I know you want to see the Before...
Art Project Reveal: The Tammy Jacket
- Denim jacket - Smashed Lemon; last worn here in September with more black, white and red
- Jeans - Smashed Lemon; last worn here with the jacket for Canada Day in July
- Blouse - Brooks Brothers, consignment; last see here in February in vintage D&G
- Shoes - Wittner, consignment; last worn here in August with satin and optics
- Coat (below) - Denny Rose, consignment; last seen here in September
I liked the rose pattern mixed with the leopard.
No pic of the jacket off as it stayed on all day.
Outerwear - this coat was a snug fit over the jacket and blouse, but snuggly warm.
- Scarf - Carol Gold, vintage, Lazy Susan's
- Mask - by Mom
- Gloves - Danier
Do you see the kitties on my mask?
All the badass stuff.
- Belt - gift from Ruth
- Leather cuff - Guess, thrifted
- Studded cuff = c. 1996
- Necklace - Club Monaco
- Zipper rose - V&A Museum gift shop, London
- Earrings - thrifted
- Hematite ring - thrifted
- Silver/onyx ring - Toccara, vintage fair
Okay, back to the...
Art Project: The Tammy Jacket
Process and detail pictures, plus me blathering.
Tammy's store, Catawampus Fudge & Funk, at 1208 Wharf Street, in Old Victoria. The building is known as Hartwig Court. I used to work in this building in the early 00s in an office, and before that, I worked across the road at the Christmas store in the 80s/90s. It's Gold Rush era, from 1882.
Tammy has been the sole owner/operator of Catawumpus Fudge & Funk for over 10 years. She's so small she doesn't have a website, but she did pen an article for the local paper about why she was staying open during the initial months of the pandemic here (all links 'cause I love, of course).
I actually found a couple of pictures of this building in the Victoria Archives (here). Tammy's storefront is one of these.
I think she might be in the Marine Supplies store. There's a restaurant now on the left of her
This is a major tourist walking route from the picturesque Inner Harbour - this is Wharf Street, so you're only steps from the ocean, although the street is about 30 feet above sea level. You can see a reflection of the old buildings across the street in the windows.
I arrived a few minutes before she opened (oops!), but saw a light on and knocked, and there she was!
Tammy specializes in fancy accessories and clothes: hats, scarves, purses, jewelry, plus odds and ends of weird and wonderful things and loads of dog and cat (and wine!) themed things. I caught her behind the counter, putting her homemade fudge out for the day. Note the old stone and brick and mortar walls, original to the building.
"Don't post that one!" she said. Heh. That motorcycle helmet you see in the foreground is actually a real helmet - it's been upcycled into a backpack! Isn't that cool?
I shoved the gift bag at her and stood back.
And here she is, with the jacket on.
Admiring herself in the mirror.
I love all the clocks tick-tocking. Tammy, I hope you enjoy your "new" jacket - I loved making it for you.
Tammy and I worked together at Fairweather, a mall chain that was around until the early 00s. She was the manager of the big store in downtown Victoria (at Eaton Centre, which is now the Bay Centre) and I was cruising through, dropping off paper resumes while I looked for part-time work while I was at university finishing my degree (after an 11-year gap).
I left my CV at the store, and headed off towards Eatons down the mall. Suddenly, I heard, "Sheila! Sheila! Wait!" and it was Tammy, running after me. She hired me on the spot.
Tammy and I were an amazing tag-team on Saturday mornings, when I would handle "Beechers," a small section of the bigger store (with one of the in-house brands Beechers Brook) with its own separate changerooms and natural light, and she would do the main part of the store. On my way to work, I always stopped in at the now-gone Starbucks in the now-gone Chapters next door and picked us each up a ginormous coffee - mine with Hazelnut, hers with Irish Cream flavouring. We sucked them back and zoomed around on caffeine, handling the crowds until the rest of the day's staff came on. We usually worked straight through a nine-hour day, with an escape to the food court if we were lucky. And we did it in suits and heels!
I worked there for two years and left just after I graduated in 2000 to find office work (regular hours and better pay being my goal), but Tammy and I kept in touch - we even went to Vegas together in August 2002. We always try to get together every 6 months or so for dinner and a catch up.
When we had dinner out recently, I wore my Tattoo Jacket and she admired it, and I encouraged her to bring stuff from her closet for me to decorate for her. She said she had this jacket in black as well, but rarely wore this one.
I kind of knew what I wanted to do on it: a back panel with something relating to our long 20 year friendship, and I also knew that I wanted it to be tattoo-inspired.
That's my assembly of Tombow alcohol-based markers and my usual black permanent markers. I bought colours that Tammy wanted - pinks and purples - in an assortment, as you never know how they are going to work on leather or faux leather (which this jacket is).
I always do tests on the inside seams.
This was extremely useful, as the idea of free-handing multiple banners, a complicated font and also planning roses around it... was absolutely terrifying.
I set up on the deck last weekend, on Saturday.
Okay, let's look at these banners. My plan was to write, "Friends in Fair-Weather and Foul", a nice little nod to our days at Fairweather, plus testament to our long friendship.
The I started sketching on the back to get each banner laid out.
My old skills from making hand-lettered signs for the Christmas store came back into play. In the Days Before Computers, all signs were hand-drawn!
It's a bit hard to see, but here's the back, sketched out. My hand smudged some of it off as I went.
I regret that on the "and" - but it's not a huge deal.
Deep breath, the moment of truth. Permanent marker.
I did the loose outline of the roses where I'd planned. See how nicely they overlap on the banners? A little planning goes a long way.
I added lines for shading, and filled in and darkened the letters.
And here's the back, all done and waiting for colour.
Adding the pink and lavender, alternating colours.
Now the greens (two shades) have been added and I've done some grey over the drawn shade lines on the banners.
On to the sleeves! We need a little side interest to help balance that badass back.
Darkened up. I worked on the sleeves all day on Sunday while I watched football.
On Monday night (during football), I roughed in the roses under the front lapels and down the front of the jacket.
Down at the hem.
I stopped after that. Sore fingers.
I spent another three hours yesterday/Thursday working out on the deck, darkening up the other lapel/side and adding colour.
I made a mark on the elbow, in a totally noticeable spot!
So...and this was hard for me mentally...I let it go of all the little voices in my head, and I made it work. I noticed another mark on the back on the fabric part later and was able to shrug it off. That's how you know a real person drew this!
Colour done! Woo!
And now, my friends, I'm outta here for the weekend! Have a lovely one, and thank you for stopping by. I'll be back on Sunday with tales of adventure.