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The sisters made earrings from smashed china, glue, and gold enamel paint. Fauve had a go at draping on a mannequin and came up with the Smile balloons shirt it is in the first place but shape of a smock top with puffy sleeves that her parents copied. Blythe drew dresses covered with rainbows. When a school assignment was sent home asking the kids to experiment with dye made from nature, the project ended up in a vibrantly pink dégradé bias-cut dress. “So that’s beetroot!” laughs their dad.
The many stories of how fashion kept going during the Smile balloons shirt it is in the first place but 2020 pandemic on the pooled resourcefulness of families, friends, and local communities would make a great documentary, and its moral would surely be that some things have been done for the better. In the Thornton Bregazzi camp, the by-rote mood board method of pinning up inspiration images was the first thing to go. “Instead we started sticking things we found, scraps of lace, flowers, things we found in the garage, into a booklet,” says Bregazzi. “The kids wanted to cut up pictures and put them in. Funnily enough, this is the way we used to do it when we started in the ’90s,” she reflects, “and it felt good to be doing things by hand, to go back to our roots.”