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Remember this?

It became the inspiration for the winning dress in Project IMA: INspired last night. The show presents exciting avant-garde work based on the designs of the IMA exhibit, American Legacy: Norell, Blass, Halston and Sprouse, all famous designers who are originally from Indiana.

I can’t provide many details this morning because I’m packing out for the big sewing retreat. I’ll share the experience as best I can in pictures. There are a few stories I want to revisit later! My friend Verena and I went together. She MADE the skirt she wore last night. I’m so sorry that the person who took this photo didn’t shoot the frame vertically. The skirt was gorgeous gunmetal satin with a crinoline underneath. Classy as all get-out–just like Verena! I’m wearing a 1950s vintage sweater I bought in 1988 at a vintage shop in Bloomington. It was purchased for a first date with my husband, who had invited me to the symphony. I chickened out and didn’t wear it because I thought it might make the wrong impression! What a goose! It’s so timeless that people never guess it’s a vintage piece.

Other highlights: our friend Barbara Riordon (right) and her model Shyla, a mere six-foot beauty. Later this fall Shyla leaves for New York, where she hopes to take her modeling career to the next level. Love Barbara’s black and white design. It has amazing details that aren’t visible here.

I wasn’t able to capture all my favorites, but in the interest of saving space (I’m always wondering whether I might crash the site with all these photos) here are a few collages from the evening.

Models these days! It seems like they are prettier than ever! I fear that too many people are afraid to approach a beautiful woman. These two were just so lovely to talk to.

The red white and blue strapless dress (below, left) was the designer’s first show. She’s pictured with the model. The long red dress on the right had amazing pleated details that looked like smocking from a distance. It only took 90 hours for the designer to stitch the bodice–and that’s just the bodice! The designer has been in Uganda, teaching women to sew. She recently had to return to the U.S. I’ll tell you more about in a later post.

Nikki Blaine’s entry (below left) had much to admire–texture, feathers, shimmer. Little did we know there was a pair of skinny pants underneath. We discovered that at the after party! Clever. I also loved the dress on the lower right, designed and modeled by an Indiana native who now lives in Rhode Island. Very Marilyn Monroe-ish––a feature that she played to the hilt on the runway. She’s pictured here with her boyfriend, also an artist. His specialty is printmaking.

I hope you’ll forgive any mistakes I made today! I’m in a terrible rush, but that’s the beauty of the web: you can always fix ’em later.

What’s your favorite dress in the Project IMA INspired show?

Life is short. Wear the good stuff.