The Holiday Trunk Show is quickly approaching and I’m so excited, if you can’t tell. I’ve been really busy tidying up the shop and stocking up the shelves with new books and supplies. Handmade Nation, The Gentle Art of Domesticity, Seams to Me, Creepy Cute Crochet and Zakka Sewing arrived a few hours ago. I’m looking forward to spending some time perusing them for new project ideas when I’ve got a few minutes to spare. the workroom will be bursting at the seams with all kinds of crafty goodness this weekend!
I had the opportunity to spend some time with Davis Khounnoraj last week when he dropped by to ‘sew by the hour’ and work on his tea towels. It’s really awesome to see the process behind someone’s work, even if it is just the ‘production’ part. lines by: davis. will be selling amazing screen-printed pouchettes, tea towels, hand bags and greeting cards at the trunk show on Sunday. Just another trunk that will be impossible for me to resist!
Are you self-taught? Did you take something creative in school?
Davis : I would consider myself self-taught because I never went to post secondary school for any kind of formal design training. I have been experimenting since I was a teenager with clothing and deconstructing things to see how they were put together. I have always been obsessed with fashion. My dad bought me my first sewing machine when I was 17. I begged and pleaded for it. He didn’t think anything of it, but I remember getting it and being really happy. I think in his mind, he thought I would use it for alterations and hemming. I soon began experimenting with clothing and made bags for fun. I loved being hands on and trying to sew because it felt very expressive and free to do my own thing.
In school I took art and did anything that had to do with art, so I was pretty creative in different mediums. I remember in 8th grade home economics there was a cooking and sewing part of the class and in the sewing part we had to sew these stuffed animals from a pattern. I think I was the only guy in my class who got a high mark. It was annoying because all the guys in my class would make me help them finish their sewing projects. They didn’t even know how to thread a needle.
Tell me about your process. How do you come up with your designs?
Davis : I normally sketch out my designs in my book and then if I really like the design I will draw out a pattern for it as close to the original drawing. I come up with my designs in different ways. If I see a shape that I like, I try to picture it in bag form and go from there. If there is something specific that I want to make, I might spend hours trying to figure it out by making samples and rearranging pieces of fabric until I like what I see.
What has been inspiring you these days?
Davis : Music has been inspiring me a lot. I need to listen to music when I sew because it gets me in the vibe of things. Lately it’s been music and fashion. It sounds very cliche but they go hand in hand and I couldn’t live without either of them. Musically, I’ve been into the Black Kids and in fashion I’ve been loving the new Balcenciaga Spring 09 show and Lanvin’s Spring 09 show. The Lanvin dresses are so effortlessly worn and I’m digging the pastels, shapes and vibe at the Balenciaga show.
Is there a craft or medium that you’ve always wanted to try that you haven’t yet?
Davis : I think I would like to crochet, I’ve knitted in the past but I would love to try crochet.
What’s your favourite guilty pleasure?
Davis : Going on Perez Hilton.com is my guilty pleasure. It’s like second nature after facebooking I think.
What’s at the top of your holiday wish list this year?
Davis : I think a laptop computer is on my wish list! We’ll see.
Is there anything else you’d like to say about your work?
Davis : lines by: davis. was probably an idea in book that happened a few years ago. I never thought doing what you love and sharing it with others would ever be a possibility. I still to this day thank every girl and guy who has bought or appreciated my work. I hope to continue and grow with my work as it evolves every day.