What do you do with your old quilts and tablecloths? I typically give mine to pets so they can lounge in luxury or to my kids to use as covers for their craft tables, makeshift construction materials for forts and tents, or simply tuck them aside for use as drop cloths when painting, picnic blankets, beach blankets, etc.
Fashion designer Emily Bode apparently does something else with such textiles. She turns them into straight-off-the-runway, hot-ticket items that people in New York are so crazed about, there’s a waiting list to buy them. Bode told reporters she got the idea for her newest seasonal line of clothing after rummaging through her uncle’s attic in southern France.
In a time when most fashion gurus are in a mad race toward the future, Bode has come to the runway with countercultural flare, drawing people’s attention back in time by using fabrics that evoke a sense of nostalgia. Some say the quilt/tablecloth line is stamping Bode’s mark on the world of fashion.
Collecting antiques seems to be a hobby that runs in Bode’s family. Those who know her would likely not be surprised she too, has chosen vintage items to create her brand. In this recent story featured in GQ, she said that she sees herself as a rescuer of vintage history.
I can see one of my daughters loving this idea. She’s a 13-year-old who happens to be the craft queen of our home. Give that child a random bunch of obscure strips of fabric, some items found around the house or outdoors and a little bit of glitter and you’re likely to open an exquisitely lovely gift, made just for you, on your next birthday. That’s how she rolls. In fact, I have suggested that she get on the entrepreneurial bandwagon and open her own craft boutique. Perhaps she’s the Emily Bode of the future generation!
With regard to Bode’s clothing line — here’s the kicker: All the quilt-y goodness, fluffy textures, flowy tablecloth trousers and floral print fabrics in her designs are targeted at a male audience.
It’s men’s workwear! This brings home a point about the fashion industry to me, and that is that it’s truly a world of its own. What happens on New York runways may trickle into mainstream living in certain cities, suburbs or even rural corners of the nation, but I’m fairly certain if I took samples of quilt-ware and tablecloth trousers around to the men in my community to sell a new line of workwear, I would not get many sales. I can only imagine the looks and comments I might get from my own husband and sons if I suggested they start wearing quilt coats and table linen pants.
That said, I suppose Emily Bode doesn’t have to worry about such things, as she appears to have chosen the right location at the right time to forge her way to major fashion success.
Writer Bio: Judy Dudich
Judy Dudich resides in the beautiful woods of Pennsylvania, where 24 acres of land and a home-office provide the perfect setting for her children’s home-education and her own homesteading and business ventures. Life is full of blessings (and challenges!) for Judy, as a wife, mother of 10 and Grammy to six. She is a published author, whose book, “I Surrender/A Study Guide for Women” continues to encourage and support others in Christian family lifestyles throughout the world. Judy has also previously worked in the online speaking circuit. Her passion for permaculture, re-purposing, foraging and organic gardening fills her days with learning and adventure that she loves to share.