Wednesday, May 13, 2020

Feeding America Fundraiser


Like many designers, I’ve been sewing non-medical masks for front line workers, family and friends.  I’ve donated over 50 masks and experimented with several patterns and designs. 

If you’ve worn a mask for any period of time, I’m sure you realize that they can be uncomfortable, at best.  I’ve finally settled on one that ticks all of the boxes for wearability, comfort and, yes, style. 
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I’ve created a limited edition of custom masks with matching storage bags from my original fabric designs. I’m selling them to raise funds for Riverside and San Bernardino County’s “Feeding America.”  It’s the Inland Empire’s largest and most efficient hunger relief organization.

This link will take you to my online store where you’ll find the collection under the heading “Feed America Fundraiser.”  The purchase price includes shipping and 75% of all proceeds will be donated to the food bank.  If you are able to collaborate with me in this effort, I would deeply appreciate it.  I understand if you are not able or already helping in other ways.  We’re all in this together.


Monday, April 13, 2020

Making Masks

With the corona virus quarantine, we've all been ordered to stay home and stay healthy. I've had a whole lot of time on my hands. One can only reorganize closets and scroll through Pinterest for so long. The CDC advised everyone to wear masks when leaving the house, so I decided to start sewing some. I have quite a nice collection of fabric leftovers and scraps- enough to piece together fitted masks with elastic ear bands. 

I experimented with a few different mask patterns before landing on the one I've been using. Medical professionals prefer the style with ties but I found through informal surveys that when they're needed for short period of time, the elastic bands are preferred.

I put out a message on my IG stories asking if anyone needed masks...with preference to frontline workers and people with compromised immune systems. The first few days I received requests for over 40 masks and had them ready for pickup within three days. (On Instagram I'm @lorimarsha )

Then America ran out of elastic. Am continuing to cut out the fabric and waiting (im)patiently for my elastic to come in. Still taking requests if you're local to Redlands or are willing to pay postage to receive. Email me at lmsandsted(at)gmail.com if you have questions. Stay safe out there.









Thursday, February 27, 2020

Revisiting Early Work


I was working in my studio a couple of days ago, digging deep into storage when I found a few of my early pieces I had completely forgotten about. They're from 2006-2008, back before sustainability was a buzzword when repurposing was in its infancy....at least in fashion.

Early on I took inspiration from the work of Christian LaCroix, Jean Paul Gaultier and Vivienne Westwood. I was drawn to their beautiful and ultra feminine designs.  I began searching thrift stores and flea markets for vintage corsetry and underpinnings to spark my creativity and reimagine them into pretty tops and dresses.
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The very first piece I designed was this top created from a vintage 1940s cotton corset, a vintage hankie and a few buttons and ribbons.  Take a look at all of those gorgeous buttons running down the side. I'm pleased that I held onto this piece. It was featured in Belle Armoire magazine.

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The piece below was upcycled from a Victorian era jacket that was way too small for anyone to fit into. I opened up the back adding a vintage lace panel. Unfortunately I don't have a photo of the back. Again...those buttons!


I redesigned this plain, simple corset using cuttings from a burlap coffee bag and various vintage ribbons and trims.



Here's a fun project where I repurposed vintage zippers, adding them to an existing black cotton corset.



My fascination with vintage underpinnings continued with more upcycled corsetry and vintage silk textiles...


This is the second dress I designed and it was featured on the cover of Belle Armoire magazine. (I still have this one.)





The dress below had a lovely tulle underskirt and was pieced from several Victorian era garments that were in disrepair. One of my dear friends owns it.



This dress was also featured in Belle Armoire and was always one of my favorites with the mix of embroideries, ruffles and lace. Another one that got away and I wish I still had. 





Deeply into my Vivienne Westwood period, the textiles got darker and the shapes more abstract. 😊 The next was a two piece garment - the skirt made up in a menswear inspired textile paired with a silk layered and ruffled top.



This was the first time I used upcycled leather in the mix of leather, and brocade. 



The final piece is a blanket coat where I mixed a wrap around skirt with cashmere pieces and leather remnants.


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I don't own many of these garments- most went to what I hope are still happy customers. It's always fun to revisit the early work. 

Thank you for coming to my retrospective.  

Tuesday, June 11, 2019

Summer 2019 Collection

It's almost that time again! I've been working on a collection of casual and chic separates for weekend getaways, entertaining at home or just plain wearing to feel good about yourself! I've been inspired by the beach pajamas of the 1930s. In that era they wore colorful, flowy ensembles paired with sandals and a straw hat. Here are some photos from that time frame.

I'll be hosting a trunk show and sale at my home in Redlands on Wednesday, June 19 from 11-4. Email me at lmsandstedt@gmail.com for more information or to book a private showing. I've also reopened my Etsy store and you can see my latest work from this link:  Lorimarsha on Etsy








Even though your travel plans may not include the Cote D'Azur, there's no reason not to be comfortable and chic-- even at home!

I sourced vintage cold rayon from the 1940s to create designs having that colorful, breezy aesthetic. Some come in sets and others are separates. This is the first time that I've made pants, so it's always fun to try something new. I also incorporated self-made interfacing and piping to add some pop.










Another piece of the collection are the pants I designed from a mix of vintage textiles. I especially love them to be colorful and somewhat quirky. They are drawstring waist to fit a variety of sizes. Here's me wearing my own pair.





With temps hitting near 100 degrees today, there's nothing better than dressing cool, comfortable and chic. 

Follow me on Instagram @lorimarsha to see my current projects and inspirations. Have a great summer, friends!

Monday, December 10, 2018

Falling in love with Matisse


While I've always loved impressionist painting, I'd never really spent a lot of time looking at Matisse. I guess I thought of him more in terms of his cut outs than as a painter. Since I started drawing a few years ago, my style has been pretty much detailed line drawings with lots of color. It seemed that whenever I tried to loosen up, I just couldn't.






I started studying Matisse's painting style, especially those of sitting women and open windows.  I began to notice the detail in the garments, the wallpaper, the furniture. Very decorative and quite beautiful.  In fact, in 2005 The New York Metropolitan Museum of Art hosted an exhibit called "Matisse: The Fabric of Dreams His Art and Textiles."

I learned that he came from a family of textile artists. Well that made sense! For generations Matisse's family had been involved in the textile industry in northern France. He had an innate appreciation for textiles and was an avid collector of fabrics, from his early days as a poor art student in Paris to the latter years of his life, when his Nice studio overflowed with exotic costumes and wall hangings. Used traditionally at first, as mere background elements in his compositions, textiles soon became the springboard for his radical experiments with perspective and an art based on decorative patterning and pure harmonies of color and line.* 






I decided to try to copy the style. It's much more flowy and soft...less hard lines as in my own work. I've never been one to copy but I found that copying paintings helped to free me up.  I also enjoyed, in some cases, choosing my own color palette. He helped me see the human body as maybe something I could draw. The hands, feet and facial structure are soft and inviting.

Here are some examples of the Matisse paintings I've copied.








Recently I did a drawing of a new  sun room upstairs in my house and I noticed a bit of a change in my own style. Still plenty of lines and detail but a bit softer in spots.




I had taken a break from drawing so the past few weeks have been a lot of fun exploring it again...with a different perspective.



*From The Met's online description of the exhibit "Matisse: The Fabric of His Art and His Textiles."

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Sneak Peek Red Dirt Art Festival



I'll be participating in the Red Dirt Art Festival in downtown Redlands again this year. I have a lot of new work to show!  I hope you can come out if you're in town. The weather forecast is clear and 72 degrees...a perfect day to be in the beautiful outdoors.

I've been focusing on scarves and have an entirely new collection. I've also designed several new cool weather garments. Maybe we'll finally experience some cool weather soon.







Saturday, January 6, 2018

Women in Clothes Project #3 The Outfit in the Picture


This year I discovered a book titled Women in Clothes by Sheila Heti, Heidi Julavits, Leanne Shapton and 639 others. Totally unlike any other book I've read related to fashion, it was researched and written by a group of women interested in the concept of personal style and what that means. They interviewed over 600 women from all over the world and all walks of life. The interview questions were thought provoking and the responses even more so.  I decided to use the book as an outline to better understand my own relationship to clothes and personal style. Please feel free to join me by answering the question in the comments sections. I'd love to hear from you!


I wore this outfit to my friend Suzie's birthday party where the theme was "Dress Like Suzie." Suzie is a tall and beautiful ex-ballerina. The striped tights were my homage to her. She almost always wears striped tights and lots of flowing layers. The top and skirt are from Anthropologie. Vintage Vera chiffon head scarf and a fun neckpiece that was a gift from a good friend. So it was kind of a masquerade party and kind of a dress up party.  The parameters of the invitation provided a bit freedom in my choices. It was fun.
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