Monday, September 15, 2014

Bright Star, a new collection! In the making: a story of its humble beginnings!

To all my dear and lovely followers, I'm sorry that I am never on here as much as I ought to be. I find that between my regular work, my commission work,  other design work, and trying to keep up with life in general makes my absence from blogging pretty extensive. At this point, my blog posts are about as rare as a Pokemon sighting! 

If you're ever having trouble getting in contact with me, remember you can reach me a lot more readily here:

If you're looking to support our super talented friend and illustrator, Flor//Coffeshere, you can find her here:

Today, I would like to take the time to introduce you to the new collection that Pop Princess and our talented illustrator, Coffeshere (aka: Flor Lopez), have been working on entitled: Bright Star! This print started back in October 2013 and was not completed until June 2014~ many months of Flor's dedication and hard work went into the creation of this print, which I think is even more beautiful than the last one we created together, Starry Garden. 

Where does the name "Bright Star" come from? 

Bright Star
Bright star, would I were steadfast as thou art—
         Not in lone splendour hung aloft the night
And watching, with eternal lids apart,
         Like nature's patient, sleepless Eremite,
The moving waters at their priest like task
         Of pure ablution round earth's human shores,
Or gazing on the new soft-fallen mask
         Of snow upon the mountains and the moors—
No—yet still steadfast, still unchangeable,
         Pillow'd upon my fair love's ripening breast,
To feel for ever its soft fall and swell,
         Awake for ever in a sweet unrest,
Still, still to hear her tender-taken breath,
And so live ever—or else swoon to death.

 What is the story behind Bright Star? 

The story behind this one is a little more difficult for me to talk about as it’s only been a year this summer since it happened. Someone that I loved very deeply was killed suddenly in a car accident after returning home for the first time in many years after serving in the Marines, right before we were supposed to see each other. His death affects me more than I have words to express. His name was Kyle Bankes, and he was simply one of the most beautiful souls, a person who touched everyone who ever met him, who lived and loved without fear. This print is for him.

This print was inspired by the time we shared together, our memories captured in time beneath glass domes, a still like photograph kept close in my heart. It’s in memory of the way his eyes would light up when he smiled, how the warmth of his hands felt in mine that made time stop, or the sound of his laughter filling a room; how he always said our ties, the red string of Fate, would never be cut. This is for when I remember in my heart that I will love you in this life and the next, and believe we will meet again some day. 

I wanted to make something in his memory, something that would soothe the ache of missing him just a little, and something I could hold onto forever. More importantly I wanted it to be in memory of his beautiful soul that touched everyone he knew so deeply, and in honor of his family and friends who loved him. 

 How did you get the idea for the Bright Star print itself?

Like a lot of my ideas (the good ones anyway!) I tend to dream about them, see them fully and complete in my head, seeing every detail and shape as I would like them to be. I knew that I wanted the print to be in honor of his memory, that I wanted it to be enchanting and magical, with figurines placed beneath glass domes and terrariums as if there moments were captured in time, frozen, to be held on in one's heart forever. I asked Flor if the focus could be on two figures, centered, as they embraced in a waltz surpassing time and space, caught in a memory that would represent the time Kyle and I spent together.

I've never considered my illustrations a strong suit, that I'm simply not capable of getting what I see out of my head and onto paper, but I knew that just like last time, Flor would be able to take the image right out of my head and with her amazing talent, hard work, and determination put it into something beautiful and perfect. So with only a written description of what I imagined and this scribble below, Flor set to work...

And with these scribbles, the Bright Star print slowly began to form... here are Flor's WIPs images over months and months of hard work. (She never fails to amaze right? I can't believe one person can hold so much talent!) We started off with rough sketches and begin to work from there, picking and choosing the elements we liked the best...

And then it began to come together... here is the first rough sketch! 

Which slowly began to form into this, with Flor painstakingly beginning to outline each element, one by one...

And finally, after 9 long months... Flor put the finishing touches on the Bright Star and we were left with an absolute master piece. Each detail had been carefully illustrated and shaded by hand, making sure that each individual element was fully fleshed out and a work of art all on its own. Her work speaks for itself. It is simply breath taking. 

We were eventually able to have our fabric printed just in time to make a sample for the My Lolita Style event in Tijuana, Mexico in June 2014! The details looked even more amazing in person! 

The fabric was created into the Bright Star sample for the fashion show, which Flor herself wore on the runway and looked absolutely stunning in... We were even able to send a Bright Star Garment to Misako Aoki!

 It took Flor several more weeks and months to finalize and finish all the colorways for Bright Star, which you can see below, a testament to her talent and perseverance!

In conclusion, a thank you...

First and foremost, I would like to say thank you to each and everyone, friends, family, and all of you out there for supporting the Pop Princess brand! It can be a tough path to follow when you’re trying to turn dreams into reality but all of the support, encouragement, and smiling faces I encounter make feel like it’s possible and not to give up!
I would like to especially thank my talented, lovely, and amazing friend and illustrator, Flor (aka: Coffeshere), who teamed up with the brand in 2013. She works incredibly hard to make the most beautiful prints for Pop Princess and I honestly can’t express my thanks enough. 
 ...And one last loving memory of Kyle...
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