By Bernadette Kelly
Interior Design Principal Bernadette Kelly has over 20 years of experience in interior and architectural design for projects all over the country and China, from commercial office tenant improvements to hospitality and residential design. She joined Weber Thompson in 2012, helping the Interior Design studio grow in size and reputation during the subsequent years. In 2016, she was promoted to Principal.
During the last 8 months, the Weber Thompson interior design team worked on designing a garment for Product Runway, a friendly industry-wide fashion competition modeled after the show of a similar name. We were teamed with Bank & Office Interiors/Steelcase as our sponsor, and spent nights and weekends designing and producing a couture-worthy garment. We were tasked with designing ‘with an eye for the dreamlike quality’ and ‘maybe sweetly risqué. But always high fashion.’
Our team drew inspiration from the poppy flower – for its bright color, its tissue-like petals and its mythical symbolism: sleep and peace. We wanted to create an elegant and beautiful garment that embodied all of those qualities. But more importantly, create a garment that wasn’t a costume, but a gown that each of us would want to wear ourselves. In the end, we did just that. We were aiming for romance and delicacy, with a little edge, which took the shape of the beading and raw-edged shrug, respectively. Throughout the design process we stayed true to our original concept and we couldn’t be more proud of the result. Our model and co-worker, Rachael Bauer, really took our breath away as she walked the catwalk.
We used Designtex drapery textiles, task chair seating upholstery and embellished the gown with spray painted miscellaneous hardware used in systems furniture.
On Friday, May 3rd, our team, along with 11 other design firms, revealed our creations on the runway to a packed house. It was an amazing show – all of the participating teams created well crafted pieces and the models really worked the runway! The whole experience was a lot of work, but so much fun – we are looking forward to the next one!
See the rest of the Product Runway entries on Jinda Photography’s blog.
And more photos from the event are on the Weber Thompson Interior Design Facebook page (be sure to ‘Like’ us to keep up on the latest events).
Weber Thompson 2013 Product Runway Team: Carrie Smith, Bernadette Rubio, Mandy Callaway, Manuela Hess, Lauren Blass, Rachael Bauer (our supermodel), Monica Knapp
Bank & Office Interiors: Lauren Henley
Steelcase: Emily Moses