This pant is about the neatest combo of a woven pant and a knit pant. It is NOT a pair of leggings, therefore you can actually wear it like a pant - like to the office or to work or to church. It's such a versatile pant you won't believe it. I like it cause it looks like a business pant, and yet feels like a yoga pant. The other thing that's neat about this pant, is that in the woven pant you must have enough ease in the rear to allow you to sit down, which may look baggy. However in the ponte pant, you don't have to have this ease and it will look fabulous on you. This is made with Ponte, scuba knit or double knit fabric, so you will need to purchase that either online or have some in your stash. Cost is $60 and you can sign up for the class at Bernina of OKC.http://clairekennedydesign.com/classinfo/SupplyListforPontePant.pdf
Bring your machine, and all the things you like to sew with (seam ripper - yep, you'll need one), pics, nippers, scissors thread. If you don't want to bring your machine, let Bernina of Oklahoma City know and they will set one up for you. My favorite pattern for this pant is the Barb Pant on StyleArc?s Etsy site. Click here to download that pattern. NOTE: the pattern comes in a three-size bundle, so be sure and get the right sizes for you. Measure around your hip and that's the size you want to get. Click here for the size chart (note: the inches size chart is in the middle of the page - scroll down). You can purchase Robert Kaufman Arietta Ponte from Bernina of Oklahoma City which is DREAMY.
Claire is from Oklahoma City. She is a life-long resident of Oklahoma having been raised in a small town in NE Oklahoma, Pawhuska. She is fortunate enough to have traveled and has had a love of fashion since her first Barbie doll, where most designers start. She has clients mostly in the Southern Plains as well as others parts of the country.
Claire started sewing for her Barbie, and after introductory sewing classes, mostly concentrating on bibs, towels and other projects, became bored with the field and left it for almost 20 years. She met Erma Johnson Roberts in the late 1970's who shared her love and expertise and they began a life-long love of designing and execution of those designs.
The most rewarding and challenging part of what Claire learned was fitting. She felt this was the key to looking good in just about any style in just about any body. "All I have to do is 'listen to the fabric.' It tells me where to take in and where to let out. There are an infinite number of body types, and each body became a new challenge....a puzzle to figure out. I could care less whether the body was politically correct thin or thick. This was all a matter of putting together 2-dimensional pieces so that they fit a 3-dimensional shape! It's a puzzle!"
Claire's fitting techniques naturally had another benefit, other than working through the puzzle of fitting. "All my clients began to realize that they could fit into pants, ball gowns, short/long dresses, thin skirts, full skirts - just about anything they wanted. Frequently I heard how comfortable they were. I was always astonished at this, because this is what I was all about -- fitting to the body. But I found I was fitting to the mind as well. When several of my clients had certain phobias or sensitive areas of their body, I would fit around those sensitive areas, as well as the physical fitting of the body. " Claire's reputation was cemented as not only delivering a garment that was pretty, appropriate and creative, but also that felt as good as it looked. Her clients are not only pleased, but amazed at the comfort and enjoyment of the designs that Claire regularly delivered to her clients.
Claire starts with a muslin. Muslin is a cotton, unbleached fabric. The muslin is fitted then pulled apart and a final pattern is made from the muslin. There is a fitting in the fashion fabric as it is often a different body and needs fine tuning. Usually a hem and some small detail work will finish the gown. This process normally takes about 6 weeks, but has done dresses in shorter time.
"My greatest challenge is not the design, or what I can do, it is the fabric. This is even more evident by the recent announcements from Hancock's and Wal-Mart to close some of their stores and Wal-Mart to close its fabric departments. Custom dressmaking is a fine art that has for the past decades been on the decline. The two traditional best sources are Los Angeles and New York, supported by the entertainment industry - Los Angeles by the movies, and New York by theater, but also as it is the national center of fashion. But sewing is making a comeback and is making a resurgence in popularity. Here's a link from a recent article in Time Magazine about the rise in interest in sewing. I'm looking forward to stores opening up outside the NY/LA area!
"I see so many gorgeous fabrics on my travels that it is hard to communicate their beauty to my clients. I suppose I do this with my enthusiasm. Some fabrics leave me speechless, and I treasure my trips to find fine fabrics. It is truly 'eye-candy' for me. I've been lucky enough to have traveled to Europe, Canada, Japan and Hong Kong to establish contacts throughout the world. "