The Savvy Sage of Sewing Stimulation

Snowy Morning

It’s really started to snow here and it’s really pretty.


So I was messing around over on the TED (which stands for Technology Entertainment Design) talks and saw this fabulous TED talk by Johanna Blakely who describers herself as a Media Maven, so to have her talk about fashion seems a little outside her purview, but this talk is really not.

Here are some of the graphics she uses in the talk so you can see them up close.


Her whole premise is that because fashion can be copied (and if nothing else this is a great resource on what is copyrighted and what isn’t;  what can be copyrighted and what can’t and the different perspectives/reasoning from different countries), this can make fashion just that much more accessible – as illustrated by the above table.

She also says that those areas of artistry that are heavily copyrighted, are wrestling with this whole idea of copyrighting and how they can better achieve the sales of the uncopyrighted world.

She even makes a horrid comment

A knock–off is never the same an original high-end design, at least in terms of materials.  They’re always made of cheaper materials. And even sometimes a cheaper version, can actually have some charming aspects; can breathe a little extra life into a dying trend.

OK – let me pick myself up off the floor and recover from the screeching fingernails across the chalkboard (and so many younger people don’t know that horrid sound but it equates to your worst nightmare voice screeching in your ear at maximum decibels and it scrapes on the inside of your head leaving a memory that aids in the formation of the worst headache you can imagine. – I think that pretty well describes that sound!!!)

And naturally you would expect me to disagree with that statement, but there’s a lot about it that’s correct.  I might have a little problem with the back end – that even a cheap version can breathe life into a dying trend – if it’s dying, I’m not sure the fast fashion industry would really have all that much to do with it, and if they did, it would be because they see nothing else worthy of their time/money – cause believe me – fast fashion, if nothing else, is all about the bottom line……period.

But that aside, the whole speil is marvelous, and really makes you invigorated and excited about what you can learn from other designers and professionals in the business (even what you can learn from fast fashion, and there is something to be learned here – don’t buy it – but that’s for another day.)


Here is her somewhat simplified but at least primer of what’s copyrighted and what’s not and a “sort of” why.

Blakely binary-oppositions-of-copyright

Even with all this info – there’s still more  – for one, the reasoning of why sharable fashion sells more, why high-end designers don’t sell or worry so much anymore about the market on Canal Street in NYC (the epi-center of knock-off items for sale),  and other real gems to know about.

If you’re snowed in or just resting around looking for something to spur your imagination – watch the little talk – I thought it was really enlightening.



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