Where It All Began. . . .
I grew up sewing, thanks to my mom. She had taught herself, as a teenager, and as I grew, she taught me to sew alongside her. She did beautiful work, and often told me there was no point in doing work I wasn't proud of. She also made me do the hard stuff, when I was ready for it, like zippers, and buttonholes, saying that I might not want to wear pull-on pants all my life so I'd better learn closures.
When I was in college, I lucked into a work-study job in the costume shop of the theatre program. With my solid foundation, and the help and guidance of the several amazing women who taught and worked there, I found that I was on the path to a career that I hadn't even known existed when I started. I spent twenty-three years making costumes, working in what is known as regional theatre. These theatres produce their own work, from the ground up, including costumes, and I have worked with some truly amazing and talented designers over the years and in some really wonderful costume shops -- ten years on the East Coast, primarily in Boston, and thirteen years in Houston, at the Alley Theatre.
I worked my way up the ladder to become a draper, which is a position that entails interpreting a designer's rendering to make the pattern and oversee the construction. This is complicated work, because the philosophy is more about making real clothes, not something disposable that only looks good from the outside. Corsets, petticoats, the whole shebang. It's a pretty awesome thing to do for a living.
But, I hit a point where I really really needed to do my own thing. So I started Diamond Dust Studio as a way to express myself, in my own way, yet maintain the quality ethic I had absorbed both through my mom and my career in theatre. My mission is to create beautiful things that are functional and durable as well.
I can't seem to stop myself.