Designer Profile: Chynna Pope

Thank you to the lovely and talented Daniela and Brian of The BEARWALK for this awesome video!

Chynna Pope – Fashion Designer from Bearwalk on Vimeo.

Check out my BearWalking friends here: http://www.thebearwalk.com/

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Social Deviance Collection

Society- A group of people sharing the same geographical or social territory; typically subject to the same political authority and dominant expectations.

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Deviance- A rejection of social norms; an absence of conformity

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 Social Deviance

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In a world where black and white are opposites and leather and chiffon shall not be combined, I break the rules.  Fashion allows us to express our views on life through the medium of clothing.  This collection represents the modern day woman.  She is sassy, chic, tough and functional.  She floats in to any situation with beauty and grace, but is armed with stinging wit and ruthless intelligence.  Meet the ladies of the new era of Social Deviance.

chynna group jean

 chynna moto point chynna moto very chynna

chynna moto backchynna sbrittany jean chynna steph long shirt back chynna steph long shirt front

chynna group dresses

chynna brittany dress front

Chynna Brittany dress back chynna flow dres wow chynna flow dress back

Thank you

Stephanie Spooner and Brittany Johnson for bringing my garments to life with style and grace

and

Cole McNair for doing our make-up and making us look like rock stars

and

Special thanks to Pierce Harman for being a great photographer and an even better teacher and friend.

http://pierceharman.zenfolio.com/

*All garments were designed and produced by Chynna Pope with locally sourced materials*

for more information on the collection contact: Chynna.pope@gmail.com

Marimekko Rain Coat

This is the Raincoat I created out of Marimekko fabric

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Crafted using a combination of heavy weight black cotton twill,  sweater sleeves, and a multi-colored  print by Finnish textile and apparel company Marimekko, I made a raincoat.  I got the black twill from a local fabric store, Winmill Fabrics.  The sweater sleeves were sourced from from a sweater I bought from Wet Seal.  Not normally a store I shop at, I do not turn my nose up at any store where I may procure cheap materials.  In this case I was able cut off the sleeves, reshaping the sleeve cap to match the existing armhole in the coat I had already constructed.  The sleeve set in beautifully.  The printed fabric was generously donated by the Marimekko store on Newbury Street.

Winmill Fabrics
111 Chauncy St,
Boston, MA 02111
(617) 542-1815

Marimekko
140 Newbury St
Boston, MA
(617) 778-0666
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Front and back view of coat. Middle section “siirtolapuutarha” detail

With a number colorful prints and patterns to choose from at Marimekko, it was hard to choose the perfect textile for my coat.  The options were a plenty, but the siirtolapuutarha print really spoke to me.

This particular textile was designed by artist Maija Louekar.  On the Merimekko website, her design is aptly described as:

Dream- A flower blooms from the grey concrete. A morsel of nature in the urban jungle.
Inspire- Strolling the streets of the city, Maija Louekari marvels at the tiny gardens tucked into the nooks of urban life. Siirtolapuutarha is Finnish for allotment, which refers to the community gardens allotted to city dwellers.
Design- Vibrant colors burst from bold, black outlines. It’s a traditional flower pattern renewed into a modern wonder. A splash of life budding into a monochrome landscape.
Story-A flower steals the hardened heart of the city.”

http://usstore.marimekko.com/fabric/siirtolapuutarha-coated-cotton.asp

20140110-163226.jpgI decided on a cape-like design for the coat.  I thought the bold pattern might be too over powering if I used it for the entire thing, so I used it only for the mini caplet. I lined the caplet using an accent color from the print: a vibrant teal. for kicks I also made a kind of make-shift label from the selvage of the fabric. creative and industrious if I do say so myself.  Cute and official looking right?

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In an effort to keep with coat simple, I decided not to fuss with a lining.  To do this I sewed the body of the jacket together with the seams to the outside, then covering the raw edges in 1″ bias strips of the Marimekko fabric, then top stitched it down for  a nice finish. So I killed two birds with one stone: creating a clean finished garment without a lining and adding some coordinated design details to tie the whole look together.  The inside facings are also finished in narrower bias strips in the same lively print covering all raw edges.  The hemline is also finished in the fun print with a bias binding.

20140110-163747.jpgFor the finishing touch, I made 5 covered buttons out of the same fabric and attached them to the jacket to pull the whole thing together!

http://us.marimekko.com/

…. And made in less than 24 hours
😉

This coat was featured in Boston Magazine!

http://www.bostonmagazine.com/fashion-style/blog/2014/05/07/school-fashion-design/

50 shades of Grey bathing suit

Now don’t get all carried away with the title of this piece.   50 Shades of grey definitely supplied some inspiration, but not in the way you probably hope.  There are no whips, chains, or blindfolds included in this design, not even any leather!  So what’s he connection with 50 Shades of Grey you ask?   Check it out….I think you’ll be able to figure it out.

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So, realistically, there are only 10 shades of grey represented in this design, but it’s a literal translation.   I think its a great start.  While you may be disappointed learn that this bathing suit has absolutely nothing to do with sex dungeons or S&M, you should be pleased with the end result anyways.  If its any consolation, it was somewhat painful constructing this suit but ever so pleasurable seeing the design come through fruition.

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This bathing suit was made for a sportswear class at The School of Fashion Design.  Along with a few other assignments this season, the class was asked to create bathing suits.  In celebration of the the school’s 80th anniversary.  These bathing suits had to be inspired by the 1930’s.  A number of projects have been put in to place throughout the school to honor the school’s longevity, but I thought this one was the most interesting to report on.

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For this design, I wanted to maintain some semblance of authenticity, so I kept my bathing suit a one piece as many of the swimwear was back then.   I also wanted to add some old school glamor so I looked for inspiration from one of my favorite stars from the 30’s: Miss Ginger Rogers.

Ginger Rogers big2

Remember, everything that Fred Astaire did, she did backwards in heels!

(famous quote said by someone other than myself)

Ginger Rogers majestic swingtime_l

The color selection….totally inspired by black and white films.

As for the rest of the design, I wanted to make something was fitted, yet modest.  The layers of ruffles just kind of came to me when I was sketching .  I thought it would be an interesting take on a flouncy ball gown in bathing suit form.  The fabric is sporty and stretchy so its totally comfortable and functional.  This said, I haven’t actually swam in it yet…I think it has the potential to become very heavy saturated in water….maybe not the best suit for a swim race. However, I do know that it is going to look totally killer floating down a runway.

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Shown above is the cover-up to go with the bathing suit.  It’s basically a chiffon cape with a big hood.  Perfect to throw on after a long day at the beach after a little too much sun, or perhaps to wear to a beach bar to have some fun?  With a handful of Swarovski crystals strategically placed this fun piece effortlessly transitions from daytime to night time in a snap! Just imagine it flowing in the wind as you strut your stuff down the boardwalk…sexy!

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Model Katu wears the suit at The School of Fashion Design Fashion Show

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I found this awesome little website on this history of swimwear.  Check it out!

http://mikohswimwear.com/blog/a-quick-and-brief-history-of-swimwear-1930s/2010/05/

 

 

Christmas duds

Goodness gracious! Is it really December already? It’s really almost over?! Where did the time go!?

But it’s not quite over yet. Get out your jingles and jollies, your hollies and follies…

It is certainly still that time of year!

Greens reds and golds… Typical Christmas colors. I know, I know… We’re all sick of it. It’s so cliche. But there is something to classic tradition. With great admiration for Christmas I thought it very appropriate to make a Christmas dress.

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Here’s the process…. Oh and was it ever a process. Do you see these pleats!?

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You have to be so precise when sewing these pleats. You have to line up every one of the stripes in the plaid and But on with the show… Check it out!

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This is the muslin.

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And here’s it is all coming together….
I paired this beautiful green and black iridescent silk taffeta, vintage wool “Christmas plaid” and quilted black lamb skin leather. I love adding a little leather to a design. I think it provides a great accent to an otherwise classic color combination giving it an edgy feel.

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And…. The final product with all the bells and whistles and belts and buckles

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I made this sweet Scottish hat to top the whole outfit off…..

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And these bow ties too….

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By Beacon Hill bow tie club of course!

MERRY CHRISTMAS! Be merry!!!

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Love to you and yours from,

The Beacon Hellion
Xx

BLACK AND WHITE Fashion

Jeeeeeze! It’s been a while huh? I know you’ve probably missed me and wondered where the heck I have been. Worry not. I have not gone far. I’ve just been stuck behind my sewing machine working on a few projects.  While most are still in the “muslin” stage, I would love to show you one of my newer finished pieces.   Check it out!

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This dress, being my most recent creation, is definitely one of my favorites.  I designed, and sewed this garment for a draping class at The School of Fashion Design.  Given my first go at proper draping, I think I did a pretty alright job.  Of course, I did not do it all alone.  I had great instruction from my teacher Daniel Faucher, who is a Boston based couturier.  Specializing in bridal, evening and special occasion, Daniel lives in a world of glamour, opulence, and fanciful beauty.  His garments exude class, sophistication, and a certain je ne sais pas that I think only lives in fairy tales.   This man is truly a wealth of information.  He willingly shares his tricks of the trade, perhaps knowing full well it will take us years and years to even come close to nipping at his heels.  Fancy laces, applique techniques, hand sewing, elaborate finishes, beading , and gorgeous hem treatments are just some examples of things I have learned about while in this master’s presence.  But the most important thing I have learned, I discovered on my own: The devil is in the details!  But alas, I must remember not to get too overwhelmed, discouraged, or intimidated, after all, “A perfect garment is just one  muslin away!”

While you may enjoy following my progress as I develop in to a fashion designer, check out Mr. Faucher’s work….pretty impressive stuff I must say!

http://www.danielfauchercouture.com/

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Daniel-Faucher-Couture/176163739075242

Aaaaaanyways.  Back to me!

Let me take you through a few of the steps it takes to actually make a garment.

First:  You have to start with an idea.  Got one?  Great!  Now sketch it.  I alway do a couple versions of the same thing.  You know, Like variations on a theme.  You’d be surprised how much of a difference the smallest changes can make.

See what you’ve got, and pick your favorite!

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“Sketchy sketch”

Next:  Come back down to earth.  A quick visit to “designers la la land” will definitely get the sketches done, but now you have to figure out if this design is even possible.  At this stage you have to work out something called a “Plot sheet.”  This is basically where you figure out the shape of your pattern pieces, how they fit together and to see if your dream garment can actually become a reality.    Remember, anything is possible in “la la land” but not so much in the real world with real people with real bodies try to wear your clothes.  Clearly this stage can be a real buzz kill, but once you’ve got a rough idea of your design components, you can actually start putting the puzzle pieces together.

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Chosen design and Rough Plot Sheet

From there: Start draping!!!!  Throw some muslin on a dress form and play!  With the right skills and a little bit of know-how, you can manipulate a sheet of material in to something truly spectacular.

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“Rough draft”
draping stage in the work room

Now that the design is starting to take shape, and you have somewhat of an idea of the supplies you will need to complete your vision, its time to go SHOPPING!  Woowho!

Fabric Place Basement is my fabric store of choice around the Boston Area.  (Going to New York every time I need material is just a bit much….even for me!) In any case, Fabric Place has such a great range of fabrics, trims, notions, and supplies that I don’t need to go anywhere else. so much so that I hardly ever have to order from NYC or visit other stores.  With a wide array of fabrics  ranging from luxury silks and leather skins, to athletic knits to outdoor upholstery fabrics, this place has got everything that you are looking for!  20130806-181342.jpg

Sometimes I get to go out back and scope the shipments before the hit the floor!  I have found some amazing remnants, exclusive designer silks, and other novelty goods I’ve seen nowhere else.

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*Fun Fact: one time I even skateboarded around the back warehouse with the owner’s kids….so Fun! 
So.  For this dress I chose to work with some beautiful white silk chiffon and ivory silk crepe I picked up at Fabric Place Basement.  I LOVE working with chiffon.  Some may think I am crazy, but I enjoy the challenge of working with the slippery, light, uncontrollable materials.  The end result is always much greater than the struggle and strive encountered on the way there.  🙂  I also decided to add some soft black lamb skin leather to my design for contrast.  I think the etherial white chiffon paired with solid black leather achieves a paradoxical match.  Though inate opposites, I really enjoy the textural and chromatically juxtaposition.  It kind of works…. Like Yin and Yang…..It’s not like I invented this idea or anything! DUH!
YinYang
Anyways….I guess what I’m getting at is, the fact that the pairing of Chiffon and leather is somewhat unexpected but it totally works.  I think that makes it badass.  It’s kinda like a bondage ballerina, or a punk at the country club.  Its a strange dichotomy that really works!
But blah blah blah…on with the process.
"Hanging Out"

Fabric details:
Gathered chiffon (for bodice)
Black lamb skin trapunto/ topstitching detail (back of bodice)

Here’s a picture of my chiffon hanging out on a dress form.  When working with chiffon it is important to let it hang for at least 24 hours.  The delicate fabric needs time to stretch out and settle into it’s final shape.  Cutting unrested fabrics can result in a bounce-back effect that is most undesirable leaving your hems uneven and your bodices lopsided.  YIKES/YUCK!  So to avoid that problem, I let my chiffon hang for a couple of days to ensure avoidance of this catastrophe.

In my case, it was especially important to allow my fabrics to hang for a substantial amount of time because of the type of skirt I was creating for the dress.  I designed the dress with 4 gathered quarter circle skirts.  This means the skirt hangs through all of the grain lines of the material: Straight grain, Bias, and Cross Grain.  Each reacting differently to gravity.  Straight grain stretching the least and bias the most.  Sounds pretty complicated….and IT IS!    I’d explain it further….but this blog is already wordy enough as it is.

Look!  More shots from the work room!

(At the House of Hinds Lines and Designs)

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A back view and front view of the bodice mid production.

The skirt and Bodice coming together….

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To make the final product! WHO-RAY!

Pretty snazzy eh?

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What’s even cooler, is that shortly after finishing this labor of love it was put on display at The School of Fashion design where it was completed.  So very exciting!

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New dress displayed with another one of my works at The School of Fashion Design

Now, What could be cooler than your very own window display on Newbury St?

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I know…..your very own window display on Newbury st. on Halloween!

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“Trick or Treat!”

Or even COOLER yet!  Your very own window display on Newbury st. with your mannequins suited and booted in Red Sox regalia after winning the WORLD SERIES! ……oh ya…..and having this all done on the day of the Big Parade!  Not bad exposure if I do say so myself!

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“Home Run Fashion”

I should add some pictures of a person actually wearing this dress shouldn’t I?

Action Shots coming soon!

Thanks for reading!