In the third installment of The Handmade’s Tale, Fran McMullen takes Laura Macfehin behind the scenes of her Wellington-based clothing label Cry Cry Cry Clothing.
Full disclosure– the brilliant mind and and sewing skills behind Cry Cry Cry Clothing is my auntie! I was lucky enough to grow up in a family of very talented crafts-people and as a child I benefitted from their skill in the form of pretty clothes for myself and my dolls. For the past few years my auntie Fran has been sharing her sartorial skills with the world in the form of first Swonderful and now Cry Cry Cry clothing.
How did you start sewing clothes?
I have been sewing for myself since I was 12, this was extended to friends (and nieces), and the odd paying customer, while I was still at school. I studied garment construction at tech for a bit, but decided not to make a career in the fashion industry. Fast forward 25 years, Ginny and I decided to break out and open Swonderful, as an outlet for our pent-up creative energy. The intention was not to have a store which primarily stocked clothes, but that is how it evolved. People loved our take on vintage!
How did Cry Cry Cry come to be?
Can you describe the aesthetic for Cry Cry Cry?
What is the design and manufacture process?
I do very little sketching. Usually I knock an idea around in my head until I’m ready to draft a pattern. Often an awesome fabric will dictate the way a garment will go. A couple of toiles and voila! A whole heap of grading to do (I hate that bit). Then into the repeatinator. I should be so lucky. I am the repeatinator. I have my workroom in the spare room, overlooking Wellington airport and the wild south coast.
Where do you get your inspiration?
Inspiration comes largely from vintage garments. Instagram accounts like butchwaxvintage veraciousvintage, cheshirevintage and sibvintage fill my brain with beautiful images every day. I have a bit of a collection of old fashion mags from the 50s and 60s. I love pieces from Horrockses and Claire McCardell.
What is your favourite part of running your own business?
What is the hardest part?
How do you spend your time when you are not doing Cry Cry Cry work?
How can people find your clothes?