A little over two years ago I started the Gemma Textiles Clothing project. Originally it was just a personal thing, trying to rationalise and stylise my own wardrobe. I ended up remaking and making from scratch lots of new designs because I couldn't find what I wanted on the high street.
The best of my designs, were refined and experimented on, resulting in the dozen or so garments I regularly make now.
I do of course, mostly wear my own makes, some of them the original toiles, some I've stolen from stock. The old favourites, get worn and worn again, and I've ended up with nearly all of my wardrobe staples in the 'needs mending again' pile.
These are my prototype Yana trouser, a basic remodelling of an A-line skirt. Scrunched up from the mending pile, worn thin, patched, and as my figure has 'relaxed' over the last year, they're uncomfortably tight.
My latest design development uses an elasticated waist, so my originals are going to be patched, added to down the sides and given a comfortable elastic waistband.
The last few years has found me learning lots of new skills, struggling A LOT with some of them, trying desperately to acknowledge success where I find it, and scrabbling around in the depths of my artist brain for motivation to keep a tiny business going against the tide. What has kept me going, is a love of making something, anything. The original obsession that fuelled my clothing project was being able to sculpt coverings for the body to find a new, grown-up identity. This inevitably resulted in ideas beyond my ability, leading to the time gaining new skills, these in turn give birth to new ideas that are 'good enough' to work on, and it's these ideas that become The Plan.
The next year will be focused on building Gemma Textiles online, taking pride in the Gemma Textiles 'look' and making a small business that will sustain itself and me into the future.