Sunday, December 26, 2010

We made it!!!

These are pictures of the gates that were used to secure the booths at Grand Central. They became very symbolic in our time there. At the end of a long day you would see them being rolled down the hall and it was our sign that the day was almost over. In the morning customers would wait outside the gates for the Holiday Fair to open - so they could come in and shop. They have closed for the last time this year...

Christmas eve was our last night at the Grand Central Fair! After sleeping for about 12 hours last night we went and cleaned out our booth this morning - just hours before the impending blizzard!

While this experience has been a tremendous amount of work - I can't wait to go back! I was so lucky to have immediate feedback from customers from all over the world and see the reaction of little girls as they turned the corner and saw our booth! I also feel so lucky to have spent this time with my Mom. She really came and supported me in this dream and it couldn't have happened without her. Thanks to everyone who said hello and even offered coffee. I think she is eager to return to her quiet life - but loved meeting all the customers! This is Murphy he will be returning to Texas as well - we will miss him!

I am now gearing up for spring! My head is spinning with ideas and I am sending out applications to art shows all over the east coast...might even make an appearance in Texas! Here is one of the spring designs that almost sold out at Grand Central -

Guess what I got for xmas? A new camera!!! This means better pics for the blog - yay! Here is a pic of Jessiegirl, I took this morning....

What an experience this holiday season has been. Thank you again to everyone who visited the booth. We are so appreciative of the support and positive feedback - and it is thrilling to think of all the Jessiegirlclothing packages that went out to fabulous girls everywhere!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

We made it! We are at Grand Central!

Oh my goodness - we are finally here! We set up our booth - which looks freakin gorgeous - Thanks so much Mom! That is her in the pic! If you visit our booth at Grand Central this season you will see her - she is visiting from TX and is cold!! But loves the winter fashions - and is a fabulous salesperson!
We love NYC the people have been wonderful and the response has been so great!
We are meeting people from all over the US and the world - we have the coolest customers. We are sending out a ton of size 2 and 3 dresses so we will be bringing more in after the weekend and our hats and scarves are flying out the door. The best moments are when we see little girls try on the dresses and love them...and sometimes come back for more! It has been a great week - can't wait to see what December in NYC brings...

Saturday, November 6, 2010

One week away...

We will be loading into Grand Central Terminal this time next week...boy are we busy! My mom is in from Texas and we are creating a warehouse in the basement. we have taped out the space on the floor and realized how small seven by nine feet really is. Thankfully my family has been in retail for years and know how to maximize space.
I have been very lucky to have people around me that balance me well. My DH is a number junkie and has taken over the finances, taxes, accounts and spreadsheets of every kind. My mother is an interior designer who understands how to set up a space. I have been fortunate to work with some talented photographers - especially She was the first photographer I worked with and she just has such a beautiful creative vision. I also was lucky enough to find Nely who helps with the sewing and is amazing - I just feel very, very blessed!
This week my emotions range from excitement to terror to a strange calm - and then I start my next to-do list and move forward.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Just showing of some pics...

Gorgeous pics by Jennifer of fortytoesphotography - she is always so creative!

Two weeks from today the Grand Central Holiday Fair begins! I have really poured my heart and soul into this event - it really represents my creative vision - clothing for girls who love life and want to conquer the world! I am very excited and nervous - part of me wants it to start now so I can see how we do and another part of me would like another month to create more. I am hoping that this event is not only a success but leads to even more opportunities...

Our finished basement is no longer a playroom it has become a warehouse for our growing inventory. Fortunately my kids are happy to have their toys in their bedrooms and don't seem to be at all upset - they are great kids - I am really blessed.

I have started to think about things like fireproofing. I have to admit when I started this venture I never realized how many details there are that have nothing to do with designing or sewing - it can be overwhelming. Apparently you have to fireproof everything that is not metal - this includes the wicker baskets, mannequins and wooden heads used in my display. We are taking it all to a company in Brooklyn next week where they will "treat" it and present us with a certificate.

The next two week will be intense as we finish our design plans for the booth and organize, tag, iron and prepare all the inventory...wish me luck!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Packages are arriving!!!

Friday was a big day - it began with the arrival of boxes from a wonderful woman's collective in Thailand who are hand knitting gorgeous sweaters for our booth at Grand Central Terminal! I think they are a perfect compliment to Jessiegirlclothing skirts and ruffles in texture and color.

We are also including these stylish sweater dresses with coconut shell buttons - perfection! Are Kimberly's daughters not adorable -even the horse is charmed!

Our next delivery came not by our wonderful mailman or UPS truck but huge semi-trailer truck, down a ramp, on a dolly - we received our first pallet! My load in crew was at the ready...

...with the help of my DJ's skateboard (thanks Aunt Barbara!) we were able to move it inside - and these are the gift bags we are going to wrap those special items up in!

We are getting closer - as the larger pieces are in place skirt/dress production, deliveries, work schedules - there are other issues to focus on booth design/lighting/photos.
This last six months has been challenging but exciting and I am learning so much about myself! Alot of my presumptions about my life are being challenged and I can't wait to see where this takes us!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

It is already October 12th?

I am a bit of a procrastinator and my big event at Grand Central is the first time I have really made a concerted effort to break that habit...and it's a good thing too! I have found that time is moving so quickly and I go from feeling all is completely under control to considering the possiblity of not sleeping for six weeks.
I met with the merchandise coordinator for the fair this week to discuss booth design and merchandising. The meeting was great - the standards are high and my ideas are on the right track. I am very excited about the booth but it is equal to opening up a store - there are so many details to think about and tasks to complete. I am so lucky to be having help from my fabulous, interior designer mother who is coming from TX to design and run my booth.

Walking thru Grand Central I couldn't help but get caught up in the excitement and energy of the station. As a teenager living in CT I watched my Dad commute into the city. Grand Central was for rushing thru, grabbing a paper and getting to your train - not a place to hang out. It has changed dramatically in the last ten years! There are beautiful shops, markets and restaurants. Tourists come in just to take photos and have coffee. Vanderbilt Hall where the Holiday Fair will take place has been redone with marble floors and chandeliers - gorgeous! I have included some very blurry photos from my visit last week just to give you an idea! So excited! November 15 is not that far away....

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Six weeks and counting...

My life is consumed with the Holiday Fair at Grand Central Terminal. I am thinking fabrics, logos, booth etc... about 90% of the time. I am excited to be returning to NYC where my love for sewing began.

I learned to sew at the New York Shakespeare Festival working in the costume shop when I first arrived in NYC. I was only 20 years old and had worked for two years at a dinner theater in CT as the wardrobe girl and was ready to make the move to NYC with my friend Nina. After one week working in the Macy's purse department at Herald Square, I got a call from Milo - the headmaster of the NYSF costume shop which made costumes for the Public Theater, Shakespeare in Central Park and Broadway Shows. Milo was very old school, well respected and a bit feared in the costume world of New York Theatre. He always looked meticulous and ran a very tight ship and expected excellence from all who worked there. Milo was known to have grand tantrums and arguments when things did not meet his standards. He could also be very generous to those who worked for him and gave me many great opportunities.
The memory of Milo standing at the cutting table inspecting each garment as it left the shop stays with me today. I was very fortunate to learn and work with top costume designers and watch as costumes went from sketches to muslin mock ups to the stage. I learned that all the details are important from color shades to the cut, to the finishing of a garment. Creating beautiful clothes is a process and there are no shortcuts if it is to be well made. As I work to prepare for this show at Grand Central - it is this training that pushes me forward.

I think about it all the time -

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Planning, Working and Inspiration!

I am 6-8 weeks away from load-in at the Grand Central Holiday Fair in NYC and obsess about it nonstop! I am past the planning stage of creating concepts, pieces and ideas. Currently I am in production or as I like to call it the gathering stage (of as DH likes to call it the going broke stage). Our home is slowly becoming a warehouse for all the beautiful items we are bringing with us to the fair. Every night I get to play with my fabric and put combinations together for skirts and dresses. I am adding a fall/winter touch with darker, deeper colors and some play with fabrics. Alot of the skirts and dresses include the same fabric so they can coordinate but not be too matchy-matchy!
I am almost finished with the production of my skirts and will be moving on to dresses in about a week. I started with skirts because they were my first inspiration. They embody the idea that Jessiegirlclothing can be worn dressed up for a party or dressed down for the playground. Clothing for the way real little girls live!
I was so excited last week when we were at the playground and a little girl came running over to the slide and she was wearing one of my Freida skirts! That is pure joy!

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Grand Central Terminal we come!!!!

Finally it is official and I can announce the big news...We are so excited to announce that we will have a booth at the Grand Central Holiday Fair in NYC this year. Entering its 12th year, The Grand Central Holiday Fair is a unique New York City holiday shopping experience. Grand Central Terminal is a must see destination during the holiday season, and the Holiday Fair is the only holiday market in the city to operate indoors!

At Grand Central we will have tons of new Jessiegirl designs including skirts, dresses and ruffles both from the website and exclusive to Grand Central. We will also be debuting a line of gorgeous hand knit sweaters, hats, scarves and legwarmers all original to Jessiegirlclothing!

Come and visit us at Vanderbilt Hall in Grand Central Station Terminal from November 15th to December 24th! Can’t wait!!!

Thanks to Gabi and KimberlyVphotography for the cute pics!!!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Sale! Sale! Sale!

I feel a sale in the air... I am making room for all the fall/winter items we are receiving here. My dining room is packed with skirts and dresses. I have had my last artfair of the summer and will be offering the few items we have left at great prices on the website - Manyof these items were limited edition and only available at the art fairs! .

Come and check it out starting Saturday!

Friday, September 3, 2010

Trumbull Art Fair and more fall pics

I can't believe a year has gone by since my first time at the Trumbull Arts Festival! I will be doing it once again with my neighbor of! So much has happened in a year and I have big news for the holiday season! I am off to create patterns tonite but I will leave you with a few fall pics!

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Fall Photos are arriving...

These photos are by the amazing Kimberly of

This photo by Jennifer Anderson - Wiggins

Iam working on fall-winter samples and sending them out to different photographers. Pics are coming back which I loovvee! I still have some items to finish but this is a first taste!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

That's my baby....

Check out the Sisboom the fabrics!

Monday, August 9, 2010

SONO Arts Festival - WOW

This weekend we were vendors at the SONO Arts Festival right here in CT. I wasn't sure how Jessiegirlclothing would do at this one, but we have always attended and it was close to home. We had so much fun! People were great and Jessiegirlclothing was so well received. I loved watching the little girls come into the booth and pick out their own skirts. The Moms were fabulous also! I told DH we have the coolest Moms and girls as customers. I don't mean to leave out the dads they were great too.

I need to remember a mirror next time - alot of girls tried on their beautiful clothes in the tent and I would love to have a full length mirror for them to see themselves. Alot of ladies asked about adult skirts and I may try that next spring on a small scale.

I am also in SisBoom country and use alot of her fabrics. A few creative ladies noticed and we had our Paganelli love moment - she does craft shows at her home in Wilton that are out of this world!

There was beautiful art at the festival, great music and a puppet parade to top it off! The only issue we had was the wind. We were near tall buildings and felt like we were in a wind tunnel - Thank goodness for the cinder blocks holding the tent down. I spent alot of the day trying to make sure papers, cards, tissue etc. didn't blow away!

One of the advantages of being close to home is seeing alot of old friends. Saturday was our 11th wedding anniversary and about half our wedding party stopped by very cool!

Off to continue working on Velvet Ribbon (my new fall/holiday) line! Preview pics will be coming this stay tune!

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Thinking of Velvet Ribbon in July...

I have been behind in my blogging and I hate that! I am very busy on my fall/winter line and have been trying to stay away from the computer. For two reasons 1. The internet can suck up my time so fast. I get lost in a beautiful world of blogs, facebook, flickr etc.. By the time I look up two hours have passed. During the summer I love to spend time with my kids at the park, pool or even in the I have to use every free moment wisely!
The second is though I love to view other designer's creations it also can make me feel insecure. I start to reconsider certain design elements because I think they might be popular - lots of lace or a certain fabric line. But when ever I start to incorporate these elements it doesn't work - because it is not my aesthetic and I end up throwing the garment away half finished. So I turn the computer off, take a trip to NYC - people watch and visit tiny fabric and ribbon stores in the garment district - and rediscover my own vision. - That's what I have been up to!
Thought it's taken awhile - I think my fall and winter designs are really cool and a little different then everything else. I am finishing up this week and contacting photographers so I can start posting pics! Stay tune!Check out this great statue that was lining the street in the fashion district in NYC - there were a bunch of them all decked out in different outfits - Only in New York!

Friday, July 9, 2010

So many details....

Lincoln Center was fantastic! I got the pleasure of selling my skirts and dresses to families not only in NYC but Israel, England and Argentina. The vendors in neighboring tents were so nice - I was unsure how that would go and they were so inspiring and helpful! The American Girl Doll dresses were such a hit! The highlight of the weekend was when a five year old girl insisted on wearing her jessiegirlclothing skirt that moment! We later saw her parents taking pics of her by the fountain in Lincoln Center -- pure heaven! Best feedback ever - is watching the girls run to the booth and choose the skirts and dresses THEY want to wear! That is when I know this might work!
The only downside was the heat! It was 90 degrees and HUMID. If you live on the east coast you know what I mean - ugh! I drank smoothies, diet coke and water all day. My Mom and best friend helped me in the tent and we had a blast. I hope to return next year. A great opportunity which I will post about later appeared and is keeping me very busy!

My next show will be a bit closer to home. the SONO Arts Festival in Norwalk - I will have alot of the same items and some new patterns!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

OMG! Lincoln Center is less then two weeks away...

Lincoln center is less then two weeks away! I am so excited and overwhelmed with to-do lists! The good news my Mom is coming in to help on Wed. But now I face the battle to keep working on the clothes for the show or clean the house for her visit. Right now I am trying to do both without much success.

I love these photos by Erin Schuler - check out her blog on my links - she is always having a giveaway! These photos are so much fun and her daughter is gorgeous! Told you - I'm totally addicted!

Thursday, June 10, 2010


Busy day was planned for Saturday - two soccer games, Jessie's dance recital, and the June Fair...maybe squeeze in a Costco trip? I figured on two hours to get some work done in the morning if I rushed. Not the brightest idea when cutting fabric with a rotary cutter - ouch - let's leave it at 45 minutes later I ended up in the emergency room getting my finger wrapped and receiving a tetanus shot. Ouch!

I will spare you the details - I will be fine - but a lesson was learned. I think ancient philosophy talks about living in the moment and attaining full consciousness in everything we do. I have always tried to accomplish that when spending time with my children but perhaps life is telling me that I need to slow down. The irony is I am back to cutting and sewing - it is truly a passion for me and Lincoln Center in the 26th! DH and I went to Joanns and apparently they sell "Klutz gloves" and suction ruler handles to prevent rotary accidents like mine.

The good news is thanks to some wonderful friends I did see Jessie in her dance recital and she was wonderful. Dance is such a joy for girls at that age - they are truly in the moment on that stage!

"There is no consciousness without pain"
Carl Gustav Jung

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Trends come and go...but every girl loves a ruffle!

We went to the Bruce Museum Craft Show last weekend in Greenwich, CT. The grounds of the museum are filled with statues and the craft tents were not in rows but instead scattered throughout the museum grounds. But one of the coolest things was that the museum was having an antique clothing exhibition. On display were dresses and other items from the late 1800's to the flappers of the 1920s. They were gorgeous - and so well done. What is so interesting is many of the techniques popular in boutique clothing such as ruffles, ruching, bows, petticoats, fabric flower embellishments can all be found on these century old garments. These embellishments make a dress look beautiful today - just as they did then.

I was waitlisted at this Craft show - but the letter the Museum sent was so kind - I had to read it twice to realize it was a rejection - now that's class. I will reapply next year and hopefully will be able to return with an exhibitor's perspective. It was a really nice day - DJ was off with a friend - and it was just DH, Jessie and myself. Jessie rarely gets a day alone with both of us so it was a nice treat! She loved the animal bronzes at the entrance of the museum.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Fortytoesphotography does Frida right!

Gorgeous! These photos are by Jennifer and Stella-Marie of FortyToesPhotography! Jenn is a great Mom of four beautiful kids! She sweetly agreed to photograph my Frida skirt and she knocked it out of the park! Check out her blog - she has a giveaway right now - she sews too! or click on the link in my blog list!