Monday, May 28, 2012

Caped Crusader, part 2.

It's that time of year again, where its suddenly so cold that just taking your socks off seems like a bad idea.
Its that time of year again, when the leaves pile up in the street, and I just want a socially-acceptable blanket to wear outside.
But wait! We have just such a thing! 

I cannot overstate how awesome capes are, if you are not already a convert, get into them.
I am making a very limited-edition series of short capes that are freaking cosy, and damned versatile.
They are available made to order for only $299.00, and you can even bring in your own choice of wool to be made up: 2m please.

At the moment, these beauties are available ready-made in black jacquard wool, or, a very special one-off vintage brown wool with pale pink spots, and shot pink silk lining. And there is literally only one of those. Patterns to come will include a sweet green and pink tweed, Chanel- style; and a Little Red RidingHood cape. Made, as they are, with a pure wool outer, and a silk lining, these capes are cosy and beautiful to wear.

Black wool melton cape with convertible collar and full lining.
Made to order for Ascot Races. Collar shown tied.
Collar worn open

Jacquard wool cape, available to purchase, collar shown wrapped and pinned with brooch.
The collars can be worn (at least) three ways, and, well, I just think they're swell. I designed this style for a client last year, to wear to a winter wedding, but these little rippers can go over everything from jeans to a formal dress, to race wear or worn as a wedding shrug. Brrr, winter wedding. Get a white one.

Vintage brown and pink wool cape, with shot Thai silk lining and under-collar, shown here tied. One only available. 

Monday, May 7, 2012

Get your Hollywood on..

In preparation for the Met Ball, happening tomorrow, I am sharing this Hollywood- inspired gown today.

This gown was for a lovely lady called Lyn. She was to be the bridesmaid at her sister's wedding, and the theme was Hollywood Glamour.

Lyn's sister's brief was "not Black, please", because Lyn is a good Melbournian, and enjoys the delights of all colours from black, through charcoal, navy, serge, dove and slate grey. And yellow.

So my challenge was to create something wedding-appropriate, and yet still connect with Lyn's tasteful, restrained aesthetic, and her penchant for neutrals.

She gave me a series of amazing "inspiration" photos, including, you know, some Eli Saab, that kind of of gown. Nothing too spesh. Or difficult.

Elie Saab Spring/Summer 11 Haute Couture
Elie Saab Spring/Summer 11 Haute Couture

Lyn loved the classic line and bell-shaped skirt, so I went in search of interesting fabrics and colours that would make the bride and Lyn happy..

I found this ace printed nylon net in the Fabric Store (Brunswick Street),
which really inspired me and eventually also inspired Lyn, once we had a whole design worked out. 

Design for Lyn, © Ellen Christian, all rights reserved. 
The top is made from silk crepe de chine, lovely, and very flimsy. 
I really liked being able to achieve a layered, exciting, textured skirt, that is not too conservativly "glamourous", and has a quirkiness that suits Lyn. 

We also added a yellow velvet belt in the end, to sass it up a bit.

The hip portion of the skirt was made in panels of bias-cut crepe de chine, layered with the net over the top, and draped down the centre front.

Skirt layered in triangular 'kerchiefs.

Silk crepe de chine gown with layered net skirt and velvet belt.
And here are a couple of pics from the wedding day - thanks Lyn!