What are memories to you?

I am a person who has a very auditory memory, that’s why I’m good with languages, so memories for me are preserving the messages in your memory and then going back to them and reliving them, because that’s the beauty of memories, being able to relive them many times. 

What does a family dress in your closet convey to you?

A dress from someone in my family that reaches me is like having a part of this person, someone essential and meaningful. It’s preserving a piece of this person in these garments. Since we are not eternal in the world, we always want to keep something that stays with us of this person. Clothes are a good option; you can give it multiple uses and even it can continue to live a long time.

Why did you decide to participate in the Reawaken project?

Why did you decide to participate in the Reawaken project?
I decided to participate in your project because I think it is crucial for a transformation of a vision of clothes and fashion. We know that the fashion industry is very contaminating and you are contributing a sentimental, more emotional part because behind each of these garments there is a whole story and beautiful things to tell and share and I think you do it in an artistic and sensitive way that gets to convey this form of thinking different and of preserving things, taking care of them. I really like your project.

What is your connection to this dress?

This garment represents my grandmother Elvira. It represents her personality and at the same time the memory I have of her is by dressing this little jacket and also because the brown looked great with her eyes.

Can you tell us something about the person to whom it belonged?

My grandmother was a person who loved clothes and took a lot of care of herself. She died 4 years ago and I always had a close bond with her and also in the aspect of caring about physical appearance, dressing well, elegant. And then she was a traveler, she liked to travel but she had a problem, she was always cold! Then she was very petite, very huggable.
Never, never, she stopped wearing heels until she was 80 or more. I remember one time together we bought the same shoes. We had a very intimate relationship as far as clothes were concerned. Even my friends would tell me, what fashionable is your grandmother! Always she was dressed well, very elegant, and with a strong presence. She was always cold, though!

What are your expectations about the transformation we could give to this dress?

I hope it continues to have this elegant style of my grandmother, some of her personality. She wore dresses that could be combined well with everything, because she was a traveler, with heels, but a traveler, and so I would like the garment to have this versatility of being able to wear it easily with everything and to help me with the cold weather here in Belgium.
I am as cold as she is! So let it keep her style but also adapt a little to mine. I leave it in the hands of artists!

And what are your hopes for the future path of the dress over time?

Already being alive! It’s a sentimental garment and I think it’s important to tell its story to my friends, that it’s yes a sentimental garment but it’s adapting to me and then it’s going to continue to live on in my family and in my circle, that it can endure, that it has value and that it’s going to have more and more value the longer I keep it, the longer I’m going to adapt it to the times and to the circumstances and also to the people because if I were to one day leave it to my children, they will be the ones who will be in charge of taking this part of the dress that is the family memory and passing on the value that it has, with words and with stories and with this process that you are doing.


Creating for a person means all this,
interpreting based on the detail brought
out by personality.

The design of the jacket was modified.
The client wanted her grandmother’s love of fashion and glamour to continue to be reflected in the garment while adapting to her needs.

Some parts were disassembled, inspired by the line that had a 1950s aesthetic, the sleeve was shortened to three-quarter length as an elegant quirk, and the collar was rounded and raised using reclaimed buttons from the faux pockets to add the missing buttonholes and make the garment more snug and protective in the neck.

From the lace trim that decorated the entire jacket, a fabric rose was made as a brooch that could be pinned on.

A collar is the second piece made from leftover parts from sleeve cuts combined with printed velvet from the 1980s and from a tailor shop that has been closed for nearly 20 years.

The color tones match the fabric, and the creation of this piece, which is an Abissi classic made for Reawaken, satisfies the customer’s desire for wraparound garments that can warm during the cold northern European winters.

As always, one of the signature details of the collar is the button, which is part of the personal collection of buttons collected over the years either as a family legacy or found in flea markets and antique stores.