I have two loves in life: dogs and fashion. I try to combine them as often as I can, but sometimes a fashion opportunity comes up that’s just so good (and so not dog friendly), I have to pursue it! This past weekend I participated in the Material Worlds fashion show with designer Memphis George, and 9 others, presented by the Carnegie Museum of Art. I was so lucky to be able to participate in a number of ways. I was a model in the show, and had the pleasure of rocking an incredible design by my friend Memphis George. I was also selected as a blogger to cover the event inspired by the current Iris Van Herpen exhibit at the museum. So, please read on to learn more about this fashion meets technology event that I’m still buzzing from!
I have know jewelry designer Memphis George for many years. I’m not exactly sure when I started collecting her jewelry, but I try to acquire a new piece every year. She creates fine art to wear jewelry and they are like little whimsical sculptures that you can wear every day. I usually find her at the Fair in the Park, and every year I spend about an hour at her booth trying on every single thing and debating over which treasure to take home with me. Last year I had Lucy with me at the Fair, and Memphis let her hang out behind the booth while I fussed with everything! The necklace I’m wearing above is one of her designs from a few years back.
In anticipation of the Material Worlds fashion show, I met Memphis at TechShop where she was laser cutting sheets of acrylic for one of her designs. I jumped in as a fit model while we talked about the show. Each artist/designer made two looks, so in addition to this laser cut dress, Memphis was also making a poured resin dress back at her studio (that’s the one I got to wear in the show!).
The day of the show, we arrived at the Ace Hotel Pittsburgh for a quick rehearsal and hair and makeup in the hotel rooms. Memphis made the final adjustments on my dress, and headpiece title Moon Lorn and inspired by another local artist Malcolm Parcell’s home and studio. “The dress sports epoxy resin panels covered by tiny micro-filament wires that give it a subtle extension – like an aura… The dress has a painterly feel and is meant to be ethereal.” Observer-Reporter.
“The fashion show changes the paradigm of how people interact with art because the art, in this case, is mobile, and the person wearing the dress becomes, in effect, the art gallery.” –Memphis George
The fashion show was such a thrill to model in! My co-model Madeline Gradle is a student at Pittsburgh Ballet Theater, so she really rocked the tutu silhouette of the laser cut dress. I felt like we both looked like etherial goddesses from another planet. When we walked the runway and looked out at the audience, the room was packed in every direction. Everyone was taking photos, videos and shouting in excitement.
I’m still feeling the buzz of excitement three days later! It was such an honor to be able to wear this amazing one-of-a-kind creation by Memphis George. I think she did a superb job of embracing the Iris Van Herpen vibe, and used really unexpected materials. One of the things we talked about was how ironic is it that the dresses were make for plastic and resin, yet they had such an earthly, elemental look to them.
Thank you for humoring me with a fashion post today! Lucy can’t do absolutely everything with me, every once in a while I need to go out on my own! I certainly think I made the most of a dog free night! If you can make it to Pittsburgh to see the Iris Van Herpen exhibit, I highly recommend it. She’s transforming fashion, even Vogue is taking notice!
Photos from Top:
1, 2, 3: Christina Emilie Photography
4, 5: Celeste Van Kirk
6, 8: John Colombo Photography