Katazome Dyeing

A Finished Textiles Katazome

Student work drying on the line – except for the first one on the left. That’s our teacher’s- it’s really pretty.

I took a an intensive weekend long workshop on Katazome at the Textile Arts Center. It’s a Japanese method of dyeing fabrics using a resist paste applied through a stencil (as defined in the Wikipedia). You can see traditional patterns online, but in our class, we used it to create designs of our own. Masters of this art took a lifetime to learn this technique. I personally want to be able to use it to create my own textile designs, and to apply it into my clothing that I make.

B Making Paste Katazome

Making the paste

C Adding the Paste Katazome

Our teacher, Sara Peterman is demonstrating on how to apply the paste to the fabric, using her own textile design

D Sarah textile katazome

Sara is showing us the results of the dye

E Students Working Katazome

Students working on their own textile designs

F After the Paste Katazome

The far left is the one I made. We are waiting for the paste to dry on our fabric before applying the dye.

I like this way of screenprinting. The paste consists of natural ingredients that are accessible (rice bran, rice flour, etc), and the tools are easy to find. I can do all of this at home. The only rare commodity is the paper for the stenciling but I found it!!

Sometimes doing something creative releases creativity. It opened up a portal in my soul, so I am constantly thinking about new designs.

G My final work

Drying my designs

I’m inspired to design from scratch, so the blog posts will more than likely be split up in sections. I will show you the dyeing, the patternmaking, and the sewing (and posts on different subjects in between :) )

It’s going to take awhile, but I know that it’s going to be a great Spring 2014. I can feel it!

Stay tuned xoxo

Shout Out Sunday: Oscar De La Renta


It’s amazing to see Anna Wintour, Mario Testino, Grace Coddington and Hamish Bowles sitting together in one place. The room exuded fashion powerhouses from every square inch of the room. Anna Dello Russo walked in with a gorgeous ODLR gown, but unfortunately, my photo didn’t take well. Aerin Lauder sat diagonal from us in front, and Barbara Walters made her point to say hello to the legendary designer.

As promised , in my previous post of the pants I designed, I said I would show more photos of the September 10th show, which happened during New York Fashion Week.

I thought the Spring 2014 collection is very ODLR, and it is absolutely gorgeous. That’s all I have to say, really. I am sure you can see the rest in WWD or Style.Com.

Born in the Dominican Republic, this 81 year old Couturier has made his mark in the world. I really hope to see many more of his beautiful creations. He’s one of the originals and no one can ever take his place.

DSC05216 DSC05224 DSC05226 DSC05229

A lot of dresses had the high/low hem  (not shown here), which is one of the inspirations for my very first design for Patterned After. That post  was also an homage to Oscar De La Renta.


I  seized the moment and had Paul take this photo! I will never forget this show.

Fashion Week Rocks.

I am in a workshop learning about Katazome resist dyeing this weekend. Hope to share the experience soon! xoxo

The Pant I Wore To Oscar De La Renta


Note to self: Wear lighter colors or stand in brighter areas when taking photos.

I made a pair of pants just for the Oscar De La Renta Spring 2014 show.

My inspiration: Oscar De La Renta and Spanish influence


Screen shot 2013-09-11 at 10.42.46 PM

Pattern # V7881 from voguepatterns.mccall.com

I chose a pattern from the Claire Schaeffer’s Custom Couture Collection – V7881 – from Voguepattern.com. She published an excellent book called “Couture Sewing Techniques”, which I used ALL the time while at Parsons and after. I highly recommend this book. When I discovered that Vogue Pattern collaborated with her, I was all over it. Sure enough, the pant fit beautifully.

I chose a pattern one size smaller in the waist and hip area so that I could grade up. If you aren’t too sure how to go up a size, I recommend getting the pattern a size bigger. During your muslin fitting, you can reduce it in the areas you need.

I went to Mood Fabric on 37th Street and found a charcoal colored wool fabric from Giorgio Armani. Originally, I wanted to make a pair of kelly green pants, but decided against it. I felt I would wear darker colors more often than a bold green. I also found the Carolina Herrera lace from Mood.

I followed the instructions exactly how they were written. It’s important to trace every part of the pattern, whether if it’s thread tracing or chalk. I used thread tracing 99% of the time and chalk 1%. Though it was tedious, it was worth it. For sure.

The only difference is that I added lace to the sides before I sewed up the inseams of the pant. I hand sewed it because I don’t have an applique machine. I also used hook & eyes for closure instead of buttons.


Et voila! You have yourself a bespoke pair of pants! Finishing the insides wasn’t said in the pattern instructions. I suggest bias binding or add lining.




I wore them with a Zara one pocket shirt with epaulets, a Zara necklace, and vintage Oscar De La Renta heels that my sweet Paul surprised me with.

Tomorrow, I’ll have more about the show itself. Stay tuned! xoxo

Shout Out Sunday: Designer Tomas Maier


Walking Greta while wearing my Tomas Maier shirt dress

I wanted to give a quick shout out to Tomas Maier- he was appointed by Tom Ford to be the Creative Director for Bottega Veneta.  He’s the reason why I admire this Italian luxury house so I wanted to know more about him.

Since I’m taking a few days in Palm Beach, Paul and I headed over to Worth Avenue to check out his store. Since it is August, most of the stores were closed, so I was happy to see that his boutique was open. Though it’s located on this famous avenue, it was still off the beaten path. Tucked away and slightly hidden, we had to walk past an antique store and  up a flight of stairs in a courtyard. Upon entering, the store was light, airy, with the doors wide open. It had a welcome feel and an unpretentious vibe. The boutique was minimalistic with a very friendly sales person.  It did not have a lot of product which is somewhat of a catch-22, but then I was able to see everything that was in the store.

Tomas Maier Store

Tomas Maier Store 2

Since I was able to see everything,  I saw a  simple yet beautifully constructed shirtdress made just for me :)


I paired it with my tribal inspired Zara necklace with heels one day, and another time, a simple gold necklace my Grandmother gave me and my Coach neon yellow sandals. What I love about this “Made in Italy” dress is that I could wear it inside out and no one could tell the difference. It’s made that well.

Tomas Maier is not about showing off. The logo is a bright orange palm tree, but placed on the belt of the dress, where it’s less noticeable.  In my mind, this dress is an investment. Excellent quality means long lasting.


IMG_4007So yeah. I can walk Greta, go to the grocery store, have drinks at The Breakers hotel , sit on a ledge with a croquet field behind me as I text message people, all the while wearing this black shirtdress.

It’s. That. Versatile.

September is fashion week and a busy month full of events. Stay tuned for future fashion related posts and my next project – A pair of pants embellished with lace!

Thanks again for visiting. Touch base soon! xo

7.23 : Shirt


That’s me and Paul, my boyfriend. We’re waiting for the show to begin, the first of many tools to promote the record that he produced – Red Hot+FELA. It was AWESOME and I am so proud of him. The very first song began and the crowd went crazy. Security couldn’t control the audience that night. To top it all off, I finished the shirt I custom made for him, just in time for his birthday -7/23. He wore it during the show and it makes my heart melt to know that he loves it.

Originally, I was going to make a boyfriend shirt, something for me to steal from his closet. During the process, I realized that his style just isn’t the same as mine, so I customized the shirt to him. After all, I wanted to give him a special birthday present, and it wouldn’t have been cool if I made it to suit my style. Don’t get me wrong, I love his style, but it’s for him.

front back

All the details were carefully chosen, from the fabric to the buttons to the thread color.


I briefly explained the process in my previous post, when I thought that there was no way I would complete the shirt by his birthday. Clearly, I became obsessive and finished it. I also couldn’t have done it without the help of Jonathan Embroidery, one of the only places in the NY Garment District that makes buttonholes.

pattern comparison

Here, Paul is introducing the show. Photo on the right was taken by David Andrako

I used a Kwik Sew Pattern, #3883 as the foundation. Aside from changing the fabric, I altered the pattern a little by adding a navy panel to the pocket.  For the rest of the pocket, I had cut it on bias, and did the same for the back yoke. I also didn’t top stitch the entire collar and the cuffs, as the instructions say to do. I didn’t find it necessary and felt it took away the sharpness of the shirt. The inside was finished with french seams and bias binding with contrasting fabric at the armholes.


Photo Credit: David Andrako

Can you find Paul in this photo?

Best. Show. Ever.


NEXT PROJECT: It’s going to be a surprise because I don’t know even know!! All I know  is that it will have clean lines  with details and intricate craftsmanship. I’m taking it back to my roots, yo. 

In the meantime, I just found out about Bloglovin’ . I’m a little behind in time. I would absolutely love it if you added Patterned After to your stream, but hey, I’m not complaining. I am happy that you’re here reading it and thank you! 

Stay tuned and see you very soon x

Summertime Rolls

The past month, I’ve been making a Boyfriend Shirt.  It’s just…it’s hard to not be outdoors, on the beach, or listening to music….

I really wanted to have the shirt by July 23rd, my boyfriend’s birthday. Ain’t happening. I had this whole thing planned. I was hoping he would wear it on the day of a music concert he is putting together for a record he produced….which, by the way, if you’re in New York on July 24th, there’s a FREE outdoor concert called Red Hot + FELA, in honor of Fela Kuti, a human rights activist, and pioneer of Afrobeat.  I am so excited and proud of him, but he won’t be wearing the shirt that night, unless he wants sleeveless and no buttons.

I can show you the process so far:


I measured him, according to the Kwik Sew pattern (#3883) I found online. I did a very quick sketch so I could have something to work off of.


I gave him swatches to choose from


He chose two from the swatches, and the navy came later


I manipulated the pattern a little and then made the muslin from it. I then did a fitting on him. The sleeves were too short so I extended it. This is also where Paul (my BF) said “Hey, wouldn’t it be cool to make the top part of the pocket navy” ? I said, “Okay”.


So far, here it is with no buttons, collar or sleeves.


I also went to look for buttons and got navy ones but now I think maybe white. What do you think? Please excuse my chipped nail polish.

I am actually lugging my sewing machine all the way to New Jersey this weekend so I can go to the beach AND sew. If it’s a productive weekend (on the sewing) then I can post it next week. If not, then the following.

In the meantime, I named this post “Summertime Rolls” because I thought of that song by Jane’s Addiction. That whole Summer thing I’m going through… then it lead me to think about “Summertime” by Scarlett Johansson. Who do you think her song was modeled after (or patterned after!…okay, I’m being a nerd) – I’ve got it right here in the playlist below. ENJOY.

Behind The Scenes Photoshoot – Cocktail Dress: Renna

Video credit: My boyfriend, Paul

I had so much fun doing this photoshoot for the cocktail dress I made for my first Patterned After post. It was shot by Chris Dinerman in an East Village Apartment.

So it wasn’t a high tech studio and I still like to pretend I am a model.

I enjoy the small things in life

Still working on that jumpsuit and will post shortly. Hint: It’s blue and silky.