This month, Olympia fashion designer Arty Gottlieb discusses the future and evolution of Arty Party Designs, and introduces “Back it Up,” his newest collection.
Chance Fashion: What’s new for you and your brand? Any upcoming projects?
Arty Gottlieb: Recently my most time consuming projects have been putting the finishing touches on two collections set to show back to back weekends with Chance Fashion, April 8th in Seattle and April 15th in Olympia. Also, following the March mens show I received several custom orders, which I am extremely excited about; I love the challenge of making someone the dream purse or hat.
You’ll be presenting at Chance Fashion’s 2017 Spring/Summer Show in April, what is the name and concept of the collection you’ll be showcasing?
My 2017 spring/summer collection is called “Back it Up,” and the concept is confident/sexy; feeling comfortable in your own skin and owning it. The collection is a leather(vinyl) and lace extravaganza, featuring classic style in a sexy modern way.
How long have you been working on this collection?
“Back it Up” was actually started last December before I signed up for Chance Fashion. Once II signed up I realized that I wanted to show “Back it Up” at the spring/summer show, so I set it aside and made “Menergy,” my menswear collection for the March show.
Is this your first collection featuring full-figure apparel?
Yes and no, I have always designed with a full-figured person in mind, and probably always will, being that I myself would be considered full figured. This will be the first time I am having full figured looks go down the runway, but most definitely will not be the last. I love dressing all different body types because I think everyone should be able to find garments that they feel amazing in.
Much of your work experiments with blurring gender stereotypes in fashion, is that something we will see at play with “Back it Up”?
Yes, you will see gender nonconformity in this collection and every collection I create until I’m told not to. The reason is super simple: I don’t care what gender you identify as, you deserve to have beautiful clothes that flatter your body in a way you want and make you feel good about yourself. You will often see me “blurring gender stereotypes” because I want people to know that I will make gorgeous garments for whoever wants to wear them no matter how they identify.
If you used three words to describe your design aesthetic, what would they be?
Fierce, freaky, and avant-garde
Has there ever been a piece-in this or any collection-that has been your all-time favorite to create?
Actually in this collection I absolutely loved the way this vinyl jacket came out, it was going to be a simple bomber jacket but I ended up quilting it and it turned out so great. After the jacket was complete I loved it so much that it inspired and pushed the collection in a different direction.
What is the extent of your education in fashion design, are you self taught?
Unfortunately I have zero education in fashion design. Other than my obsession with vogue and fashion in general I am completely self taught. I learned pretty much everything I know from ripping things apart to see how they are made and trial and error, heavy on the error. I always tell people it’s a good thing I work fast because of how often I have to re-sew things. I love the challenge of figuring out how to make things for the first time.
Is it your goal to eventually design as a full time career?
I would love to design as a full time career, for my own brand or an established brand. But, until then, I would love pretty much any job in the fashion industry. After being a cake decorator for the last 10 years I know there is so much I still need to learn about the fashion industry.
What do you hope to accomplish in the Seattle/Olympia fashion scene?
I think my biggest goal in the Seattle/Olympia fashion scene is to get my name and brand out there for people to see. I’m so new that I feel like taking any and all opportunity to show my wearable art is the best thing i can do. Also, getting my name there out means getting more custom orders for purses, hats, accessories and garments.
How do you market and advertise for your brand?
Marketing and advertising are truly my weak points, and they’re one of the reasons I had some design schooling behind me. For now my Instagram and Facebook are my only tools, but I hope to add an Etsy, Pinterest, and possibly a web site soon.
Where can potential customers purchase Arty Party Design pieces?
Customers can purchase Arty Party Design original pieces or place custom orders by contacting me on my Facebook page Arty Party Designs or on Instagram (@artyparty22)
Arty Gottlieb will be showcasing at Chance Fashion’s 2017 Spring/Summer Show on April 8th.
Purchase your tickets here: chancefashion.strangertickets.com