A Handmade Tail
by Jyssica Yelas
Portland is no stranger to the local or handmade movement. In fact, it’s become a well-known staple of the city. But what about the artists and designers who are taking it to the next level or, dare I say, layer?
In 2017, we all have a lot to say. We want to be seen and heard, and to contribute to a larger cause. Now how does this relate to the clothing we put on our bodies? Hear me out.
Creators near and far are taking it upon themselves to help their fans wear their hearts on their sleeves, or anywhere else for that matter. Whether it’s a hand-stitched miniature mountain scene or a painted statement of opinion, expressing oneself by means of dress has never been easier, or more on-trend.
Take your wardrobe and personal brand to the next level with a piece from one of these local designers. Be seen, heard, and feel good about where your dollars go when you shop from one of these local ladies:
Normal Weirdo, Sugar Mountain Vintage
“Normal Weirdo” is a collaborative collection by artist Corbin Lamont and stylist Victoria Mesenbrink that has been popping up in Instagram feeds and niche boutiques all about town. Each piece is one-of-a-kind, beginning with Mesenbrink’s sourced and salvaged garments, mostly denim and jackets, and hand-painted with Lamont’s hand-painted words, ranging from the abstract, “free ticket to heaven,” to uplifting messages like “the practice is the process.” Love it or leave it, there is a statement being made here. Corbin tweeted on July 12, “[I] Truly love how much fashion upsets people.”
Photo: Evie McShane
Laurs Kemp Rohmer Series, Backtalk
Laurs Kemp, self-described as an “apparel collection of considered basics and dreamy one-offs, inspired by cinema and the female gaze,” offers handmade embroidered pieces in her Rohmer series. Each piece in this series is inspired by a still from a Eric Rohmer film, featuring different embroideries of the female form on various part of her tops and pants. This summer, Kemp is committing to being waste-free, and making garments exclusively using fabrics and garments already in her studio. (This means flash sales and discounted prices for the rest of us!)
If a customized vintage denim jacket is what you’re after, there’s a local label for that too. Enter Rhipped label, a new streetwear apparel brand founded by 22-year old Dawn Myers. Rhipped label offers different variations of their signature “Street Jacket” (shown above) as well as custom denim orders. Myers alters, paints on, and distresses vintage denim finds, and works with customers to create a unique denim experience for “the every day hustle.”
Photo: Rhipped label