Thursday, October 28, 2010

An LP Bustier! A Bird Cage Skirt! Meet AIS Glitter Gala Design Competition Winner: Peter Czarnecki

The Seattle Goodwill Glitter Gala is just one week away. One of the highlights of the evening is the runway show "The Sounds of Style," where fashion and music take center stage and the clothing and accessories all come from the 2010 Glitter Sale.

The finale of this event will be the winning design from this year's Art Institute of Seattle (AIS) Glitter Gala Design Competition. This year's winner is 24-year-old Las Vegas native and AIS fashion design major, Peter Czarnecki. I asked Peter to tell us about his award-winning dress.

This year's Glitter Sale Design Competition called for a fashion design that used merchandise from Seattle Goodwill to exemplify the Grunge era. Tell us about your winning design.
I designed a dress by fashioning old LPs for the bodice, and I used a plaid duvet cover for the skirt with black and white striped curtains for contrast. I also made a cropped jacket from a black floor-length trench coat and used extra material from the curtains to make short, black and white puffed sleeves.

Wow! This dress sounds amazing. How did you come up with such an innovative design?
I had drawn a dress similar to this one in a beginning sketching class when I first started at AIS. I had made bowls out of records before, so using LPs as a bodice wasn't much of a stretch. I wanted to give Grunge a modern look.

How exactly did you turn the LPs into a bodice?
Trial and error! I heated the records in the oven at 250 or 275 degrees and molded each piece to my model. I had originally planned to glue the LPs together with epoxy glue, but that didn't turn out very well, so I used a candle lighter to puncture a hole in each record, and tied them together with a strip of flannel from the duvet. It turned out even better this way, because the records move with the model.

You did something unusual with the skirt as well, didn't you?
I thought, "I can't have a 'blah" skirt." Bird cages have always inspired me, and I have a vintage bird cage in my room. I decided it would be fun shape for a skirt. So I went to Home Depot and bought wire to make the framework for a short bubble skirt.

How long did it take you to do all this?
The idea came together really quickly, just a day or two. But it took over a month to actually make the dress, in between homework. I had to hand-sew everything.

Did you have any fashion design experience before coming to the AIS?
I had never done anything fashion-related before going to the Art Institute. I was in nursing school before coming here. I quickly realized nursing was not for me. I'd always been artistic, but had never even attempted to draw clothing. And I'd never touched a sewing machine.

And now, what are your plans?
I'll finish school next December. Then I'd like to go to graduate school, especially Central Saint Martins College of Art & Design, an internationally renowned school in London, to see what else is out there.

Want to see Peter Czarnecki's amazing design for yourself? Join us next week, on Thursday, Nov. 4th, 6 pm, at the Sheraton Seattle, for the Glitter Gala!


Anonymous said...

Actually, there were 3 winners. Maybe you should have interviewed the others as well......

Seattle Goodwill said...

Thanks, Anonymous. You are right, there were 3 winners and 3 runner-ups at the Art Institute of Seattle's Glitter Gala Design Competition, and I am remiss in not mentioning them all. In addition to Peter Czarnecki, who took home top honors, second place went to Tiffany McGinnis, third place was awarded to Alex Hancock, and honorable mention went to Sandy Frey, Emily Szarek and Isaiah Whitmore. All six winning designs will be on the runway at the Glitter Gala on November 4th!