In the Spotlight: Easy Fashion Clothing
I’m pleased to present Jonathan Drews from EasyFashionClothing. Jonathan’s creations are cheery, charming, and beautifully designed. A definite bonus is the care Jonathan takes to fit each creation perfectly. Jonathan, please tell us a little bit about yourself.
I spent most of my adult life working in dreary technical fields (drafting, chemical technician and quality control). It was dullness made god. Then I discovered fashion sewing. You know what it was like? It is as if all my life I was surrounded by particle board furniture and then one day I walked into the Ethan Allen showroom. That was what it was like to discover fashion sewing and garment design.
Do you work full or part-time?
I work part time sewing clothes and other articles.
What do you like to do in your spare time (in addition to crafts)?
I build model planes, when I have time. I give sewing lessons to friends. I also like reading math textbooks. I find mathematics to be an excellent tool for pattern drafting.
When did you first discover handmade creations?
I took my then girlfriend to a big box store to buy her some dresses. The stuff was so bland and so poorly made that I thought to myself that even I can do better than this.
Do you have an art background or design degree? How has your formal training helped you?
No but I was trained by a professional. In one of those fateful encounters, I met Ann, who was a former Sewing Instructor at Parsons, the New School for Design. I took sewing lessons from her, about four times a year for three years. I learned how to sew lined dresses, circle skirts, men’s shirts and mostly knits. I also took elementary draping from her which is a really valuable skill. It's one thing to get sewing instruction. It's quite another to be guided by the sure instincts of a great master. How many people get gifted with an opportunity like that? I also take online classes, through Craftsy, on pattern drafting and couture sewing.
What are your favorite fabrics/materials to work with and why?
I prefer natural fabrics (wool, cotton, linen and silk) to synthetic fabrics. Natural fabrics press better. The secret to making good, well-fitting clothes is to accurately press all your seams before sewing over them. I always meld and bust my seams. Melding is pressing the seam while it is flat to set the new stitching in place. Busting is the subsequent operation of pressing the seam allowances open.
Natural fabrics drape better and wear better. Also, wool cotton and linen are not as flammable as rayon or polyester.
How would you describe your style?
I don’t know if I have a style. I do have very definite goals in mind. When I create a fashion, I want a woman to look elegant and dignified. I was with a buddy one day and we both saw a woman who was very well dressed walk by. His remark was telling. He said “Now that is a woman!” That is exactly what you want to do with fashion design. Inspire awe, admiration and interest in the opposite sex.
Who do you like creating for the most? Kids, women, pets, friends and family?
I sew mostly for women. Women’s clothes have way more fashion elements than men’s clothing. And there are many more interesting fabrics to work with such as Brazil prints, silks (Dupioni, crepe de chine, Shangtung).
Do you find it hard to part with your creations?
No, not at all. I am always moving forward onto a new creation.
Would you like to share any crafting techniques or tips with our readers?
A good way to sew accurate seams is to affix a layer of Post-it notes to the needle plate of your sewing machine. The fabric can bang up against the stack of Post-it notes and be held at a consistent distance
Where are you going next? Future plans?
I hope to do more retro dresses in the future. I also intend to begin making ladies jackets. At first from linen and then wool.
Jonathan, thanks so much for telling us about your work. I look forward to seeing more of your custom-made creations, including the retro dresses and men’s shirts!