True story: Circa 2003 a client turns up to my start up no doors shonky garage studio in the country. Despite the phone consultation (although if I am to be honest) I probably just emailed her and expected that she would read it. She shows up for her Glam shoot with no clothes, wearing boy jeans and and a black T-shirt. I was in that start up business phase you know the one, where her payment meant I would make rent and eat that week. So the reality was I was devastated, panicking about money and I thought there is no way I can let this woman go, I will photograph her in this T-shirt and make it work. I had no clothes I could lend to her so I sat her in the makeup chair acted calm and went inside to freak out while she was getting her Hair and Makeup done.
I pride myself on being a creative solution finder. Basically that means most of the time whenever I’ve found myself in trouble I say “how can I get out of this” and immediately I go into creative solutions mode. I did have a few squares of fabric so I took them out to the studio and I made a dress in fact I made five different dresses kind of half fashion Toga and half sarong. End of story she was happy her sale was not huge but I got paid and made rent and a huge lesson was learned in the art of preparing my client connecting before the shoot and having some basic pieces in the studio to get me out of trouble if this happened again. The Sash became a signature piece in my studio and has stayed there for the last 12 years.
I sent my Assistant/Makeup Artist Caitlin to Joann’s Fabric the other day and gave her $20 to buy something that looks like satin or silk but nothing expensive and nothing to shiny. She returned with 3 yards of this fabric $3.99 per yard so plus tax the purchase was $14.95. From this fabric I cut pieces three long sashes in different widths from 6″ to 12′ wide and then I sewed them inside out and then turned them back the right ways (like a pillowcase) and sewed the end. The VIDEO of me making the sash and styling it is being edited now. Then I made some looks and photographed them for you. The up shot is I think every photographer can make this it’s affordable and its quite amazing. There are so many options in both fabrics, and color and styling in fact endless designs have fun. You can google infinity dress to get wrapping ideas or just freestyle. You can use tulle, you can use cotton let the dress draping begin.
The skirt she is wearing is a tube skirt made of T-shirt fabric and has an elastic waist I have small medium and large in the studio they range in price from around $8-$40 depending where you find them I also have a range of slips in Black and Nude as these are basic wardrobe foundations that most people do not have or think to bring
My challenge to you is lets see how creative you can be and post your images on InBedWithSue Facebook group and share your amazing ideas. Here are some ideas to get you started. All of my DIY studio hacks came from actually having to problem solve on a budget but the truth is this is a great creative way to make something and get excited about photographing it.