Failure of Industry

June 30, 2008

On Sunday I walked over to Emily Kingan’s photo shoot for her Spring 09 collection. She rented a large warehouse space in an underused industrial section of N. Portland- under the freeway overpasses and among small dead-end streets. The area itself was worth a photo shoot- gorgeous weathered paint, large barn like double doors, blackberry bushes swarming under the eaves, and a quiet deserted feel. Quite romantic. Inside the studio Emily and her team – stylist, photographer, and two models- were just getting started. Emily makes gender-less clothing. Her line bridges the space between “male” versus “female” clothing, harmonizing somewhere in the middle. Her debut collection consists of delicate and beautifully crafted button-up shirts in a palette of dirty lime, rose, denim blue, and dusty brown with contrasting detail inside the collar. Her attention to detail and insistence on perfection make these made-to-order shirts truly worth every penny. Plus she is is my studio-mate and an all around awesome person. Contact her at

Mascot Missing

June 26, 2008

This is for Bonnie- she might have a lead as to the whereabouts of my mascot – the turquoise blue horse that belonged to my mom. I coveted this little figurine throughout childhood and cherished her once my mom passed her on to me. She always sat on her own little shelf in my studio- and one day, she wasn’t there. This was years ago but the search continues…

Sea Foam Blue

June 24, 2008

I’m crazy about this photo- that color! with the dark blue accent complete with little polka-dots. I also love the matching top and bottom, a complete suit. Is anyone else feeling it? I am considering colors for Spring 09 and this one, sea foam blue, is winning the race today.

Please and Thank You

June 23, 2008

“Hi, my name is Dori and I live in Maine on a small island. I had a wedding party to attend to in the past week and as every woman, couldn’t find anything to wear in my own closet. I was lucky to have a friend who owns one of your empire style dresses (a yellow dress with black horses design). I never would have thought to wear empire style and yellow dress, but with no doubt that was the most flattering piece that I’ve ever worn. That’s how I’ve learned about FILLY. Thank you for making me feel beautiful!”
I was wondering how one living out in nowhere can buy your clothes? Is it possible to buy your pieces online?
Thank you.”

I get inquiries like this quite often and the answer is YES, anyone can buy directly from me. If you know your Filly size it makes it easier. Just let me know what style you are interested in and I can tell you what colors are available. I send you the dress, you send me a check. Pretty simple. In general Filly dresses and tunics are $175, skirts are $110, and tops are $80. I feel a little crude talking money but I figure, I would want to know this information if I were excited about a line.

Oh, and the image above is from Spring 07. It is currently on sale at Olio United in Portland, OR.

Passive Aggression

June 11, 2008

The Fashion Fight Club: A Portland Designer Collective.   My dear friend Kenya (sky& has started an independent designer’s collective with the intention of organizing and supporting each other through shared information, group shows, emotional support, guest lecturers, block trade show rates, and camaraderie. Twice a month we meet for coffee and talk. It is so nice to be able to ask someone else how they go about this fashion thing- and not a teacher or boss but another gal like myself who is just figuring it out through trial and error. We have a blog (yes, another blog.) if you are in the Portland area check it to look for upcoming sales and parties. Fun fun.

Fashion Work

June 6, 2008

In studio. Thursday evening. All week I have been waiting for fabric to arrive before I can officially get started designing spring 09. Doing a little in-the-meantime puttering. Everybody else has gone home so Bob Marley is turned way up.

Currently I am collecting on fall and holiday 07, retailing spring 08, manufacturing fall 08, promoting holiday 08, and designing spring 09. Not sure this is what I imagined the life of a fashion designer to be. A lot to keep on track.

Fashion School

June 5, 2008

I lived in the attic of Ruth’s old house in Berkeley while I attended fashion school. I loved Berkeley with its great houses and endless neighborhoods to walk through. And I loved this house- mostly the fact that I lived here with two other women and we spent enormous amounts of time drinking wine and talking crudely. Josh, Jeff, Quentin and I made the space livable by putting in a spiral staircase where the 2nd floor hallway closet was. The atic was huge, smelled strongly of wood and had a climate all its own. In the winter it was crisp and refreshing compared to the forced air heating down below. In the summer it baked and I lived without clothes and hated to touch anything. I miss everything about it.


June 2, 2008

Most of my excursions revolve around Bello. Basically getting him out in the world doing fun dog things. This ride was amazing. It is hard to tell but the grass was atleast 8 feet in some places along the path. It was evening by this time and we were just cruising. The bike equivalent of a stroll. He was tired and content to relax and look around. And the smell! Portland in the springtime is a concoction of every possible blooming flower- on trees, shrubs, little creepers, garden plants, wide fields. I have to stop all the time to find the smell on the air.

This time I stopped to pee in the tall grass and a bicyclist my age rode by and looked down on me. “hey” I said with heavy acceptance of my predicament. He laughed out loud with appreciation.

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