Wednesday, April 15, 2009

SUMMER DIY ] Swimwear from leftover things


It almost looks like paper in the photograph but it's really cool on the skin and very comfortable. I grew up surrounded by Singer sewing machines, and while I didn't learn how to make a dress, I learned how to make shorts. It's the simplest thing. I was designing my own shorts since high school, and would ask my mother to cut them for me, and she would ask one of her mananahis to sew them. One summer, without nothing exciting to do, I made my first pair. Cut it myself, and put the pieces together. It was cotton fabric and was of a green and black print. It was a simple gartered pambahay shorts without pockets.

In 1999, inspired by the return of the boxy swimwear, led by Gucci's buckled pieces, I made my first swim trunks, from leftover teflon fabric (it was the era of Helmut Lang and the techno material, and I had already made tapered pants out of them) in beige. It was the perfect fabric, I thought. It stretches and its waterproof. I had my mom cut it, but I knew it was pretty easy. Four pieces of squares, lay them on top of each other and cut a J-shape on one corner for the crotch. Connect everything together, take a one-inch-thick garter in your measurement and put it inside the waistband. Since I didn't have a silver buckle, I used a snap one usually finds in the straps of knapsacks.

I thought the idea was still in tune with that time's athletic influences (Prada, Michael Kors, etc). It was short enough for my short legs, and understated enough not to catch too much attention. Although, of course, it did. It was the chicest thing on the beach (years before chic became a regular in my vocabulary), especially when worn with a gleaming tan, next to a sweaty glass of Tanqueray tonic, under a striped canvas umbrella stand.

1 comment:

  1. pu--a , magaling ka pa sa akin, e nag-clothing tech ako!