Back in 2006, while working on some personal projects in my studio, I decided to take an antique tablecloth to the studio to see what I could do with it. The first shoot I just suspended the table cloth, and had the model stand behind it. But I really liked the way the lace revealed yet covered the model.
Thinking it would drape into an interesting dress, I brought it to another shoot a few months later. For this shoot I pinned the tablecloth around the model, forming a bat-winged dress. The biggest problem was the length of the tablecloth. What to do with all that extra fabric? If it had been in the back it could be a train, but it caused a problem in the front, until I thought of the idea of mermaid tails.
With the mermaid theme in hand we took the tablecloth and a third model to the Lost Coast for a shoot on the rocks.
The biggest problem with my “dress” was that it locked the arms and legs into one position. I would have liked to cut it to make it into more of a real dress, but seeing as it was an antique family heirloom, that wasn’t possible.
So I went onto Ebay and started searching for a similar tablecloth. I eventually found one and fitted it into a dress for a model I had just started working with. And that is when the curse started. Before we could schedule the shoot, the model went incommunicado. The next model I suggested it to moved out of the area before we could shoot it. The next model flaked, and so on. It got to where I was hesitant to even mention the dress project because it seemed a sure way to make the model disappear.
Finally though, last month I had the opportunity to shoot it. I took the model out to one of my favorite spots, a large rock outcropping off of Wild-Mad Road. We were rewarded with a beautiful sunset for the backdrop, and even though the tempature was in the low 50s, the model, Tyler, did a great job of posing while fighting off the shivers. Tyler announced she was moving to Oregon for college two weeks after this shoot, but at least we got this one done.