story by Torie Richardson
Dart: When did you decide that you wanted to make your prom dress?
Gorden:“I’ve kind of always wanted to make my prom dress. I’ve planned on it for a long time. I made my 8th grade graduation dress and from then I knew that I wanted to make my prom dress because my mom helped me a lot on the graduation dress. I was hoping one day I would be able to make a dress completely on my own so that’ll be this [prom dress].”
D: When did you start sewing?
G: “In 4th grade when I lived in Germany, my mom started teaching me how to sew. We had our own sewing room at that new house.”
D: When did you move here?
G: “Midway through freshman year.”
photos by Paige Powell
D: What’s the process of making any dress?
G: “The first thing I do is, on the dress form I’ll tape out the silhouette so I know how it’s going to look and usually I start from the skirt and work my way up and trying it on. Every stitch I do I try it on, make sure it fits and make adjustments from there”
D: Other than the dresses that you’ve created, do you sew often?
G: “Yeah, I make a lot of shirts that I wear to go out and for [Shawnee Mission] East’s Sadie’s [dance], I made two girls’ dresses for that too so…[I’ve made] a lot of dresses, a lot of shirts…a pair of shorts a couple of times.”
D: Do you have a designer who’s your inspiration?
G: “I’d say Alexander McQueen because I love the “out there” big stuff, but I toned it down because it’s prom and I’m not trying to look like a clown or anything but, yeah, I love the really “out there,” lots of details type look.”
D: What does it mean to you to be able to wear your prom dress to prom?
G: “I love it because one day I want to be doing formal dresses for celebrities, red carpet type looks, so it’s cool that I get to be the model for my first real fancy dress that I’m making. And people will see my dress and that I made it and stuff so that’ll be cool too.”
D: What do you want readers to know about you?
G: “I think that sewing is just as much of an art as painting and everything else. Because, paintings, you can see them hanging up on the wall and you can be like ‘oh she’s a good artist’ and stuff but like, you don’t really see someone who’s sewing and [say] oh, that’s an artist, you know?”