While browsing the web one day, I discovered Last Online, which embodies much of the philosophy that drives the Wearable Art Blog. Last Online looks for independent designers who provide an alternative to the "high street and the more well known brands...and [have] a stong respect for craft skills and design."
Gold and red crochet collar. Handmade braid and ribbon sash.
As I was looking around the Last Online site, I found the work of Miss Amy Phipps, who earned her fashion/textiles degree from Brighton University in the U.K. a few years ago. She settled there and now spends time "in her little cottage" knitting and crocheting clothing and collars.
I was drawn to Phipp's elegant collars, which are inspired by the costumes worn by Russian folk and circus performers in the 1920s. Phipps combines recycled yarns and hand-dyed vintage linens and uses techniques such as hairpin-lace crochet and braiding to make these lovely collars. The combination of colors, textures, patterns, and handiwork in each of her pieces is truly amazing.
Don't the collars look like they're from the Victorian era or from some other bygone period? But they're anything but old fashioned. You could wear one like the pink beaded collar (above) to dress up or accessorize a collarless top -- or even a bridal dress.