any period in Europe and America since her own time," as Caroline Weber suggested in her book and is emphasized by Ferriss and Young  (99).

Bottom line - I think that I need to incorporate a pair of Converse high-tops into my Marie Antoinette dress installation.....

Works cited:
Article: Marie Antoinette: Fashion, Third-Wave Feminism, and Chick Culture
Authors: Suzanne Ferriss and Mallory Young
Source: Literature Film Quarterly, 2010. Vol. 38, Issue 2, p98-116

Queen of Fashion, What Marie Antoinette Wore to the Revolution
Author: Caroline Weber
Publisher: Henry Holt & Company, New York, 2006.

Project Clock: Article review and synthesis 3 hours
To date: 13 hours

Jardin des Tuileries, Paris

Allée de Castiglione, Paris

Meet me in Florence at the Costume Colloquium

Courtesy of the Costume Colloquium III
From Iowa to Florence... it's a big leap but hey it doesn't hurt to have big dreams.... Florence Italy will be the host city for the Costume Colloquium III: Past Dress-Future Fashion which will take place November 8-11, 2012. This international, interdisciplinary and intercultural symposium is intended to promote the exchange of knowledge related to costume and dress. 
If you have a paper, unpublished research, new creations and/or practical experience, relating to the theme, consider submitting an abstract before the deadline of October 31, 2011. The topics of interest include:
I.  The remaking or recreating dress from the past: yesterday and today
II.  Patterns from the past and the fashions of today: which aspects of a certain historic past?
III. The past relived through dress:
    . in institutional collections (public and private)
    . in a social context (pageantry, parades and historical reenactment)
    . in didactic experiences (fashion and design course and schools)
IV. The vintage phenomenon and recycling of styles
V.  Conservation, restoration and the presentation of collections: new tendencies and innovative methods
VI.  Fashion documents and archives
VII. Dress collecting: goals and accessibility
VIII. Information regarding costumes and dress accessories

Of course, being in Florence the symposium will take advantage of the rich cultural history of the region and will include exclusive behind-the-scene visits, tours, and visits to some of Florence’s historic monuments and sites, including the current installation of historic dress and contemporary fashion at the Costume Gallery of the Palazzo Pitti.

Costume Colloquium III: Past Dress – Future Fashion is the third in a series of bi-annual conferences dedicated to the discussion of fashion, fabric, styles, techniques, conservation and the may topics associated with dress history and contemporary costume creation, use and design. Costume Colloquium I (2008) was a tribute to renowned dress historian Janet Arnold, while Costume Colloquium II (2010) centered on themes related to Dress for Dance. The 2012 edition will focus on the broader analysis of influences of historical styles on current and future fashion trends.  

Shall we meet there?

For further information visit the website www.costume-textiles.com or send an email to info@costume-textiles.com

Creative Process Journal: The Nature of Obsession

Marie Antoinette Obsession (Digital Collage by Ingrid Mida 2011)

Obsession is defined in the Webster's dictionary as "the domination of one's thoughts or feelings by a persistent idea, image or desire." Under that definition, it is clear that I am obsessed -  with the dress that is believed to have been worn by Marie Antoinette and that is now part of the Royal Ontario Museum's collection. What it is about that particular dress that haunts me I cannot articulate clearly... It might be because that dress was the reason I discovered that the world of fashion had a scholarship beyond what I knew from fashion magazines. But it is clear that I am not alone in my obsession with this dress or Marie Antoinette.

It was not long after the doomed Queen of France lost her head that others became obsessed with her. In the middle of the 19th century, Empress Eugenie became obsessed with Marie Antoinette. In an article called The Empress's New Clothes, Fashion and Politics in Second Empire France, the author, Therese Dolan,  writes Eugenie "wished to connect her personal image with what she perceived to be the political astuteness and personal courage of the beheaded queen." Eugenie's imitation of Marie Antoinette influenced the revival of 18th century styled fashions including the exaggerated silhouette of enormous skirts and other accessories like the fichu and mantillas. (Dolan: 26-27)

In an article called Marie Antoinette Obsession published in the University of California Press by Terry Castle (Volume No. 39, Spring 1992, p 1-38), he refers to several case histories of women becoming obsessed with Marie Antoinette:

In the case of "Helene Smith", she claimed in a state of hypnotic trance to have had three previous lives, one of which included Marie Antoinette. At such times, she would "pantomime with a handkerchief or an imaginary fan, pretend to take snuff, mimic the action of throwing back a train, and address those present as though speaking to members of a court." (Castle: 2) Observers of her trance-like behaviours as Marie Antoinette believed that Smith's "embodiment as queen was often convincing, if not moving." (Castle: 2)

Castle also refers to an article from 1907,  in the British Journal of the Society for Psychical Research, in which an anonymous author described having seeing an apparition that she believed "to be the ghost of the French Queen" which had appeared to her repeatedly since childhood.  The writer of this article called "Dream Romances" admitted that she could not think of any "plausible explanations" for her visions. (Castle: 2-4)

In 1911, a book called "An Adventure" was published by Macmillan in which the authors "Miss Morison" and "Miss Lamont" described seeing an apparition of the queen and several members of her court in the gardens of Versailles near the Petit Trianon. It was later revealed that the authors of this book were in fact two academics, Charlotte Anne Moberly and Eleanor Jourdain, the principal and vice-principal of a college in Oxford. These two respectable women faced a great deal of ridicule after their identities were revealed and yet even in the "face of exquisite public ridicule" they maintained their beliefs and spent many years trying to validate their claims. (Castle 5-6)

The point of Castle's article is not to point out the oddity of this obsession but instead to ask the question "What was it about Marie Antoinette - and Marie Antoinette alone - that she should become so extraordinarily present, more than one hundred years after her death, to four presumably intelligent, well-educated and otherwise conventional women?" (Castle: 8)

And while I disagree with the balance of Castle's argument (which delves into Freudian analysis and homoerotic attachment), I think he poses an interesting question. Why have so many succumbed to an obsession with Marie Antoinette?

Works Cited:
Marie Antoinette Obsession
Author: Terry Castle
Source: Representations, No. 38 (Spring 1992) pg. 1-38
Published by: University of California Press

The Empress's New Clothes: Fashion and Politics in Second Empire France
Author: Therese Dolan
Source: Woman's Art Journal, Vol. 15, No. 1 (Spring - Summer, 1994) pp. 22-28
Published by: Woman's Art, Inc.

Project Clock: + 4 hours (research, article analysis, digital collage and blog write-up)
Total to date: 10 hours

Creative Process Journal: Marie Antoinette Slept Here

Marie Antoinette: Victim or Villain  (Digital Collage) by Ingrid Mida October 2011
This is the launch of my creative process journal for a new project called ..... Marie Antoinette Slept Here.

The concept is a riff on celebrity culture. As a society, we seem so entranced by celebrities - what they wear, where they go, what they do. The tabloid newspapers and media sites that are fueled by the activities of celebrities are proof of that. And I have to admit I'm guilty of that too - with my ongoing fascination with Marie Antoinette. As I mentioned in a post earlier this week, it was those initial posts I wrote about the dress at the Royal Ontario Museum which initially sparked the popularity of my blog. I continue to get hits and emails about Marie Antoinette to this day.

My idea is to  make a robe a la francasie that is inspired by the dress belonging to the ROM, but constructed in a post-modern way.  I will imagine the dress as it was before alteration to recreate the exaggerated silhouette of the time using a mash up of fabrics that I purchased in Paris several years ago. This choice of fabric will be a form of textual poaching in that the meaning will be renegotiated to reflect a critique of culture.

While I am making the dress, I will use process work to consider how to strengthen the metaphor and develop it into a conceptual art piece. I will alter the dress in some way - perhaps through embroidery, paint or in some other intervention - to make more than just a dress. It will be a statement about celebrity culture and our fascination with this woman. I will post regular updates as I create this dress for a December 5 deadline.

Project Clock: 5 hours for initial concept development + 1 hour digital collage = 6 hours

Carolina Herrera A/W 2011 NY

Carolina Herrera, A/W 2011, New York, Kirsi Pyrhonen and Magdalena Frackowiak.

Anna Wintour outside the Balmain show, Paris

Paris Fashion Week Spring Summer 2012

Jardin des Tuileries, Paris

It all started with Marie Antoinette

Marie Antoinette's Dress (Property of the Royal Ontario Museum)
Life is funny. If someone had told me that one day I'd be interviewing curators and that people in New York would be talking about a speech I'd given on the topic of Fashion and Art, I would have laughed at the improbability of it all. And yet, that is now my reality and it is all because of a dress.....

Back in 2008, I was new to blogging. All I knew at that point was that I wanted to write about fashion, art and books. It was a slow beginning. And then one day, I saw a dress at the Royal Ontario Museum that may have been worn by Marie Antoinette. It is probably the only such dress in existence and is believed to have survived because it was customary for royalty to give away their clothing after the season. The dress had been altered in the 19th century and was purchased by the ROM in 1925 by the ROM's first director, Charles Trick Currelly, from an antiques dealer in London, England.  I became obsessed with this dress and wanted to understand what it might have looked like before it was altered (actually I'm stilll obsessed with this dress and will soon begin to post about a creative project inspired by that dress).  I started reading everything I could about Marie Antoinette and 18th century dress and discovered a whole world of fashion scholarship that I had not even known existed. By immersing myself in the topic, I taught myself costume history. (The one thing I learned from my first master's degree was how to teach myself anything although I have since taken courses in costume history). And although fashion had been my muse in my art practice for several years before this juncture, I also began to make replicas of period dress in paper, in fabric and in mesh. I attended lectures and exhibitions about costumes and textiles. As I gained knowledge, I began to write about what I saw - at first for my blog, then for newsletters and then for journals and now for my masters of fashion thesis.

There was a time when I worked in finance that I had an unshakable confidence in what I was doing. They called me the Blonde Barracuda - probably because I was fearless in speaking my mind. But when I left that career to care for my sick little boy and tend to my dying father, my self confidence evaporated. It seemed that people no longer were interested in what I had to say because I was a stay at home mother.... And even after I forged a new career as a photographer and then as an artist, something still didn't fit. As much as I enjoyed the process of creation, I did not feel intellectually engaged or challenged as an artist and my days in the studio were too solitary. But what this immersion in art has done is helped me to understand the common visual vocabulary and processes shared by both art and fashion.

After attending the Costume Society of America mid-west conference last weekend, I feel like I have found my people... I speak the language of fashion academia and I'll be reshaping my speech into an article to submit for publication. Who knows maybe one day I'll actually be brave enough to actually talk to Hamish Bowles and Anna Wintour ....

P.S. I received permission from Valerie Steele and Harold Koda to publish the transcripts of our conversations on fashion and art on Fashion Projects.

Jardin des Tuileries, Paris

Carine Roitfeld, Paris

Elisa Nalin, Paris

Paris Fashion Week Spring Summer 2012

When Does Fashion Become Art?

Alexander McQueen Jungle 1997-1998

This is the abstract for my Keynote Address at the Costume Society of America Mid-West Conference presented on October 14, 2011 at 4 pm at the University of Northern Iowa:
When Does Fashion Become Art?  by Ingrid Mida
Clothing can be a visual mirror of our inner selves. We each get dressed in the morning and make choices how to present ourselves to the world. We construct our identity with our choice of clothing and accessories and signal our belonging or not. This expression of identity through dress makes it a ready subject for artistic practices and interpretation and both artists and designers have considered notions of the body and identity as articulated through fashion. 
There has been much debate about whether fashion is art. Fashion scholars such as Sung Bok Kim, Sandra Miller, Anne Hollander and Elizabeth Wilson have considered the question. In my interviews with four museum directors/scholars, including Matthew Teitelbaum of the Art Gallery of Ontario, Nathalie Bondil of the MMFA, Valerie Steele of FIT and Harold Koda of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, there was no consensus. This was not surprising given that fashion designers themselves do not agree on whether fashion is art.
It was an instinct – as a result of my work as an artist - that led me to frame the question in a different way. Instead of asking “Is fashion art” it seemed to make more sense to ask “When does fashion become art?” After all, both fashion and art require the translation of an idea into another form. Both disciplines share a visual vocabulary and process-oriented development. Both fashion and art also have commercial aspects driving their conception and both can include multiples in a series or collection.

But, not all fashion is art. What falls into the realm of fashion is just too broad for that statement to be true, especially when fashion can include both garments of haute couture and trendy mass-produced items.

Changing the question to “When Does Fashion Become Art?” leaves open the possibility that some fashion might be considered art. This is especially true when contemporary art is defined by the expression of an idea or a concept. The object – whether painting, sculpture, video, installation or clothing – is important, but only in terms of the manifestation of the idea. In our post-modern world, the boundaries have blurred and the conception of what is art has changed.

Ideas expressed in terms of fashion are accessible to audiences in a way that contemporary art often is not. One does not have to be a fashion scholar or understand the complex and divergent theories of how fashion works to decipher the language of clothing. We do it unconsciously every day and to me, it is this quality that makes fashion as art such a powerful statement. 

Some curators have embraced the concept of fashion as art. Recent noteworthy exhibitions of this type have included The Concise Dictionary of Dress at the Blythe House, London in May 2010, Rodarte, States of Matter at Museum of Contemporary Art Los Angeles in March 2011, McQueen: Savage Beauty at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York in May 2011 and The Fashion World of Jean Paul Gaultier at the Montreal Museum of Fine Art in June 2011. 

Within each of these exhibitions, fashion was presented as a means of conveying a specific conceptual premise. This premise was not just a source of inspiration, but was a message or statement about society, identity or the body. And it is this aspect of fashion – when the form of expression is based on a thematic premise -- that defines for me the point at which fashion becomes art.

To read the transcripts of my interviews with Nathalie Bondil and Matthew Teitelbaum, please visit Fashion Projects (www.fashionprojects.org). I have requested the permission of Harold Koda and Valerie Steele to post the transcripts of our conversations there as well. This will be my last post about the conference as it is time to move on to other things...

Thakoon A/W 2011 NY

Thakoon, A/W 2011, New York, Zuzanna Bijoch and Codie Young.

Report from the Costume Society of America Mid-west Conference in Iowa

It was a whirlwind weekend in Iowa and I'm happy to report that my speech went well. Although I've given talks and presentations before, I felt a different level of expectation as the keynote speaker and I  was nervous. Luckily the hours before were so busy that I hardly had time to think about it. My presentation on When does Fashion Become Art? went very well. There was a lively discussion about the issues I raised in my speech and I had many people come up to me afterwards to say how much they enjoyed my talk. I also had several profs suggest that I have my paper published. And one of the CSA organizers thought that it would be a topical choice of theme for a conference. Unfortunately, the talk was not taped and nor did anyone take photos....

But it was a wonderful experience for me for many reasons. I made some new contacts and hopefully some new friends, I learned about some new directions in research, and I also had a good time. The organizers of the event - Annette Lynch, Carol Colburn, Amy Rohrburg, Darrell Taylor, and Linda Grimm of the University of Northern Iowa - thought of everything. We were enlightened with 8 research papers and 3 invited speakers, entertained with dance and theatre performances, catered to with far too much good food and made to feel welcome in their community. It made me wish that I didn't live quite so far away.

Although all the presentations were first rate, some of the research talks that I particularly enjoyed included:

Dressing for Love, War and Suicide by Linda Pisano of Indiana University. This asssociate professor of Costume Design talked about her experiences in delivering three interpretations of costumes for the play Romeo and Juliet to give it a contemporary edge. These three modern interpretations were radically different from traditional period dress giving a new edge and life to the play.

In their talk about A Woman of Considerable Influence, Ann Braeten and Jacqueline Wayne Guite of the North Dakota State University talked about the suffragist movement in North Dakota. The movement was led by Kate Selby Wilder and her clothing was examined in context to her work for that movement. What was particularly interesting about this talk was their examination of cartoons from the period as a way of understanding how people viewed the suffragist movement at the time.

Barbara Trout of the University of Nebraska gave a talk on Transparency: Space, Dress and the Female Form. Transparent fabrics reveal and transmit light but they also elevate, seduce, and elude. Barbara reviewed the history of transparent fabrics which goes back as far as the early 17th century. She also discussed the use of transparency by designers like Vionnet, Yves Saint Laurent, Versace and others. I found her reflections on transparency as an aesthetic tool particularly relevant to my work with mesh as it has an element of transparency making the articulation of seaming an important consideration during construction.

Petra Slinkard from the Indianapolis Museum of Art talked about a Seattle based performance troupe called Friends of the Rag. This group which formed in 1972 combined elements of wearable art with performance. Their name was a pun on the trend towards groups naming themselves "Friends of" - "everyone was friends of something - friends of the earth, friends of the whale". Their surrealist like costumes were on display in the UNI Gallery and were not only funny but thought provoking.

I am on my way home today. As much as I enjoyed my time here, truly there is no place like home!

Denim again, Paris


"On October 1st, Pattern People participated in Content at the Ace Hotel in Portland, where designers were each given a room to make their own for a day. Pattern People's idea was to cover the room in patterns; wallpaper, bedding, pillows, etc. But, instead of working at full-scale, they re-created the room in miniature complete with tiny furniture, plants, working lights and of course, surface designs wherever they could go. To finish it off, the diorama featured a peep-hole view through a fish eye lens which added to the miniature magic. It was then placed behind curtains which hid the actual room interior from sight. Peering into the looking glass, viewers expectations and perceptions were challenged. Many assumed they were looking into the actual room, some were confused by what they saw, while others were delighted at the perceptual shift they were forced to make. A few of the observers asked, “Why won’t they let us in? I want to be in there!” Pattern People's miniature adaptation of the room offered viewers a visually stimulating experience which left them in all states of wonder." more here

Pattern People is a Portland, Oregon based surface design studio founded by Claudia Brown and Jessie Whipple Vickery who came together with a shared love of pattern and adornment. Bringing a modern touch to the rich history of surface design, the studio creates prints and illustrations for fashion, beauty and interiors clients. Projects range from hand painted murals to beauty packaging for companies such as Estée Lauder, Stussy and Nike. Their work has been featured in publications including Simply Pattern by Viction:ary, Monocle Magazine, and Print & Pattern by Laurence King.

For more information about Pattern People, please visit:

More denim, Paris


Yves Saint Laurent - Classicism and Transgression - A Talk by Laurent Cotta at the Bata Shoe Museum

Yves Saint Laurent Pant Suits
Laurent Cotta, the fashion historian, curator and genius behind this summer's Madame Gres exhibition in Paris and the 18th Century in Contemporary Fashion at the Grand Trianon in Versailles (among his many other accomplishments) spoke last night at the Bata Shoe Museum about Yves Saint Laurent.

Monsieur Cotta explained how Yves Saint Laurent combined elements of classicism and transgression in his designs for women, reviewing Yves Saint Laurent's career from his early days at Dior through the 1960s and 1970s. This period was a pivotal time in the history of contemporary fashion for women and Saint Laurent led the way. Yves Saint Laurent believed in comfort, ease and elegance for women and was innovative in his designs  - often achieving a heightened degree of femininity through the seemingly paradoxical use of masculine attire like "le smoking" and the pant suit.

I took copious notes as my thesis will be about the radical changes in fashion for women in the 1960s. I also asked Monsieur Cotta what he was working on for next year. Although the Gallera Musee de la Mode et du Costume  is closed for renovations until 2013, he said he was working on an exhibition about the History of Haute Couture and also an exhibition on the private archives of Balenciaga. These exhibitions will be shown at other venues in Paris next summer and I will look forward to seeing them.

But first to Iowa where I will close my speech with a quote from Pierre Berge about fashion and art.
"I don't know if fashion is art, but it needs an artist to make it."

Diane Von Furstenberg A/W 2011 NY

Diane Von Furstenberg, A/W 2011, New York, Ranya Mordanova and Suzie Bird.

Derek Lam A/W 2011 NY

Derek Lam, A/W 2011, New York, Alana Zimmer and Mirte Maas.

Denim, Paris


What beautiful autumn weather we're having in Berlin! 
There's inspiration anywhere you look.. Must get these colours down in a print, quick!!! found here

Valentin Yudashkin, Paris

Paris Fashion Week Spring Summer 2012

The Keynote

Fiona dress by Judith & Charles
I have had so many ideas for posts but no time to write them.... Between caring for my family and cooking Thanksgiving dinner for my extended family, doing course work, reading, research, studying for a test, yoga, practicing and re-writing my keynote address for the Costume Society of America conference later this week, there hasn't been much time for anything else....

Of course, there was one thing I absolutely had to make time for and that was picking out a dress to wear for the keynote. I wanted something to signify confidence.... and this red dress was it! Made by the Canadian label Judith & Charles, it makes me look like I know what I'm talking about. And after nearly 6 months of thinking about my keynote, 5 drafts of my speech, 4 interviews with curators Nathalie Bondil, Matthew Teitelbaum, Valerie Steele, and Harold Koda, 3 long practice sessions with my slides, 2 sleepless nights and 1 red dress,  I think I'm finally ready!!!  

Chiara, Paris

Paris Fashion Week Spring Summer 2012
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