Larissa Sehringer: Through clothes you can tell a story and express yourself


Elena Erdekian

[monoslideshow id=”183″]Photos courtesy of Larissa Sehringer

Meticulously cutting and stitching pieces of fabric, freshman Larissa Sehringer has had a love for fashion design ever since she was a young child. Unlike many people with an interest in fashion, Sehringer designs and sews much of her own clothing.

“I just love clothes in general or the feeling after you’ve sewn something. It’s really cool to realize that, ‘woah, I’ve actually done this,’” Sehringer said.

Mostly self-taught through books and practice, Sehringer picked up her hobby of designing and creating clothing on her own when she was very young. She took sewing lessons at Helen’s Handbags in Natick, and her grandmother also gave her some basic design advice.

“[My grandmother] was a really talented seamstress. When she was little, she didn’t buy her own clothes, she sewed them,” Sehringer said.

Sehringer frequently gets an idea for her projects from different inspirations such as fabrics, random objects, designers, colors or places.

To create a piece, Sehringer usually first creates an imitation of the design out of muslin, an unbleached, loosely woven fabric. This allows her to determine how the final design will turn out, and if she makes any mistakes, she can fix them on the real fabric.

From there, Sehringer creates an original pattern for the piece and then sews and hems the final fabric using a sewing machine and various other tools and materials such as seam paper, pin magnets, fabric scissors and embellishments.

Sehringer obtains the materials for her projects from Fabric Place Basement, Mood Designer Fabrics and M&J Trimming. She has also bought fabric when she has traveled to destinations such as Denmark and Paris and has received fabric as gifts from friends and family.

To reduce the possibility that a garment won’t fit properly, Sehringer has to determine the correct measurements for the project before she begins sewing.

“You always have to leave seam allowance because once you sew, you have less space,” Sehringer said.

Sehringer has created and designed her own dresses, bags, blankets, hats, pants, pajamas and shorts.

“I wear all of these clothes. I don’t sell them, but I want to eventually,” Sehringer said.

Last summer, Sehringer also started a fashion blog called “From the Runway to the Streets,” in which she expresses her interest in fashion.

“In my free time, I like to blog about anything that I find that’s interesting,” Sehringer said.

Sehringer’s inspirations include Marc Jacobs and Vivienne Westwood. She also admires Blake Mycoskie for donating pairs of shoes to people in need. Sehringer hopes to help a similar cause in the future.

Sehringer’s dream has always been to attend Parsons The New School for Design or the Fashion Institute of Technology, which are both located in New York City.

“[Fashion design] benefits me by letting me express myself, supplying me with a creative outlet and giving me access to a world where everyone has their own style, whether they decide to call it fashion or not,” Sehringer said. “Through clothes you can tell a story and express yourself, even if it is just a pair of sweatpants.”