May!

“…Here’s hoping May doesn’t suck as much as April.”

You know what? IT DIDN’T SUCK AS MUCH AS APRIL. Yessssss.

Team Dead & Buried was a bit all over the place during May – Elise moved out, Katia moved out (both because they were handed free studio spaces and that’s hard to beat in this economy) and we will miss them both immensely. Karlee moved in, then got offered a studio of her own almost next door to us after being on the waiting list at the Nicholas Building for almost a year, so she’s moving out too…

…how is this all not sucky bad news you ask? Well, for a starter we just handed some keys to Megan Webb who will be our new studio buddy, and we’ve been talking to a few other people about the last space available.

But the mood lifting has been mostly due to me being offered one of those once-in-a-lifetime jobs that came at EXACTLY the right time, and thus has lifted our spirits no end. I’m now out of the 3D rendering industry and am working 5 days a week in Sydney at a User Experience Design firm called Neo, run by my old best pal Michelle – who you might remember I made some green wedding shoes for last year.


^ that’s my new boss. What a babe/boss.

Her business has gone bananas and she’s hooked me up with a sweeeeet package to entice me to get on board. It’s been years since I was employed as an actual “designer” so it’s great to be back drawing, thinking and generally getting paid to have an opinion on everything, like I do naturally. This has removed the cloudy fog that was my future last month, and has given Dani and I some things to do / plan / save / setup for.

The renewed plan is for me to work 5 days and earn some respectable cash for the first time in maybe 8 years, and that will allow both of us to invest in some helpers and manufacturers to get our brands off the ground without it taking another 3 years of manual labour.


…something like this?

Dani M Designs and goodlyGOLD are in the process of getting a web-overhaul = new sites, new online stores, and I have a 2 stage process planned to get some ACTUAL SHOES MADE AND FOR SALE FOR GOD DAMN ONCE. More on that next month, but it’s pretty exciting.

We’ll be keeping the studio space humming over the next few months whilst I travel up and back, and then maybe… maybe… we’ll move to Sydney for a year, but we’ll cross that bridge when we come to it and we definitely wont be giving up our studio, we’ll just get a few more people in and fly back and forward like design jetsetters.

So, I’m in a hotel room now using their wifi and am planning an evening of blog trawling to gather some references for a new fashion label / shoe thing that is in the works, and also doing some sums to make sure I can deliver 3D printed visors to Christina Exie’s customers if they happen to order any! Eeek.


image from http://www.colourmedang.com/

Anyhoot, that’s the news in brief for anyone reading. There’ll be more to see this year now that we have a plan (and will soon have helpers to blog about things on our behalf) so lets all hope for D&B to return to it’s glory days of weekly 40+ photo posts!!

Madeline, if you’re reading this its been a year since you were here! What. The. Fuck. That’s too long. Come back for a visit.

Listening to : Goat, Cashmere Cat, Gucci Mane. over and over and over.

April = Ups and F*cking Downs

Hey there loyal readers (blog stats tell me it is still a few more people than our parents and Madeline and Hili that read this blog so I’ll keep talking as if it’s a captivated audience of 1000s)… April has certainly turned out to be the biggest rollercoaster of a month for me/us in hmmm… 7 years? Strangely enough EXACTLY 7 years ago, almost to the day from this year’s ups and downs, Dani and I got married and my previous business dissolved in a flash of rage and we found ourselves in one hell of a happy/sad headtrip. Seems April is cursed for us, we’d better watch out in April 2020… that sounds ominous.

I wont ramble on too much about the goings on of the month, but I do believe in open-book honesty, as that’s what this blog has always been about, so I dont want anyone out there who is / has / will go through tough times as an artist or creative person to think that it’s all smooth sailing here and we’re just posting up photos and exclamation marks when things go well, that’s what Instagram is for.

To start on a good note – WE WENT TO MERCEDES BENZ FASHION WEEK AND IT WAS COOL. Dani and I made the accessories for Christina Exie’s debut runway show, and it rocked the house. We spent the week soaking up some Sydney sun and helping Christina with the million and one tasks she had to do leading up to the show, we ate gelato and sushi, we arrived backstage 3 hours before the show and got to see the madness that goes on when trying to get 10 models styled, dressed and ready to walk a runway.

It was in no way without drama, there were some serious last minute hiccups to work around and I hope to do a post on all of the details of that adventure soon, but for now, here’s a quick preview of what we made and how it looked on the runway.


my 3D printed visors…

 
dani’s resin cast bangles…


the collection.

all images from zimbio.com

I was planning on doing a classic making of sort of post on these, but as I’m now thinking of going in to production with the visors asap I might wait a bit before I swing open the doors and give away all my trade secrets and intellectual property. Our friends at DI$COUNT have been ripped off royally recently by some dipshits in Sydney, so you cant really trust anyone these days it seems.

This was definitely one of the “ups” for April, and it was a great way to further our working relationship with Christina, meet a bunch of new people and get something seen outside of Melbourne.

That said, it lead me, and to a much lesser extent Dani, to crash out completely with post-event adrenalin and motivation loss. I’ve been trying to distract myself from the reality that I have somewhat ‘run out of steam’ since early January, and now that the outlook is on another year of hard work and determination all I want to do is pop into bed for a 6 month sleep.


this is what my plans for 2013 look like in my head at the moment.

All of our plans are so damned lofty that every now and then the weather changes or something sad happens and it’s hard not to just say “fuck it, I’m done with this shit”… but that’s the key to success. Knowing that those times will come and getting your ass off the couch and back in the saddle.

The sad event that came within 3 days of us arriving home from Sydney was the news that our friend and fellow creative hotshot-in-the-making Maya died of cancer at age 27. It’s making me choke up a little typing this so I’ll move on, but we are devastated to have lost her so early and hope that the good we can take from it is the motivation for us – and anyone reading this – to SEIZE THE DAY. Get out there and live your dreams as you have no idea when your time will be up.

Maya, you were awesome, and will never be forgotten.

So… ups and downs huh? How about having a new niece born 3 days after Maya passed? Is that up and down enough for you? Faaaaark.

We welcomed our new heartbreaker Olivia to the world on Monday and she is tiny and beautiful and quiet and possibly a redhead. I am in love already of course.

So… it’s now a public holiday, I’m in the studio typing away trying to get my mojo back, and hopefully…. hopefully, I’ll be blog posting this year with a new stream of stories about shoes and studios and manufacturing.

It seems the most financially sensible path for me (and Dani too) to take is for us to look at getting help with our brands so that we can break this exhausting cycle of trying to design, make and market everything all by hand. It works on a tiny turnover scale, but if we want to make these businesses actual “businesses” then that means working with a team, PR, marketing, bookkeeping, manufacture etc etc.

We just need to work out how to incorporate that into our Dead & Buried dream of integrated retail and manufacture, and how, when and where it will make sense for us to head in the next year or two – with the long term goal still being a home and life in ol’ Manhattan. Woo.

The other “up” for the month was getting to film a quick fashion film for Dani’s brand to launch her new resin jewellery range. We managed to get the brain-meltingly hot and cool Maximus Po to turn up at a photographic studio and dance her assssss off for an hour or two, whilst I directed and our friends Christian and Kik documented the whole thing. Below is a quick edit teaser film that I put together before Sydney… there’ll be a bigger and better and sexier one coming soon, once Christian and I get a chance to get back together and do some editing magic.

Dani M vs Maximus Po | Teaser Film from danimdesigns on Vimeo.

Oh, and one last thing, I made some postcards to give away whilst in Sydney and was lucky enough to have Jeannine Tan allow me to use one of her photos. She has a killer eye for photography and colour ranges that I am super envious of, so I am verrrry excited about working with her in the future to get the “look” for my brand just right. Go have a look at her site > www.jeanninetan.com

So that’s a wrap.
Here’s hoping May doesn’t suck as much as April.

 

March update…

Seems I / we don’t find the time to do much blogging these days – mainly because we dont have an internet connection at home – so here’s a dump of what’s going on. Ideally Dani or I will get an intern / assistant / PA this year and we can put them in charge of all this social media stuff……. not enough time!!

Rather than a big wordy story, lets cut straight to the pics :

Dani finished her collaborative project / art installation with Milly Flemming and got it all installed at the last minute at Craft Victoria for the Signature Style exhibition. We should get some profesh shots done, but for now here’s my iPhone snaps from the night.

  

Lots of porcelain, copper, enamel, silver and hard work.

3D printer has been working overtime – finally seeming like it’s worth all that $$.

I assisted Audrey make another collection of shoes, this time for Penthouse Mouse as part of LMFF. She arrived back in Melbourne from a 3 month holiday one week before the show started and explained to me her idea of ‘finding rocks that look like heels’…. of course I said ‘yeah, that’s going to take forever, why dont we just PRINT OUT A ROCK SHAPED HEEL’… and that’s what we did.

A quick briefing on what she wanted, an hour of her hovering whilst I nerded it up and 12 hours of print time (all settings on highest quality) = 2 rocks that work as heels.

She resin molded them and knocked up 3 pairs of shoes in 4 days.


Instagram photo of 2 pairs stolen from Bern. Soz Bern.

The other 3D projects that are on the go are accessories for Christina Exie’s debut runway show at Sydney Fashion Week in April.

Dani is making resin cast jewellery – for which I 3D modelled and scaled up an existing design of hers…

then she went on to tidy it up and prep it for casting

Audrey paid us back for all the assistance by being our resin casting intern for a few days…

sampling colours, getting things right…


and production begins!

I’m also making visors that have a lace / basketweave sort of design going on… but more on them when they’re actually done.


big ones, like this.

Oh, and you know what’s cool? When you need a replacement part or new filament holding spindle for your 3D printer and you can just PRINT IT OUT from files online… awesome.

… and lastly, not everything goes to plan, this is what happens when your object falls over 90% of the way through printing, so the extruder just keeps on pumping out plastic for 20 mins into the air. Kind of cool, kind of annoying.


… thats the object underneath there… booooo.

So much other stuff going on, Karlee has moved in to our old shop space and set up her tailoring business there (we might reopen in a ground level shop later this year) Amber and Katia both had work on show as part of LMFF, Elise got accepted in to RMIT honours, Yaz is having her work stocked at Craft Vic, I went to soundwave, I made a corporate video for LOTS of cash to fund my shoe samples, I’ve also been helping out on Laura Imbruglia’s filmclip which is a Teen Wolf inspired masterpiece….

Fuck, that’s enough for now… see you round.

Listening to : Ghost (best band at Soundwave by far) and Flume and Cashmere Cat << highly recommended, have a listen. Next level tunes.

 

3D print time

hey gang, I have (literally) 10 mins until the last tram leaves so i’ll be brief.

The 3D printer is WORKING LIKE A DREAM. I’ve been able to print out various trinkets, test objects, bits of junk… and now finally some real objects.

Below are some images that I’ve been taking as I print various things out. I haven’t been documenting this stuff as thoroughly as the shoemaking as 50% of the things I print are shit, or I stop them half way etc. These are some of the more successful attempts.

First prints of 1:1 heels


I have modelled up a last in 3D studio MAX (and also another better version in Rhino) and this is one of the many heel shapes that I have been working on. This shows my plans for an interlocking cantilever / wedge component that allows me to have more severe angles on the front edge of the heel and retain strength.

As I have the shoe last modelled, it’s easy to print out mini 1:2 scale shoes!

the rough textured ‘cage’ on this model is the support structure that the printer creates to hold up thin or overhanging components. It snaps off easily as it’s not actually attached to the object, just sitting 1mm away from it all over.


This is one of my ideas for a heel / wedge with a cavity. Much easier to test this way than making one from cork.

I’ve also printed out some even smaller 1:4 scale shoes. These will probably evolve into keyrings to come free with the shoes when they’re for sale.


A collection of bits and pieces on my shelf…


This pic shows a little of how the software saves materials. It prints a ‘shell’ of the object, then fills it with a set percentage of volume, in this case 10%, so the final object is more like a honeycomb filled easter egg than a solid plastic chunk. You can set it to do 100% infill, but in most cases other than a structural part that’s just a waste of time and resources.

Today I printed out a 1:1 insole shape from my 3D model to test for fit.

It looks like I need to adjust some curves across the bottom plane of the last so the insole isnt touching on the high spot at the ball of the foot, but the scale is correct. woooo. Next up is a snug fitting insole, then from there it’s pretty easy to make up a snug fitting platform… and that’s where the crazy stuff starts happening.

 


Nerdstation.


another shot of the 10% infill idea + this one has a ‘raft’ at the bottom that makes the model stick to the base more evenly.

…and lastly, some actual prototypes for a local design firm, printed out for client presentations.
I’ll be selling print time soon, at something like $50 an object, unless its massive, then that’ll be $100. The price DOESN’T include me doing any 3D modelling, it just involves me receiving your print-ready STL file, setting it up to print at the most efficient settings, and then tidying it up at the end + plastic used.

If’ you’re interested, let me know.

Next non-shoe project up is making / printing some accessories for Christina Exie’s fashion show in Sydney! We’ll be up there for fashion week, swanning around, being scenesters.

ROCK ON.

Go Eloise!

Our pal Eloise has had a write up today in the Design Files, which means (without exaggerating) something like 30,000 people will have heard about her new brand Rapp as of today!

We were very happy to have been able to stock her scarves in our pop up store over summer, but alas, the store is packed up again for the autumn months whilst we regroup and restock with killer goodies. Look out for another Dead & Buried pop up this winter somewhere… maybe even on ground level this time instead of hidden 3 floors up!!

If you want to buy her scarves (which you should) head to her shop here >> http://rrrapp.bigcartel.com/

3D printed records!

Slightly off topic, but fucking inspiring none the less…

http://www.instructables.com/id/3D-Printed-Record/

one day I’ll be able to make shoes AND release my stoner rock albums on vinyl in the one object! haha…

 

Runway Show Screengrabs

Hey peeps, I took some screengrabs of the TV show footage and made up a mini gallery for any of you who didn’t get to see the show live to air. I have heard that it’s available on the internets through less-legal modes of acquirement, but I’m not silly enough to provide links to that on this here official website.

Check out the GALLERY here

Exie! She Won! The secret is out…

Ok, after a MASSIVE few months here at D&B I have finally put aside some time to get back to what we all love around here… long winded posts about shoe making!

I’ll start with the big news in case anyone missed it – I made the shoes for Christina Exie’s collection as a finalist in Project Runway Australia and last night she was declared the winner! (I’ll stop with the exclamation marks now as they’ll get tiresome) … she wins a buttload of stuff, cash, a car, fabric and also the oppurtunity to show a collection at Sydney Fashion Week early next year, so providing she is still in Australia and not whisked away to international stardom you should all keep an eye out for that.

http://www.smh.com.au/entertainment/tv-and-radio/luck-lies-and-late-nights-project-runway-winner-reveals-secrets-20121218-2bkct.html

So, as promised to a few people, here’s the lowdown on how / what Dani and I did during October when we kind of dropped completely off the radar for all friends and family. This will be a long one, so get comfy.

We met Christina in our studio earlier this year when she was looking for studio space, she is friends and has exhibited with Katia who has a spot in our room. None of the spaces we had available were the right size for what she wanted to do – which turns out was to create a collection of some sorts in the hope that she would get to exhibit it after Project Runway was over… as she was eliminated towards the end and only brought back in at the last moment as a wildcard entry.We kept in touch as she seemed to have a great eye for style (and she liked my scary black shoes) so we tossed around the idea of working together in the future…

… and then at the start of November she emailed me to ask if I was interested in making her some shoes to go with her collection, even though it was the end of the year. Thus began stage one.


We discussed ideas, she wanted elastic sided boots, and this was the closest design I had to what she wanted. Luckily, being a designer herself she appreciated that I had ideas of my own and she wasn’t asking me to just make a knock off of something she saw in a shop.


This is the old prototype that we looked at and decided to work from…


So I sewed up a quick black version, glued on a heel and then started with my Photoshop skillllzzz…


et voila! As requested, a “virtual” black boot, 40mm platform, 5 inch (125mm) heel for maximum runway model awesomeness, the inclusion of a nickel buckle as per her collection and a few ideas of how we could include the red and beige that featured in her clothes. I added in the chrome front piece as it seemed to need something to break up the big fat front section.

After we had agreed on a style, she had received word that she should be putting together a collection ‘just in case’ she was needed back on the show, and that’s when things got serious.
I got cracking on production of 10 PAIRS OF SHOES that were due in 3 to 4 weeks. Ouch. Oh, and we didn’t know what sizes to make them as she wasn’t at the stage of choosing models. Grrreeeat.

I made some calls and my best fashion pal Keita at Pronto Productions (who produced the runway shows for MSFW this year) let me know that most Melbourne models are an 8 or 9, so we made the executive decision to just make 8, 8.5 and 9s and hope that the models had squishable toes or thick socks……


stage one… make up a test pair.  12 October.
Realise your pattern is wrong, remake.
Repeat 5 times or more.
Vow to be more careful when designing patterns and less adventurous.
Ignore that and continue to make shoes that “look good” no matter how hard they are to sew together.


Good ol’ leather detail photos (its been a while!)


realising that zips, suede, full grain leather and linings are hard to join all in one place…


but we got there… hellllooooo black boot #1.


A quick mockup to send photos to Christina. Happy comments received, everyone is happy.
Little did i know what was in store for me over the next 3 weeks….


After getting to this stage, and making ANOTHER test pair to further resolve the pattern I had an inkling that sewing all of these myself was a bit of a recipe for disaster. I sew ok, but I’m slllloowwww, whereas Emma Greenwood is a sewing guru and loves a good challenge, so I proposed she sew them for me at a nice and rewarding hourly rate whilst I got to work on other things.


… stuff like this was doing my head in. Straps meeting zips, things turning inside out. Its a mind bender.


the chosen 3 sizes all taped up for making a full set of patterns. If i was passing the sewing on to Emma I had to do a good, clear job of all patterns, none of my usual “front bit” naming conventions and “this bit longer than the other side” random notes.


… being much smarter than me, Emma also dropped a casual “will you be cutting the leather out?” and I was all “yeah, no worries, I’ll do it tonight…”

…4 hours later I was done. Thats half a day cutting things. Jeezus.
As you can see I had to go for maximum hide yield rather than the preferred symmetry and ‘only the nice bits’ rule, hence some of these shoes being a bit old-person-wrinkly in parts.


all sewn up and delivered…


…and 3 test “first pullovers”. Happy days.


Look at that sewing! Fuck, she is good. 20 uppers sewn in one day, neat as a pin. Worth every dollar.


The uppers start to pile up. Each one of these shoes took a few hours to last, and then there was the matter of me only having ONE SET OF LASTS, so I could only make 3 pairs at a time, then I had to pull them off the lasts and start again.


… another lifesaver from Emma was the introduction of heat set toepuffs. Being a hack with no formal experience or training I just make things up and didnt really know how to get or use this stuff. She showed me how, it works perfectly and takes 30 seconds. Amazing.


Alas, by this stage my 3D printer had not yet arrived, so I had to make my platforms the old skool way.
Lots of measurements, MDF, cork and PVA = two master forms to make resin from.
Those compound curves are a BITCH to get to work, but it worked out in the end.


I love PVA. It’s so handy. Filling up gaps here…


so with a whole night’s work silicone moulding this is what I got.


… and once that pink thing is filled with Polyurethane, you get production ready bits!


Dani snuck a sneaky shot of me scowling at a shoe. All of the other photos I’m scowling even more and look like a right grumpy bastard, so this one will do.


Thanks to my wifey’s connections we got a stamp made up at the last minute of my logo.
Have I shown this off before? Dunno, if not, there it is. Courtesy of NICK LEWIS.

oh, and I have a website sort of up now too > http://www.stevenphillips.com.au/


Here’s my #1 girl working away at some stupid hour. By this stage I was a tired panicked mess, Dani stayed to help me through another 12 hour day.


… she wrapped platforms and got hiiiiiigh on glue.


heels starting to stack up on the shelf…


DIY cast resin taps for the bottom of the heels. This resulted in Dani getting a 2 week rash on her arms.
She is allergic to resin fumes. ooooops. :(


Stamped stuff… looking legit.


Hardcore resin supplies. Audrey and I lament ever getting in to resin casting.
We spend $200 a time at Barnes (casting supplies) and $300 a time at Leffler (leather) like it’s no big thing.
We have discussed opening a shop called “Leather ‘n Resin”.. it would indeed be lucrative, but mostly because the name rolls off the tongue so easily.


Outsoles pre-cut. I used Topy to make them as non-slip as possible. Leather is nice, but a bit scary when you’re walking down a gloss white runway on 5″ heels.


Making shoooooooeeeees…..


So many shoes.


Here’s a quick shot I took at midnight the day before the deadline day….


Resin workstation.


Finished models on the bench.


More to go yet… cork inserts for comfort.


more done…


Production line, the day of the deadline…


Faster! Faster!

So ONE NIGHT before the deadline (by then she knew she was back in the final 4) I was madly glueing and stamping the final shoes and had entered a total state of tired / wired delerium. I dropped them off at her house, she was just as tired and spaced out as me and we crossed our fingers that her clothes and my shoes would look good together… and nothing would break.


so at 9pm, the night before the show, here we are…. 20 pairs all ready to go.


I wanted to take more photos but honestly I was texting Christina at 10 min intervals with “almost, gimme a minute” then “yep, heading out the door” then “yep, ACTUALLY heading out the door now”…

Dani and I got to go to the filming of the Runway show which was pretty fun, but we were so tired and nervous that neither of us got to pay too much attention to the clothes, our eyes were on the shoes thinking “shoes please dont break, dont fall over girls” over and over again. The show was a success, and as we know now SHE WON THE DAMN SHOW.

Stupidly Dani and I went to the wrong venue and missed the after party (derrrrrrrrr) but all is well that ends well, and this has ended as well as it possibly could have.

So what’s next you ask? SLEEEEEP and LOTS OF IT.

Our pop up shop is still open, we’re selling stuff right up until xmas eve, so come on in and buy cool stuff.
It will make me happy.

January plans you ask?

Making lots of stuff with my new 3D printing NerdStation…

Crazy stuff like this 6″ heel. Fuck yes, that is cool.

and finally doing some more work on this bucket of bolts, that is now registered.

Plans are to lower it so it scrapes on the road, paint it matte charcoal grey instead of green and get some whitewall tyres…

kind of like this, cool huh?
oh, and get ready for Black Sabbath concert that I have tickets for. Yesssssssssss.

So, that completes another blog entry showing that I am a confusing mix of heavy metal bogan /redneck, and sexy shoe aficionado.

Keeps things interesting I guess….

Until next time – MERRY CHRISTMAS! THANKS FOR READING! COME TO OUR SHOP!!!

http://www.quickanddead.com/

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

 

 

The Quick and The Dead II – now open!!

Howdy,

It seems that in amongst all the shop opening admin we’ve been up to lately I forgot to update this here website with some pretty important information… Our pop up shop is open again!!

We had a mini launch party a week or so ago and now we’re open every Wednesday – Saturday 11am – 6pm from now until Christmas. As with last year’s store we have LOADS of under-$100 goodies for christmas gifts, as well as a bunch of more high-end fashion things for you to buy for yourself.

The pop up site is here > www.quickanddead.com < and it has a link to our online store, shop from home!

Thanks to everyone who has helped out so far, it’s been a great start and we’re only 2 weeks in.

Flinders Lane Shopping Night

Hey gang, we’re participating in the first annual Flinders Lane Shopping Night this THURSDAY, November 22.
Come up to see us for a beer if there are any left, 10% off all stock in store and a last chance to have a look before we revamp the space for our Christmas Pop Up shop!

Here’s the official info from the press release. Special thanks goes to Dana Lenko for organising it all!

Flinders Lane and its surrounds are the darlings of Melbourne’s lauded laneways.

Home to our most beloved independent retailers, designers and creative minds—it is where the lifeblood of Australian fashion and the forefront of independent design pools.

To celebrate this unique, creative community, retailers have united for the very first time to create an exciting new event—the Flinders Lane Shopping Night, to be held on Thursday November 22, 2012 from 5pm to 9pm. On this day local retailers will be staying open for a late night shopping experience with each store running their own exclusive offers.

Here’s a Facebook event link if you want to share it around

http://www.facebook.com/events/542276039122632/