Goddess of the Deep Sea
When I saw 'renewal' and 'rebirth' were the subjects for the contest, I thought immediately in the cycle of life. Because life is, in itself, a huge cycle. Animals, weather, time... and of course, water. All is included into this infinite circle.
Visions of the Flora and the spring makes me think of another Botticelli painting, The Birth of Venus, and how she emerges from the sea, the same sea that brings me scenes of the cycle of water as it evaporates to later rain on the river, which will bring it back to the sea.
I used the myth of Aphrodite arising from the sea to inspire my design. Sea is the starting and ending in the cycle of water, and the cradle of many species. With this in mind, I thought about re-use old clothes, T-shirts dyed with natural products to give them a bluish tone that reminds of the sea, it all mixed with memories of my grandfather, a fisherman. I utilized the same fishing nets that he used to use, along with some shells that we found together.
A skirt made from plastics from the waste of my family business completes the look, closing a familiar circle, as I have put in this design a little bit of each of my closest relatives, thinking of it as a symbol of rebirth and another cycle in life.
I'm self-taught and I create my own patterns with much effort, love and dedication. First of all, in order to achieve this, I modified my overbust pattern making the front heart-shaped, adding a panel for the hips area, and making a greater waist reduction than I used to do.
In this corset I used for the first time the mesh fabric to replace the side panels and combined it with recycled T-shirt fabrics, I tried to dye it using red cabbage but the synthetic composition of the main fabric didn’t absorb the colour. Instead, the other shirt fabrics used for the hips area took some degraded colour.
As the T-shirt fabric is very elastic, I reinforced it with interfacing and used two more layers of canvas for each panel except for the part of mesh. I used it also to make boning channels. The corset has spiral bones and flat steel bones in the back panel. It’s finished with cotton lining and hand finished bias tape binding.
The two hip pieces are made with cut T-shirt strips (in Spain we call it "trapillo"), and I used crochet technique to make shaped hips.
I used a lot of shells and embroidered pearls to decorate the front panel and hips. This needed higher doses of patience than usual!
In this design I used a lot of recycled materials like old T-shirts, fishing net, shells and sea snails collected from the beach, plastics waste from my family business, and ribbon I had from another project. In order to reinforce and finish the corset, I used canvas fabric, interfacing, printed cotton lining, mesh, spring steel bones and flat steel bones with their ends and eyelets.
I want to thank my mom, who is currently sick, for helping me to gather the recycled materials used for this design.
What was it like to compete this year? What would you say to someone who is on the fence about entering next year?
I would recommend you to participate in this contest; for me it has been a good opportunity to improve my skills and challenge myself, and I hope people also now know my brand.