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October 25, 1991 - Image 18

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1991-10-25

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.



o 10k


by JoAnne Viviano
Daily Staff Reporter
Students at the 'U' may soon
cast aside their Girbaud *and
Guess. They may turn their
backs on Eddie Bauer, The Gap,
and Express. They may soon
discover alternate names to
wear: Anderson, Lalonde, Smith,
Allison, Babcock, Van Do, Van
These new names belong to
students on campus who design
their own creations. And while
the University provides no for-
mal curriculum for fashion de-
sign students, from the Art
school to Law school, students
can be found hard at work over
sewing machines and trays of
beads, creating their own cloth-
ing and jewelry.
Art School students term
their creations 'wearable art.'
"Art is a grey area that can
overlap into being - fashion-
able," said graduate student
Anne Anderson. "But I like to
think it's something you can
wear forever. It's not in one
year and out the next."
Anderson designs both wear-
able and non-wearable gar-
ments. "I just got into, coats. I
made one out of paper and a
couple out of fabric. I'm. head-
ing toward making dresses," she
Anderson's creative mind
finds various sources inspiring.
"I get ideas just from things I
doodle," she said. "I also get in-
spiration from the look of eth-.
nic textiles and national cos-
The artist said she does not
produce her creations for com-
mercial gain but for personal
satisfaction. "It's so much fun to
be able to wear a piece of art, to
be surrounded in it, and have it
move when you move," she
said. "You become a part of the
"(My works) all have special
meaning to me, which is why I
wouldn't sell them," she added.
"When making a piece of art,
you put your heart into it."
Art School junior Suzanne

Lalonde holds a different view.
"You have to have a source of
income. A lot of people still in
school don't want to admit
that," she said. "There's got to
be something commercial
about it."
Lalonde seasons her 'talent
by creating scarves, evening
wraps, and shawls using a tech-
nique called Arashi Shibori.
This Japanese dyeing technique
involves compressing paper or
fabric by wrapping it around a
pole before dyeing. "I don't do
traditional Shibori. I've takenI
the techniques and personal-
ized .hem," she said.
The designer was introduced
to Shibori five, years ago
through a workshop. "It was so
hard for me, I was determined
to get good at it," she said.
Despite her acceptance of
the commercial aspect of art-
work, Lalonde said she plans to
turn her back on the business
arena. "My goal is .to turn (my
art) into something non-com-
mercial," she said.
Art school senior Dan Smith
concentrates his talents primar-
ily on hats and jewelry. "I
mostly make (my works) for
myself or close friends, to ex-
press their enthusiasm in life -
or lack of it," he said. "Art is
not an object in and of itself.
It's an emotional reaction be-.
tween the artwork and the audi-
Smith's favorite creation is
his 'attitude hat.' "It's loose and'
conforms any way you want. If
you're happy you can make it
happy. If your pissed off at the
world, you can make it-look like
that," Smith said. "People have
been very responsive. They see
me on the street and say, 'Make'
me one of those.'"
However, Smith never com-
plies to such requests. "I'll do a'
knock-off of it, (but all my hats)
are from individual patterns I
make originally," he said.
Designers Fortuni and Erte
display the style Smith sees as
inspiration. "I ' also look to'
1800's dress and the late middle

ages," he said. "All artwork is a
regeneration of ideas. I look to
the past for most of my infor-
mation and reinterpret it."
Student designers are not ex-
clusive to the art school, how-"
.Residential. College sopho-
more Matti Allison felt her
Elements of Design class stifled
creativity. "(The class) crippled
my style. They. want you to be
very tight, very controlled," she

there's going to be a lot of work
and starving in between."
Second year law student
Tainblyn Babcock feels
'starving' is not worth it. "I'm
not really interested in selling.
It's harder than it's worth," 'she
said. "A great majority of my
work is still in my jewelry box."
'Babcock has produced her
own jewelry since 1978 when
she traveled to England with
her mother. "I found a pair of
earrings and decided I wanted

cate what you are, it's a loss."
The designer has 'been
styling 'career, after five,' and ex-
travaganza wear for six years. "I
like elegance, sophistication,
and confidence. Those are the
three words that govern my de-
signs," she said. She added that
Christian Dior and Donna
Karan are her favorite design-
However, Van Do is not con-
fident that her designing will
develop. into .a comparable ca-
reer. "I'm thinking about pursu-
ing it.after I get a masters or a
JD, ... later in life after I've es-
tablished myself and have fi-
nancial support,", she said.
LSA sophomore Nicole Van
Dyke plans to take a different
course. "I want to go to-design
school after U of M. I think I'll
go to New York," she said.
. The woman's clothing de-
signer is also considering study-
ing in Germany. "My mom is a
seamstress (who) went to fash-
ion school in Berlin," she said.
Van Dyke traveled 'to Berlin last
summer, where she 'worked with
one of her mother's classmates
in a design studio.
Van Dyke remembers sewing:
her first dress when she was in
ninth grade. '"You could have
wadded it up and put it in.a
purse. It was like a slip," she
said.."But it didn't fall apart un-
til I got home."
"From then on. '(my mom)
decided to work with'-me," she
Van Dyke' said that some of
her most prized creations since
are renovated from the past.
"My mom kept (theater ' suits)
she made in the 'sixties. I
'adapted them and now I wear
them," she added.
Van Dyke's favorite -design-
ers are Helmut Lang and
' Azzedine Alai. "They're the
most, 'innovative today, the
neatest and sleekest," she said.
University students just might
find themselves looking, at the
creations of these seven student
artists and designers some day
and repeating Van .Dyke's
words: "They're the most inno-
vative today."

- dd4*

Anne Anderson

designs by.
Matti Allison

Allison designs women's
clothing. "It's definitely very
feminine clothing, lingerie
styled, but not sleazy," she said.
"I like dresses. I think they're
very flattering and very femi-
nine, especially small delicate-
looking dresses that look like
Designer Romeo Gigli serves
as Allison's role model. "I' like
the shapes. He's very unusual,"
she said. "He's modern and soft
at the same time."
The designer plans to pursue
her pastime as a career. "I'd like
to go to grad school in fashion
and move to Italy, but I know

Noy andrn
Nlco7 0oDyke dold by
to make them for myself. Ever
since, I've been hooked,"' she
"Sometimes I'll just sit down
and make a pair (of earrings) or
sometimes I'll see something in
a magazine," she added.
Babcock's favorite piece is
her flag necklace. "It's made by
bead weaving. I really like flags
so when I bought a bead Idom, I
decided to make the necklace
with flags," she said.
LSA senior Tuong Van Do
enjoys creating for others. "I
really enjoy designing for -peo-
ple. It's a .way to express your-
"Communication is a vital
part of our society," she added.
"(Clothing) is a way to,.commu-
nicate. If you don't communi-



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