Hello all! My name is Issa Mello and this spring I've been selected as the University's Lila Bath Intern. This means I get to spend a week in San Antonio, Texas at the University of the Incarnate Word studying and analyzing all of the culture, dress, and the extensive Lila Bath costume collection. Throughout my trip I'll be posting a couple blogs and plenty of pictures to share my experience with you!
Before I get too far into the trip, here's a little background information about me. I'll be entering the fall semester as an Apparel Design major in the College of Design, University of Minnesota. Born and raised in Plymouth, MN, a northwest suburb of the Twin Cities. I found my passion for apparel design at a rather late stage, after completing my freshman year at the U. Ever since then, however, my courses, classmates, faculty, and of course, family and friends have inspired me to delve further into my interests. Along this journey I've discovered an intrigue for children's wear as well as surface and textile design. Both of which I hope to explore further during the production of my senior line in the fall.
Throughout my time in San Antonio I am looking to learn a few surface design techniques that are used in Southern Texas and Mexican dress. These techniques can be meticulous, but are very characteristic and common in traditional Mexican dress. I also am curious about the quinceañera tradition, the celebration for a girl's 15th birthday. This event is a very important part in a girl's life and is treated much like a wedding, with a lavish dress, dinner, and party. Living in Minnesota for my entire life, I don't have much knowledge about this event and I would love to learn to how dress is involved and its associated meanings for the birthday girl.
top left: Myself at "Twelve: XII", the apparel design senior fashion show 2012
top right: A dress I designed last summer, including ombre dying and detailed style lines. Three words to describe my design aesthetic would be thoughtful, inspired, and practical.
bottom right:The Lila Bath Gallery at The University of the Word Incarnate in San Antonio, Texas. (photo via http://www.uiw.edu/fashion/lilabathgallery.html).