Archive for February, 2010

Liza Rietz

February 27, 2010

This morning I stumbled on a designer from Portland, Oregon. She has been creating custom clothing since 2001 and has sold her designs to high-end boutiques in major cities across the US and even has her own shop in Portland. You can find her designs at her web page,, or stop by her Etsy Store!

Her designs are unique and beautifully structured, and completely wearable! I really like that her clothing is made with clean natural fabrics, and the pow comes from unique silhouettes and structures and folds that are very unique and very well done.

Ruffle Dress by Lizarietz

Ruffle Dress by Lizarietz

Kimono Sleeve Jumpsuit by Lizarietz

Kimono Sleeve Jumpsuit by Lizarietz

Wool Cloche Light Gray by Lizarietz

Wool Cloche Light Gray by Lizarietz



Felted Leather Clutch Redux

February 24, 2010

Good News! My first felted leather clutch sold in less than a day, so check out the Etsy store for a new one!

Needle Felted Leather Clutch

Lovely Local

February 22, 2010

As I may have mentioned before I am living in Rochester, NY right now. It may not be the New York New York everyone in the rest of the world thinks of, but there is a whole lot of creativity in this city.

One example is my friend Kate, of KateMDot. I first heard of Kate’s lovely creations when she helped myself and our friend Teale with a creatively destructive project called “Trash the Dress.” Kate was very kind to make us a faux wedding dress to trash in the name of the art movement. The results were wonderful and I really appreciate her help with our fun day out.

Soaking it in

She was recently responsible for a repurposed fashion our friend wore for her wedding reception this year too.

you ought to give me wedding rings

Kate is on the right wearing a creation of her own, while the bride is on the left wearing her beautiful reception party dress!

I recently ran into Kate at the craft store picking out fabric for some new pieces in her etsy store and I thought I’d stop in and see what she’s been up to! Kate has been very busy with lots of new additions to her shop. Below are a few of my favorites.

Velvet Chocolate Truffle Dress by KateMDot

Velvet Chocolate Truffle Dress by KateMDot

Beaded Vintage Black Mesh Dress by KateMDot

Beaded Vintage Black Mesh Dress by KateMDot

Slit Cord Jumper by KateMDot

Slit Cord Jumper by KateMDot

Kate’s dresses, pants and tops are all made from recycled fashions. She does a beautiful job making them and makes a pretty good model too! Head over to Kate’s shop and check out more of her one of a kind, hand-made clothes!

New Goodies!

February 20, 2010

Needle Felted Leather Clutch By Megnificent Made

Needle Felted Leather Clutch By Megnificent Made

A new item in the Megnificent Made Etsy store!

Excuses Excuses

February 19, 2010

I don’t mean to be making excuses for my not-so-regular posting but lately I have been busy. I started this blog with not much going on and I wasn’t really sure how many people would follow, what kind of a commitment I should make, or what topics in general I should cover. I am surprised how many of you read, how much I actually enjoy blogging, and the things I discover while looking for topics. For the most part I have been pretty regular but the last few weeks haven’t been as blogful as I would like. I promise to change that!

One of the things that has been keeping me busy is a new job I have picked up two days a week while I am in New York. I am happily soaking up knowledge at Dixon Schwabl Integrated Marketing firm in Victor, New York. It is nice to be around creative people and in a very creative environment. They have a slide! They have also just this week started the massive job of re-painting the office with more bright and beautiful colors and patterns.

You can follow along on their blog here. It is mostly written by employees but also features an occasional guest blogger.

Another thing keeping me busy, as I have mentioned before, is all of my sewing. I have really gotten into making clothes and I do promise to photograph more this weekend. I have recently started to stray from patterns which is exciting and scary. It really makes me think more carefully before I start to cut. You can see in my last blog a purse I made that was completely pattern free. So brave of me!

I have also made a clutch version of the needle felted leather bag that I will be posting in the shop hopefully this weekend. I hesitate to photograph lately because I prefer to use natural light and we seem to be short on that here this time of year.

Speaking of posting to the shop, I added another camera wristlet to the Megnificent Made Etsy store!

Black and White Floral Camera Wristlet by Megnificent Made

Black and White Floral Camera Wristlet by Megnificent Made

Other things going on in my life…

I have been some what busy, and thankfully so, with some freelance design work. One of them I would like to share with you when it is appropriate is a set of greeting cards for a non-profit agency. I’m very proud of them!

I am also working on my residency application for Australia. Theres an awful lot of work involved. Yesterday I had my fingerprints taken as well as new passport photos to send with the application. I reeeeealllly wish this new photo could be my passport photo! It’s so much better than the horrible one I have now. But of corse, the photo that is going to sit in a folder somewhere tucked away would be the good one.

I promise to take some photos this weekend and hope the light is good.

A New Direction!

February 15, 2010

Something I have wanted to try for ages is needle felting! I’ve been very distracted by learning to construct clothing, design work, and work at a local PR firm. Recently I was inspired by a purse my mom brought home from the Anthropologie sale rack. It was a beautiful sack style purse with leather handles and was decorated with burnt red needle felted wool on black.

I loved the bag but I definitely wanted to try making it for myself! Below is my first attempt (and success!) and needle felting, purse design, and sewing with leather. It was a really fun project!

Felted Leather Purse

The bag is a heavy wool felt in dark slate grey with all different colored wool yarns. Pinks, yellows, browns, blacks, purples, blues and greens. I also used bundles of wool to add some variation in thickness. It took me two days to felt the fabric and from there I cut the shape. I really wanted something asymmetrical and something that would show off the leather strap. On one side is a kind of slumped rounded satchel and the other is a corner where the leather follows the edge into the corner.

This is my first time carelessly cutting into fabric with just a general idea of what I wanted the finished project to look like. I allowed space for seams, darts and zippers and was pretty happy with what my mental guestimations resulted in.

The inside is lined with a beautiful brown silk and has every pocket I could ever want. Gum sized, pen sized, phone sized, iPod sized and one zippered pocket.

The top has a really nice heavy-duty gold metal zipper. I wanted all of my materials to contrast a bit so with my soft fluffy crafty purse I wanted a hard industrial looking zipper and a super textured geometric leather.

This was my first experience making a leather strap. I read a lot online about buying a teflon plate and foot for the machine to keep the leather moving through the machine smoothly but I am not about to invest in new machine parts. Instead I put tissue paper on either side of the leather I was stitching, and used clamps instead of needles to avoid extra holes. The tissue paper worked great but afterwards is a bit of a challenge to remove. A damp (not wet!) tooth-brush was able to soften the paper and scrub it lightly out of the stitches.

All in all I’m quite happy with this. I’d like to know how people feel about it. I have gotten a positive response on my purse but I am thinking of making some smaller clutch style bags with my felted fabric and leather to sell in the Megnificent Made store. I’ll have to wrap my head around designing this week!

Birthday Treats

February 11, 2010

Today is my birthday but we combined my celebration with Superbowl festivities on Sunday. Everyone made it a delicious day.

The whole family was treated to BBQ ribs, fried pickles and onion rings, Clams Casino, taco dip, buffalo chicken crustini, egg rolls, shrimp and loads of snacks. On top of that my mom made a trifle with six layers of fresh fruit, vanilla pudding, pound cake and whipped cream.

Thanks everyone for making my 25th special!

CreativiTea 3

February 11, 2010

This is post three of a collection of beautiful, unique and creative tea packaging design!


This is a student creation although it’s presentation is pretty professional.  The designer is Felix Reinki of Weimar, Germany. I love how functional the “Tbag” design is. It is such a creative use of lettering to grip the rim of the mug and fit into a tear away packet. Excellent design!

Tea to-go sticksThis creative take on tea is called the Tea to-go Stick by Jeeyun Michaella Chung. These bamboo wisks have a tea bag hanging in the center and allow you to better infuse your cup of tea by stirring while steeping. It is an interesting design and a beautiful tea bag, but an awful lot of waste! This seems like something I would like though because I’m a steep and toss kind of girl. I hate to let a tea bag soak for long.

CreativiTea Two

February 10, 2010

Yesterday I started this series on creative tea package design. I have always really loved package design and they are some of my favorite design projects to take on. Unfortunately packaging projects are less common for me. The following designs take something ordinary and turn them into beautiful works of art. For those of you that are not picky about the origins of your tea and the status of the leaf, these designs…regardless of the tea they hold… encourage buyers of all sorts if only for the uniqueness of their design. You can expect the creative posting to continue into tomorrow!

Origami Tea Bag

These little works of are are by a Russian designer named Nathalia Ponomareva. She has combined the Japanese art of Origami with the Japanese art of tea. Each bag is folded into a different Origami animal and slowly unfirls as it steeps. I also think the graphic design on the box is well done. I am a big fan of clean lines and flat color. The folded tea tab is a lovely touch as well! I am curious though whether or not this tea is available for sale. The package does not seem to have a brand and the shot seems very rendered in places. Either way, I hope it is something making it’s way to the market if it is not there already!


This design for Tpoda is by designer Elisabeth Soos. At this time it is just a concept. The design is creative, and I like that the focus was given to the tab rather than the back. I’d like a better shot of it in action. It seems the boat is a bit large, or rather the mug is a bit small. I wonder about the length of the string in relation to the cut as well…All things I am sure are worked out in the testing of this concept! I would also like to have seen the designer show off a little more how she would have packaged this design. But I love the idea of a little boat floating in my tea 🙂


February 8, 2010

I love creative package design. It was always something I wanted to get really involved with while I was in design school. Tea is another love of mine, and these beautiful package designs are too creative to ignore!

Hanger TeaThis beautiful package design is by designer Soon Mo Kang. Unfortunately at this stage it is still just a mock-up but hopefully in the future they will be available for purchase. A few practical points had come up with this design regarding the amount of empty space, and whether or not it could successfully ship without losing the T-shirts on the rail.  I am not a big fan of the way it hangs from the edge of the cup…however, during my barista days we often served teas by hanging them over a stir that rested on the rim of the cup. Much more ideal for the coat hanger although not something people would normally do at home. I think that the negative space is OK since the majority of purchases will be made on the factor that the design is novel and it makes sense to be putting them on display like this. Keeping those shirts in place for shipping could be an easy fix. A few slits in the rail to nest the hangers into could be made, even adhesives could be explored. Regardless, it is a beautiful design!

Tea Package

These tea bags are adorable. They relax in your tea like a hot bath (which is normally how drinking tea feels!)

Tea PackThe tea bags feature different characters and come in creative packs that not only hold them securely, they display your characters in their settings. There are also school buses full of kids, A morning radio show setting, and holiday boxes full of reindeer and santas. These bags are designed by a design firm called WDARU for a tea company called MNUM…from what I can gather from their foreign website! As far as I can tell, MNUM tea isn’t for sale yet, at least not in the US!

Two more creative teas to come tomorrow!