First off, I’d like to apologize for there being no post yesterday. My allergies were out of control and I could barely hold my head up, let alone spend all day at the computer….so, I had to take a sick day. I’m better today, although I don’t have much of a voice. Damn Mother Nature for trying to kill me with pollen!
Anyway, I’m sure you are way more interested in who I am sharing for this week’s Wednesday Indie Artist Fixx….and it’s d a g g and s t a c e y. Karen Dagg and Stacey Paterson are the founders and designers behind the line, which is based in Toronto. The pair set out to make feminine, well-crafted clothing using sustainable practices and inspired by traditional bespoke tailoring back in 2001…and they’ve been at it ever since. Karen and Stacy’s desire is to make clothing that will women will wear, treasure and which will become irreplaceable.
Learn more about the designs, the designers behind the clothing and the new fall 2011 collection in my interview below with Stacy of d a g g and s t a c e y.
Tell us a little about yourselves as well as your biz.
We started d a g g and s t a c e y 10 years ago this October. Karen and I met while working at a vintage store in Toronto. We were designing one off pieces for the store, upcycling clothing into new things. We had only being working together for a few months when we started our own line. We both had recently finished university and were ready to start something new. Sometimes, things just fall into place. We knew that, so we just jumped in with both feet.
How would you all describe your point of view for your designs, both generally as well as for this latest collection.
We are both very concerned with the more tactile side of design. Our collections are generally centered around the feel and mood that we want them to give when you see it, touch it and of course wear our designs. We like to mix and match ideas. So casual with refined, boxy and loose with skinny and slight, masculine with feminine.
Our latest collection for Fall 2011 marks our ten year anniversary. The collection is rooted in what we love, and how we love to wear clothes. As daughters of English families we looked to all things British: including, it’s most famous odd couple, Charles and Di; it’s rich tailoring history; and a bit of English riding thrown in for good measure. AW11 also celebrates opposites, another preoccupation of ours. Pairing unexpected proportions together, mixing and matching day and night, high and low, with prints and textures. This unmatchy-matchy look is a salute to what the brand was built on.
Share some of your inspirations, both in life and for your designs.
I’ve always been inspired by the world around me. I get a lot from my travels in the city and out. I like to take things is as they come, so whether I’m at an antique market, or just enjoying my walk to the studio in the morning, I’m always making mental notes of the people, places and things that spark my interest. Music, art, and interior design are everyday inspirations.
Karen has always been inspired by nature and things from the past. She like to delve into a subject or time period and research all the nuances of an idea. If she could do all that from the comfort of a park bench on a sunny afternoon or while enjoying a hike through the woods, that would be perfect.
Who are YOUR favorite clothing designers?
I really like Rachel Comey—the clothes, the shoes, the style its all great. Karen has always been into Japanese design. She is always inspired by the innovation and styling of it.
What are 3 things you are crushing on from other indie designers/crafters/makers?
Thats a tough one. There are so many. Here is a short list.
Karen – Moonrox Jewelery, love it all. Widhagen Hats are a Toronto based hat designer. The make lovely things to keep you head warm. Kid Icarus is another amazing Toronto shop. They make and sell hand-printed and letterpress stationary. They also have a great collection of limited run prints from many artists.
What’s your creative process like?
We usually start with fabrics and colours. So many ideas can come from seeing and touching new fabrics for the upcoming seasons. The same goes for colours. This of course sparks the theme or inspiration for the collection and off we go. We like to sketch everything out but it always changes once we start to make our patterns and muslins. Sometimes, things just work better on paper than they do on the body. We actually make our patterns and samples in house at our studio, which is not always the case for other designers. Karen and I are really into the process of pattern drafting and actually drafting them ourselves. It gives you a real sense of how a garment is made.
What’s better? Coffee or tea? Cats or dogs? Day or night? Vanilla or chocolate? Summer or winter? Heels or flats? Rain or shine?
Stacey – Coffee in the morning and tea in the afternoon, preferably with a scone. Cats. Vanilla. Winter. Heels, but I’m always looking for a good pair of flats, and there is nothing like a sunshower.
Karen – Tea with milk and a spot of honey. Dogs. Chocolate. Summer. Flats, preferably a nice pair of leather flip flops. Shine, the sunnier the better.
What mags and blogs do you like to keep up with?
We like to check in with the Drifter and the Gypsy, Design Sponge, Bookshelf Porn, The Sartorialist, Refinery 29, Etsyluv and Daydream Lily just to name a few. We often will get Lula magazine for the studio, but we really don’t get many magazines anymore.
What’s new or in the works for Dagg and Stacey?
We’ve just finished our Spring 2012 collection so we are really excited to start showing it. We’ll also be spending some time celebrating our ten year anniversary this October!