One of the things I love about IWCE Expo is that it is full of creative energy. The exhibition floor is abuzz with exchanges of ideas between suppliers, workroom experts and designers. That’s the added bonus to coming to this trade show, it’s not just about sourcing, it’s about learning, growing and sharing our knowledge with one another, in person and for future reference.
In my Trim Queen world, my favorite people to follow on social media and engage with are the makers. Seeing my trimmings in their hands, how they use materials, especially in ways I did not foresee, informs my design work and inspires me to evolve. I spoke to LuAnn Nigara about this on her podcast, A Well Designed Business I am a huge fan of LuAnn’s creative yet no-nonsense business approach, and was psyched to finally met her in person at the IWCE show last year. This year she is presenting again, as always, a get results seminar: Closing High End Window Fashion Sales. Don’t miss it!
My seminar Translating Fashion Trends to Original Designs with Staying Power is on Tues 9am, and what will you takeaway? Innovative fabrications that will increase your expertise as a designer or workroom. Which fashion elements will and won’t translate to decor and why. Leave inspired to incorporate the best of haute couture that has staying power and will elevate your business. Here’s a #sneakpeek as to what you can expect in this months WF Vision Magazine.
I hope you will join me after a highly entertaining, and inspiring, keynote by John and Jason of Madcap Cottage, talk about starting the day energized! Woohoo! Click to see all the valuable seminars and what you can expect on the exhibit floor, including the first ever International Textile Alliance Pavilion to get your fabric fix.
This expo, it’s also my pleasure to hit the Construction Zone with some of my materials and get hands-on with anyone ready to play. We’ll gather Tues at 11am and Wed at 2pm to make DIY Bespoke Embellishments. This workshop was born out of the idea that if you cannot find something in the marketplace, you make it yourself. No experience required, join me!
Let’s make passementerie
This French word translates “to turn by hand”. In 16th Century France, the artist Guild of Passementiers was created, that elevated turning braids into embellishments like frogs and tassels into an artform. It took seven years for an apprentice to become a master and his thesis, a subsequent calling card, was an ornate tassel showcasing his skill. The French aristocracy kept these artisans busy covering nearly every square inch of their noble residences embellishing their fine fabrics and furnishings. We’ll start with some basic techniques that will translate to any materials you use in your work.
It’s Tassel Time
There are some fancy tools you can buy to make tassels, but I use a piece of cardboard to wind the yarn into warp for the skirt. Tassels are all about the yarn, the color and the drape-ability. You can use solid yarns, mix yarns or use a metallic ombre one like I have here (I am crazy for a touch of metallic that catches the light in a room.) Trimmings are rightfully known as the jewelry of decor, the embellishment that pulls all elements together. We’ll have a blast making these although they won’t exactly get us our next royal commission. But you have to start somewhere!
Get Pompom Fever
If your work is more Boho or perhaps you are embellishing kids’ furnishings, pompoms may be your vibe. Note my fancy tool, LOL, it’s a wooden fork! Again, I will bring my fancier tools to share but this household item does the trick perfectly. I used a vintage yarn I had in my stash, wool and acrylic yarns will puff up nicely and you may BYOY (bring your own yarn) if you like. Beware, pompom-making is addictive, and you may get pompom fever in the Construction Zone at this workshop.
In between presenting my seminar Translating Fashion Trends to Original Designs with Staying Power and DIY Bespoke Embellishments workshops, I’ll be attending keynotes and seminars myself, shopping the exhibitors, reporting on social media and making new Fringe Friends. Please come and introduce yourself. I’ll be snapping photos for an Expo Recap and will be on the lookout for embellished IWCE stylemakers. I’m really looking forward to an inspiring show. So, until Tampa…keep #trimspotting!