I felt like Cinderella with Jenn Lamb as my fairy godmother when she transformed me into the ever so stunning gown that I am today. My confidence and poise capsules my wearer allowing my silhouette to grace the evening air.
I have to admit though, I wasn’t so peacefully minded in the beginning of the process. For people to understand, I suppose the only thing I can relate my anxiousness to is getting a hair cut except unlike hair, my fibers don’t grow back. I knew, however, that I was in good hands.
I watched Jenn Lamb meticulously create the patterns with her eyes as close to the pencil as she could get without losing sight of her direction. I observed how measurements were tested time and time again against the pattern paper, how seam allowances were matched against partnered patterns and every corner was labeled and even snipped to mark alignments. The amount of detail seemed endless but Lamb was in a peaceful state as the craft was her element.
The patterns were then cut out into calico and muslin to create a toile. This way if any adjustments needed to be made on the tailor’s dummy, they would be done on a cheaper fabric rather than on myself. I was very thankful for this stage. Once the toile alterations matched the paper patterns, it was my turn to conform into the art. Luckily, I was ready.
Jenn Lamb pinned the patterns to my “wrong” side. This doesn’t mean that my fabric is wrong, but just that it’s the back side. Can you guess what the front side is called? OK, I’ll tell you. It’s the “right” side. This way any potential for pencil marks to dirty the facing side is prevented. Then I had my…hair cut, if you will. Lamb worked very carefully, cutting around the flowers within my design yet still keping the pattern angles and fine lines. I was in a total of five pieces when she finished (front, two backsides and two sleeves).
I was sewn together with matching thread as soon as the pattern cutting was finished. This is common practice for most fabrics as raw edges will start to fray if left alone for too long. I can relate this to hygiene for humans. It’s just a necessary step where timing is very relevant. The construction went much quicker than I initially thought it would. The final steps were the trimmings, treated as my jewelry. The zip was my necklace and the additional lace flowers with black, glass beadwork were my rings and earrings. Although, this took a bit longer than simply clasping a necklace. Instead the jewelry was handmade to be a part of me. Lamb had to make sure the flowers were not placed awkwardly but instead so that their delicate touch made the viewer’s eyes flow in a pleasing way. To accomplish this, the lace details were first pinned and then modeled before being sewn on.
Below are look book images, which Cynthia Tzitzis, a photographer from Greece took in the JENN LAMB atelier.
The sewing machine’s needle was Jenn Lamb’s magic wand and when she was finished, I looked fit for a ball.