Sometimes one type of fabric can inspire something new, or perhaps even an entire collection. While most of my fabrics fall into one of several categories that I’ll be exploring and sharing over the next several months, I can also be drawn to the off piece that doesn’t always blend easily with the others. Regardless, there’s something that spoke to me – whether color or texture – and I take it as a creative challenge to make it work with my other fabrics.
This was the case with a small amount of Herringbone tweed that I’ve been storing away for quite some time now, waiting for just the right moment and inspiration to strike. (Did you know that the pattern is called herringbone because it resembles the skeleton of a herring fish?) It’s not uncommon for me to find inspiration in fashion, so I turned to one of my Pinterest boards to gather some images. While my personal style isn’t particularity traditional, I still appreciate tailored menswear, and find an aesthetic balance when paired with more casual elements like denim and aged leather. It wasn’t long before my palette of colors, textures and pattern came together…. and then, a mini menswear collection of pouches.
I challenged myself to keep the fabric assortment fairly tight, with each pouch being some combination of the chosen fabrics. The result will be 8 pouches (2 each of large, medium, pencil-case, and coin & card size) each unique and one of a kind made up of the following menswear inspired fabrics:
- Herringbone Tweed
- Brushed Twill in shades of blue
- Oxford Stripe shirting
- Micro dots
- Worn leathers in cognac and whiskey
Coincidentally, it came with great timing that I realized January also is the month in which the Men’s Fashion Weeks take place, featuring Autumn/Winter 2017 collections. Fashion weeks are always an exciting and inspiring time for those who love to absorb all the visual eye candy both on and off the runways. While many of us will never make it to the “front row”, these days, some form of connectivity and exposure to these events has been made accessible through social media and quick turnaround from fashion websites. Vogue Runway typically posts full coverage images of each show within 24 hours and many designers even stream their shows live. However, I think my favorite source of inspiration revolving around the shows is still street style. Although it often has become something people strive for (and maybe not always so “natural”), I still feel that photographers like Tommy Ton and Scott Shuman of The Sartorialist do a good job capturing how runways have influenced trends, or better yet – catching that somebody with true, personal style.
Official Men’s Fashion Week Dates 2017
- London / Jan 6-9
- Pitti Uomo (Florence Menswear Tradeshow) / Jan 10-13
- Milan / Jan 14-17
- Paris / Jan 18 – 22
- Paris Haute Couture / Jan 22 – 26
- New York / Jan 30- Feb 2
It has been said that the true, first “street style” photographer to begin capturing people on the street with unique, personal style is the late (and great) Bill Cunningham. Although Bill passed away last June, he had been hitting the streets of New York City since the late 70’s snapping images for the New York Times. His popular columns On the Street and Evening Hours ran in the paper for nearly 30 years, prompting many people around the city to “dress for Bill”. He was well-known for the dedication and integrity he put into his passion, and of course – his legendary blue workman’s jacket (an inspiring garment in itself!).
Bill Cunningham in action (photo via NY Magazine)
So, while I finish up sewing and prepping the pouches for the Den & Delve Shop, keep your eyes on the Menswear shows this month and see what fabrics and colors have inspired the designers for the upcoming season. And keep watching my Instagram for process and updates on the mini Menswear collection. The 8 new pouches will launch before the end of January.