The term wearable art entered the fashion world in the 1960s and 70s. Far more than fashion and art, it also represented a cultural movement. Women began expressing individuality through one-of-a-kind craft designs in apparel and jewelry. Often handmade, designs utilized crochet, knitting, and leather tooling complementing nature themes. Apparel reflected the need for comfort, drape and fit. It wasn’t about mass selling, but instead about expression of the designer and the wearer.
Fast forward from the 1960s to 2021. Countries have become more interdependent, cultures more intertwined, technology more advanced. Yes, 2020 has emphasized our independence again. Today’s wearable art has the advantage of computers and technology that reduces the time-consuming hand crafting to allow more affordable, yet expressive designs.
Jerry Kohl, owner of Brighton began his business with Leegin Leather at the peak of the wearable art movement in the 1960’s. His company’s hand tooled leather belts became known for craftsmanship, durability, and quality. Today, he again produces wearable art in his handbag collections. From the whimsical designs of Tom Clancey with an almost Andy Warhol flavor, to the botanical designs of Catherine Hong, today’s woman has an opportunity to express herself with Brighton’s wearable art.
Brighton utilizes high tech leather printing machines to precisely transfer the intricate designs of a spring garden. Each pass of the printer leaves a specific color to create a design that looks individually hand painted. Paired with your personally selected outfit whichever wearable art handbag you choose gives the distinctiveness that makes it truly your own statement.
Nancy Pride owns Morgan Fitzgerald’s and Merle Norman located at 3800 South Texas Avenue, Bryan, one mile north of University Drive 979 268 0608, www.fitzyou.com.