“The mirror reflects all objects without being sullied.” – Confucius
Such is the intent of the elaborate embroideries in our most recent Collection. By mirroring each delicate design, they become more substantial, all while ensuring the garment’s femininity.
Our design team has long had a love affair with vintage embroideries—the soft and lacy feel of embroidered tea towels and the fine filigree of flowers in an English garden. This technique allows them to expand upon that inspiration in a way that suits Alabama Chanin’s style.
The floral inspiration began with the work of botanist Anna Atkins (more on her later) who used cyanotype photogenic drawings of her specimens. The technique produced delicate blue images—ghostly outlines of detailed botanical samples. Our design and production teams, moved by the intricacies and gracefulness of each image, used those blue and white representations as a jumping-off point for our original embroideries—to be mirrored in placement on our garments.
We have combined these vintage-style images with Swans Island organic merino wool yarns, A Verb for Keeping Warm’s natural dyed fine wools, and chenille piping to complete each embroidery. The effect is delicate, yet strong and significant. The mirroring design strengthens the effect. It is a play of significant and gentle features entwined.
The embroideries are completed by our artisans whose talent we showcase through our designs. For readers who are new to our Journal, or unfamiliar with our business model, our method of production provides a variety of projects to local seamstresses (our artisans) who work as Independent Contractors who run their own businesses and are in charge of their own lives.
The patterns for the styles are cut and stenciled in our studio and prepared for embroideries and – in most cases – the construction of the garments. These embroideries are then executed by these independent contractors– living within about an hour and a half of our studio. Since our inception, it has been an important mission of ours to bring as much economic development as possible into our community and to our independent contractors. This open work/open source philosophy is a goal that we strive to achieve every day. By purchasing a hand-sewn garment, you are not only supporting our business but supporting the independent contractors who make this work possible.
Explore all of the embroideries and designs in the Collection here. If you have questions about the styles you see in our Collection, our Personal Stylist is here to offer guidance on fit, design details, and styling as well as offer insight into your preferences and lifestyle needs and support you in your decision-making process.
You can contact our Personal Stylist Monday – Friday from 8:30am – 4:30pm CST. Call our Customer Service team and ask for Betsy at 256-760-1090 or by email firstname.lastname@example.org.