5/18/2016

Designer Spotlight: Ann Normandy Designs


When I first decided to shift the tone of The Closet Confessional, I was pretty nervous (read about that shift here). Nervous about a lot of perceptions, but ultimately, I was worried about losing connection. Which in hindsight is pretty ridiculous. Because acknowledging and sharing on a deeper level tends to lead to a deeper connection. Sure, there would be people that would disengage. But the people that stayed would stay for something I authentically believed in.

And in the 6 weeks since I shifted this blog, I have connected not only with my readers, but with other creatives with similar beliefs. One of those creatives is designer Kim Collins of Ann Normandy Designs.

Kim reached out to me the day I announced my departure from fast fashion (thank you universe!) and we immediately connected ands started brainstorming collaborations. Ann Normandy Designs is a 9 piece collection, handmade with reclaimed handwoven french linen. The one-of-a-kind pieces are made from antique fabric that was literally started from seed. Talk about slow fashion.

For this post, I borrowed two of her pieces - the white sleeveless shift dress and the short sleeved dress in this incredible indigo color (one of the only non-white items she creates). Both dresses have pockets (total bonus) and are extremely versatile. Either dress could easily go from the beach (pair it with sandals and a straw tote) to dinner with friends (swap out your sandals and tote for heels and a clutch). The versatility and quality of her designs are what make the collection worthy of the investment and pieces that will literally last a lifetime.

According to her website, “After worldwide research of antique and new textiles, Ann Normandy has selected the finest fabrics, small-batch dyed, to ensure that each piece meets our standard of ageless beauty. Constructed with time-honored techniques in the United States. Steeped in a tradition of design and artisan craft, an Ann Normandy garment will be treasured for years to come.”

In short, her designs are meant to last.

Because of the antiquity and rarity of the fabrics used, the price point for her handmade collection is not for everyone. Kim acknowledges this and created a solution by selling her patterns. If you can’t afford the price point but you like the collection and like the design, you can order the pattern and create your own designer piece. And if you can’t sew, Kim encourages you to hire a local seamstress to create the garment for you.

Kim doesn’t just support sustainable fashion with her collection, but supports her local industry as well. And in order to experience that first hand, I’ll be working with Kim to go through the process of creating a garment from scratch, teaming up with Ann Normandy designs and the Detroit Garment Group’s sewing program, Detroit Sewn. So stay tuned for a behind the scenes look of that expereince.

And in the meantime, learn more about Ann Normandy Designs here!

“The grace of her silhouette, an elegant neckline, the clothing a woman chooses should celebrate her unique features not compete for attention.” -Ann Normandy Designs










dresses (both): ann normandy designs
earrings: silpada
sunglasses: pitaya
hat: old, similar

photography by remy roman