Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Journal Entries: Post Dress That Makes the Woman

November 6, 2011
Today is the last day.
Even though I am not wearing the dress, today is the last day.  I feel naked and under dressed wearing this t-shirt recently acquired from my friend Cathy, a pair of jeans, my vibram 5 finger shoes, and what?  what/ my feet feel good, but my chest and my legs feel naked. 
I am in the airport waiting to go back to Burlington.  The woman across from me...her mother is dying.  May she be free from suffering and the root of suffering.  The worry on her face is palpable.  May she experience grace and the root of grace.  I can feel her sadness in my own chest.  We all will experience this.  We all have.  The loss of a parent, a friend, a foe, the birth of emancipation, the mark of getting closer to spiritual freedom... it is sad as hell, but... it is sad as hell.
I keep thinking about this project. 
Did the dress break up with me?  When does an artist recognize when a pieces is over and done, what about if it is premature?
I suppose I could have fixed the zipper, but everything just felt done.  What now?  I feel loss.  Lighter. Missing something.  Naked is not the right word to describe this feeling.  Incomplete is not the right word either, that implies a feeling of being unfinished.  No this feels finished.  My goals accomplished. 
Holy Shit!  I did it!  One Year! Awesome! Huzzah, Hurrah, Yippee!  I feel proud of myself, accomplished, complete, but wait... yes, that is what this feeling is.  A completeness I have never felt before... hmmm something to contemplate.
My goal was to wear a dress for a month and work on it and explore how a garment... no, how my relationship with a dress has the power to transform... the idea was that the dress would ultimately make the woman and even though I was the one in control, ie, the woman who made the dress, I feel transformed, changed, altered... forgive the pun... ha ha. 
So now what? Sleep.  Rest. Jeans.  No more oh my god I have to work on this dress feeling.  No more creation anxiety... at least for a little while.  Relax.  Play with my son.  Work on other projects.  Give more of my attention to my other work.  Teaching.  Art consulting.  Curtains Conservation.  Public Art School.  Focus energies on building something lasing in my Burlington Arts Community.  I have some new ideas that now, I have no doubt that I will be able to see them through.  
The Thank Yous----
Special thanks to donors of this project, be it material, lace, clothing, emotional and financial.  
Thank you to my family, especially Clark and Asa, Y'all are my champions and I will never forget when Asa told me how beautiful my dress was.. what a memory for him to have, a year of mama in dresses.  Thanks to my own parents.  Thanks to my in laws.  Thank you Chris Teague for your wonderful comments and inspiring stories.  Thank you to Maggie, Beth, Lisa and Elisa for you donations to keep the blog rolling!  Thank you Vermont Arts Council for my Creation Grant to help fund this new round of projects.  Thank you to Strange Dolls, SEABA, Davis Studios, and Sarah Millis  for promoting my project on your social networking sites. 
Thank you to Christy Mitchell for being born...because if I wasn't in need of a birthday present for you on November 7, 2010, The Dress That Makes The Woman Project may have remained just and idea and not a realization.  Thanks to Het Haudenshield and Matt Chase for taking my sad pathetic phone calls and helping me to press on when I wanted to give up... I love you both soooo much!
Thanks to my Aunt Mary, who came through with the perfect final dress as well as financing the trip to the perfect final event for that dress and this project.  It was your night to shine and the dress knew it... and it could not have worked out any better, what a spectacular ending. 
Thanks to my mom for giving me clothes to wear post- dress that makes the woman.  If it wasn't for the black wool savior dress, I would have had to either go naked to the Museum of Fine Arts Houston or just pouted in my room. 
Thanks to my cousin Lisa for all the wonderful interviews.  You questions and kind ear encouraged and helped me shape and define some of my lofty aspirations for this project. 
Thank you to my dad for the fancy camera which resulted in better pictures.
Thank you to my brother for helping to zip me in the final dress and for capturing the final moments on his iphone of it's memorable malfunction. 
Thanks to Rick Levinson of RL photo for offering to document and photograph my girls in their final glory...
... and thank you to all of those friends and family for finally getting why I had to do this project.
 November  8, 2011
Again a feeling of nakedness creeps in.  What am I wearing?
November 14, 2011
I feel like I am cheating.  Like when I wake up, I owe the public something more spectacular than just my black jeans, black top and brown scarf.  Hmmmm looks like a day for red lips. 
November 15, 2011
Forgetfulness... feeling weird energy, like I should be doing something with my hands... but what?

Wylie Sofia Garcia


  1. Can't wait for your next adventure! You are so inspiring Wylie!

  2. Boo! I will miss looking forward to opening igoogle to see if there are new photos or textile adventures with Wylie today. Thanks for sharing this project and all of the gorey details with all of us. It has been so fun and so inspiring for so many of us. Like the other person said - I look forward to the next adventure.