(embedded video from ted.com above)

I loved this video.  The speaker, Dan Phillips, says perfectly things I’ve always felt about the beauty of mistakes. he calls it the Dionysian aesthetic, and contrasts it with the Appollonian.

My process of designing clothing (or really doing any art) has always been very forgiving of mistakes.  If a piece of fabric is imperfect, has a ‘defect’, I still try to use it.  Either the defect is developed into a design detail, covered up with an abstract applique, reinforced with stitching and left visible.

When I draw and paint, it’s on scraps, often non-square leftover pieces.


I love the imperfect.  My own clothes get worn until they are shredding, and then I try to fix them.

Early on in my creative work, I used only ‘found fabrics.’  I wasn’t actually doing used clothing reconstruction,  which while something I can appreciate, wasn’t a process in which I was interested.  I’d find bigger pieces,  scraps donated, house goods, etc, and meticulously construct pieced raw edged skirts, dresses, and more.  The images below link to the flickr sets from these years.




when I started brook there as a company in 2007, this iteration of my design work, I determined to make things that were more reproducible.  Hence, I no longer use found fabrics, instead sourcing organic fabrics.  There’s a challenge to selling one of a kind pieces.  The fit is complicated.  The costs to create a one of a kind piece are dramatically higher than something reproduced.  & Finally, most customers don’t really like imperfection.

So I’m at a happy medium now.  I offer both one-of-a-kind and reproducible pieces.  I’ve got a system for photographing work quickly, and offering both online and in store.  I work with as little waste as possible , made easier through the aesthetic of piecing, and turning smaller leftover fabric pieces into lingerie.

and most convenient…Young has a very similar aesthetic, an appreciation for the imperfect.  Hence the collection of furniture from reclaimed wood that I now have…and just recently added to the store, Young brought in several of his pieces of art. Photos coming soon.

Posted by:Brook DeLorme

One thought on “aesthetics of imperfection.

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