Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Sequin Progress - Part C

Hey there friends!  So I finished the black sequin portions on the cuff I was working on!  So that means I am over 50% done with one half of my cuffs!  I love progress!

Now all I have left is to do is fill in the blank areas with my deep purple sequins.... thing are HAPPENING!!!!!  My costume is going to be super Bob Mack-a-licious AND amazbling!  Come on Mr. Mackie.  How can you say "no" to this level of sequinny goodness?

- Philip Estrada

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Prom Gown Illustration

This is the sketch for my niece's senior prom gown.  The direction she gave me when I was considering designing the gown was "I want to look like Marilyn."  That was it... there would be no arguments the gown would come from me, and be my graduation present to her. 

The gown is strapless and made from Pewter colored silk satin.  The body of the gown has a black silk chiffon overlay to give it a nice subtle color change.  The kicker is that the bodice is encrusted with various sized rhinestones that spray down the skirt peeking out from under the drape.

My niece said loved the gown and had a wonderful night.  More pictures to come.

This is another example of my working directly with a customer on a special occasion gown.  I enjoy working closely with people who have an interest in custom clothing and it is very rewarding.  I love presenting the ideas that I am excited about and in turn having them light up in the same way.  It is also wonderful to have the include client during the process.  I sent my niece quick photos of the progress and her excitement continued to build as the gown took shape.   Working this way feels as though you are inviting someone into the creative process even though they may not be artistically inclined.  On some level it's a form of teaching, opening their eyes to the act of creation. 

My ease of working with clients would be very valuable to the Mackie team since he has so many custom clients.  I could assist on projects with Bob Mackie that requires extra attention or a second set of hands.  I could be on hand to handle clients when Mr. Mackie is out of town or predisposed with larger scale projects.  I would be the one to handle the details and day to day dealings while keeping Bob abreast of developments and progress.  I would actively spearhead projects with new clients and they will be brought in to help grow the business and broaden Bob Mackie's presence. 

These are a few reasons of why I would be a perfect fit for the Bob Mackie team.  All that I need now is a start date.

-Philip Estrada

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Mackie Shirt

I finished my latest Mackie t-shirt.  I paired the hot pink t-shirt with a shiny black cup sequin.  It looks really awesome!  The black sequins sparkle like crazy.   I got the shirt from American Apparel and it is a 50/50 cotton poly blend so it is light weight and is super soft.  I LOVE IT!

I think it would be wonderful if Bob Mackie starting making these shirts and selling them directly from his website.  Having his iconic signature emblazoned across the front of a casual t-shirt is a great juxtaposition.

How much would you pay to own a Mackie piece you could wear everyday?

-Philip Estrada

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Reason #5 Bob Mackie Should Hire Me

Reason #5 - Learning

Just like little Ralph Wiggum I too have been learning.  I feel another reason Mister Mackie would benefit from hiring me is because I constantly take it upon myself to soak up information and learn skills. 

I have always have been proud of my self discipline to learn as much as I can and further my knowledge on the talents I possess.  I've always been the kind of person that goes out of their way to research information that improves my abilities.  I do this not only for my computer based skills, but I also love learning new things in sewing and garment construction.

Case in point, in college I took a machine knitting course.  It was a pretty basic class, but I loved the concepts.  After I finished the class I purchased two different gauge knitting machines with ribbing machine attachments.  We didn't learn the ribber in class but it came with a manual so I figured it out.  I pride myself on experimentation.  I love reading the information in a book while sitting at the machine so I'm able to try out the theory right then and there.  I feel that I have taken in a ton of information on how to use these machines and still there is more they can do!

In addition to the machine knitting I taught myself the Tambour technique of embellishing.  I have been hand embellishing and have constantly thought that there has to be a faster way.  After seeing videos of The House of Lesage on YouTube I realized that the hook tool was the key.  So I researched where to buy the tool and how the technique was done.  I had to make a makeshift frame to suit my apartment and now I'm sequining the hell out of everything!

Now these are only two examples of my readiness to pick up and learn new skills.  I've always found that learning and problem solving go hand in hand.  I've asked myself "I wonder how they do that?" countless times.  Each time I ask that, I inevitably research and find the answer no matter how long it takes.  The wonderful thing about these new skills is that they are not shortcuts.  Sometimes they end up taking more time to execute but my work looks so much more elevated and professional.  I have realized that the more mature I get and the more I learn the better I become as a designer.  I have been able to continually raise the bar on myself because I find ways to reach further than I thought I could.

My enthusiasm to learn new things would definitely be an asset to Team Bob Mackie.  I could be his go-to guy for anything that needs innovation.  If I don't know how to accomplish it I will figure it out.  My answer for any question or problem that may arise will always be "I'M ON IT!"

- Philip Estrada

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Sequin Progress - Part Deux

Just a quick update on the sequining progress.  This is the shape of the cuff on my jacket for Halloween.

The finished outlined edge of the cuff.  Note the use of the slightly contrasted bugle beads.  The organza I am sequining on is stretched across my make shift Tambour frame.

Beginning to fill the cuff body with an undulating pattern.

Close up of the hand work.
- Philip Estrada

Thursday, June 9, 2011

The Lost Art of Jubilee!

Jubilee! at Bally's in Las Vegas is coming up on 30 years of dazzling audiences with showgirls dripping with rhinestones and feathers.  This show is amazing and a must see for everyone visiting Sin City. 

In honor of their 30 years I wanted to share with you a Bob Mackie sketch for the show.

This was a proposed sketch for the Jubilee! that didn't end up getting used for the show.  It was auctioned at Christie's in 2005.

I love this idea because it's 2 looks in one and there is a big show stopping reveal.  The show should consider using this if they ever want to switch up the costumes.  Could you imagine her?!  Strutting slowly down the stairs during the finale with the other ladies dressed in red.  The cymbals crash and she drops the top wowing the audience with even more feathers, sequins and rhinestones!

I was thinking about how much fun it would be to make something this epic.  I love her "bowl" of ostrich plumes.  I already have a statuesque friend who meets the showgirl height requirement.  She's been studying the Jubilee! promo videos so she's ready to go at a moments notice!

- Philip Estrada

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Sequin Progress

I started sequining the cuffs to my jacket for Halloween.
They are going to be encrusted with cup sequins in a fishscale pattern and accented with bugle beads.

This is one pack of sequins... I may have to buy them by the pound

- Philip Estrada

Monday, June 6, 2011

I Know It's Early

I realize Halloween is a few months away but lets face it, time gets away from us very easily!   Therefore in order to outdo my costume from last year I've already done some strategizing and sketching.  

The plan this year is to do an ensemble costume of the cast of "The Wizard of Oz."  Seems simple enough but here is the twist!  Each character's gender will be switched and the costumes will be redesigned and pushed to the limit!  

I shall be a male version of the Wicked Witch of the West!  I designed a 1920s cutaway tuxedo jacket with tails extended to the floor.  The sleeves and front panels would be accented by shiny emerald lurex embroidery in vine motifs (I can do some pretty cool stitches on my sewing machine).  Underneath would be an emerald encrusted double breasted vest.  The cravat would be super frilly and be made of a black iridescent fabric with green undertones.  I would sew sequins with beads spaced evenly on the fabric.  The whole thing would be topped off by a black top hat with an emerald sash.  The whole look will come together with my broom that I will be carrying.  That was the original plan, but then something happened...

... The Jubilee Backstage Tour.  After seeing all those beautiful Bob Mackie costumes inches from my face I had an epiphany.  I must, at all cost even death, push my designs to the level of artwork like the costumes of Jubilee.  That experience has been one of the most inspiring things I ever had the benefit of experiencing so intimately. 

The original concept of the costume is remaining much the same, but now the embellishment will be pushed beyond anything I have attempted thus far.  The cuffs are now going to be encrusted in bugle beads and black cup sequins.  The cuffs will extend past the sleeve and emerald and raven color feathers will be inserted into the ends to reference the wings of the Wicked Witch's flying monkies.  The vest will still be encrusted in emeralds, which I'm greatly looking forward to.  The embroidery on the jacket will now be accented with raven black seed beads and wonderful brunished green sequins I found.  They have a matt oil slick quality to them with flecks of yellow and black in them.  I plan on sprinkling the sequins and beads along the embroidery randomly to give it an organic and etherial feeling.  The hat will now have a mass of plumage pouring from it in coordinating emerald and raven colors.  Luckily I found a trim store in the fashion district that has an amazing selection and variety of feathers and I've already begun stocking up.

I think this is going to be a wonderful Mackie-esque Halloween.  I hope you enjoy my sketches, and I will be sure to post many updates of my progress!

-Philip Estrada

Friday, June 3, 2011

Cher Sends Her Love

Happy Friday friends!  I hope you have wonderful plans for this weekend.  Myself I plan on relaxing and squeezing in as much personal work as possible.  I can't help it!  I find it relaxing!

So today I was browsing the Youtube and found this adorable video.  Bob Mackie's buddies Cher and Carol discuss hosting a variety show and give the various crew teams a shout out.  It was wonderful to see them give Mr. Mackie the first shout out AND by name!  You can really tell that Carol and Cher appreciate his talent and dedication.

Enjoy! And have a wonderful weekend everybody!

- Philip Estrada

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Happy Birthday Marilyn!

Today is the birthday of THE sex symbol of the 20th century.  Marilyn  Monroe was amazing and will never be replaced.  Check out this beautiful print of her by Bob Mackie.  Only 275 were made.  The piece was auctioned off at Christie's in 2005 and went for $777.  10% of the proceeds went to Elton John's AIDS Foundation.

Mr. Mackie is such a talented and generous man.

- Philip Estrada
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