Tuesday, August 11, 2009

A Jumpsuit Addiction with artist/ designer Christie Frields

Welcome to our first installment of Every Little Counts' feature articles and interviews, where we shine a light on some people and places that we think influence the Every Little Counts lifestyle. For this inaugural interview, we chose Christie Frields. Christie is an LA-based artist and designer who I've gotten known to know over the last couple of years. A while back, we started talking about how much we love jumpsuits, and she let on that she collects them. I thought that would be a perfect fit for our blog, so a couple weeks ago she invited us to her amazing home set in Mt. Washington to photograph and talk about a few of her favorite pieces.

photographs by adam, of course :-)

How long have you been collecting jumpsuits?
This collection sort of happened by accident, thrifting here and there I would discover a piece I liked for certain qualities, the fabric, fabrication or fit would delight me, even more so when the piece was really affordable. Plus I don't really wear dresses so much, unless they are super formal or outrageous. So in a way, the jumpsuits solve a problem of what to wear, the jumpsuits are easy.

Why do you love them so much?
Because they are unusual constructions, a good one is by necessity interesting!

Do you have a favorite backstory? Favorite piece?
I love the lavender vintage floral piece. It is made entirely by hand in perfect tiny careful stitches, the buttonholes are beautiful. It's from the 30' or 40's, I got it at Flounce in Echo Park and it's one of the most feminine things in my closet. They called it a playsuit!
Tell us about the four we photographed - where did you buy them? For how much? When?
Of this collection, the first one I acquired is the cotton turquoise number. I found it at a small thrift store on York Blvd, across the street from my old studio. It was $3. I have shopped there often, Nene's on York between Ave 56 & Ave 57. The history of the building is bittersweet, a much longer story of York Blvd, but the store owners are a lovely couple and everything in the shop is immaculate, some new dead stock as well as odd pieces. For years I shopped there before going to Burning Man, things were soooo inexpensive that my friends and I would gather our finds from there, set up 2 sewing machines and turn out some pretty fantastic costumes for the desert.

The pink harem number came from Squaresville, 2 summers ago, I think it was $14. Very I Dream of Genie, right?

The lavender floral number from Flounce, I don't remember the price but it was a great deal, probably $20.

The black silk jumper is new, I got it at Scout in 2006, just before going to Berlin and I am afraid to remember the price, too much I am sure. It is by Society for Rational Dress...I remember riding everywhere Berlin on a bike in that suit.

You make amazing jewelry- tell us about it. What were your inspirations? Where can we find it?
Thank you! I've been making the jewelry since 2005. It began as a companion to my art practice in an effort to come up with some sore of trading beads. The weaving technique has been around for thousands of years but I got very excited by Ani Albers' Bauhaus adaptation which I had seen in an exhibition of her and her husband Josef Albers work at the Cooper Hewitt in NYC in 2004. You can find my jewelry at A + R in Venice and Silverlake and online.

Favorite costume design in a film?
Tarkovsky's Solaris. And I love Joni Mitchell's everything in the concert film Shadow and Light recorded in 1979.
What are you listening to right now?
Orchestra Baobab, Steely Dan's Aja, Ironhorse does Modest Mouse, The Abyssinians, James Brown...

Any secret shopping haunts?
Out of the Closet! I've been collecting brass goblets and silk scarves. And Toros Pottery in Eagle Rock for beautiful covered jars and vases...

For more on Christie's work, visit her website.


Jennifer said...

I LOVE!!!!
Christie is awesome. What a great idea Amy! Nice photos Mr. Black!

elsiee said...

It takes great confidence and style to pull of jumpers - Christie appears to have an abundance of both - lovely and interesting feature, so fun!

Every Little Counts said...

The day after we shot these photos, I think I spent a good 8 hrs. obsessively searching for jumpsuits/ rompers/ playsuits...all the names and variations of. I am still searching.

Jennifer said...

Christie (and you Amy) can totally pull off the jumpsuit look. Alas, it is not for me. I'm basically in jeans & a tee or a dress.

Mociun has some on sale right now, and Album di Famiglia makes some beautiful ones.

I admire how adventurous Christie is.
I'm curious to see who you feature next!

Jennifer said...

Jumpsuits Galore:


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