“There is an amazing feeling of artistic accomplishment when all the parts come together into one harmonious aesthetic. It's a connection with who you are and the elements you choose to express yourself visually. This is what making clothing is all about for me. It's like when a songwriter hears his first written notes from a voice or a baker who has practiced a recipe and nails it or a figure skater who exceeds her own expectations. I express my sense of art in clothing. I see things in color, shape and texture. I react to the touch of silk on my skin and my eyes are aware of how color combinations make me feel. My goal is to bring all of these intuitive notions to garments that are sized for larger women. If I can accomplish this then I have reached my goal.” – Stephen
As a young kid I was always drawing fashion sketches. Every Sunday the New York Times would arrive and I could not wait to see the new clothing sketches on page 3 advertisement from Lord & Taylor. I would spend hours copying each fashion until I got it right.
In 1976 it was time to enter college, of course I wanted to go to FIT, but my parents did not agree with my “passion for fashion” so I was shipped off to Business School. Instead of a major in business and a minor in finance, I majored in Art History to become a curator. Why? Because I could curate historic clothing exhibitions. I graduated in 1984 and started a career in historic preservation. Over a period of 10 years I handled over 500 historic garments.
To my good fortune, in 1991, I opened a retail gift shop filled with children’s books and dress-ups, music, painted furniture, humorous stationary, ceramics, and whimsical Christmas ornaments. It was a wonderful outlet for me to design and make little things for the store.
Then in 1997 I returned back to my childhood dream to become a fashion designer. It happened on a business trip to Indonesia. I was introduced to a small sewing company which cut and sewed out of their family compound. Two weeks before I retuned home, I made 15 jackets and 15 dresses. I was so excited! Within a month after my arrival back to the USA, I had sold every piece.
I quickly transformed a tiny room off the main section of my store into a clothing boutique (my dream was starting to become reality!). At first I did not know what plus sizes were and only made small, medium, and large. It was the generous women who came into my boutique and offered their opinions of my designs. I listened to their frustrations about sizing, nightmares about fabric choices and horror stories about clothing styles. So in 1998 I decided to make clothing for plus size women. With no training, I spent a good five years learning. I have developed clothing based on real bodies, real hips, real necklines, real front and back rises, real waists, real shirt lengths, real armholes and real sleeve lengths. Generous Fashions was born!
Generous Fashions was launched on the internet in 2003 with only 10 garments. After years of adjusting and tweaking my basic clothing collection came to perfection! Today, I continue to design fabirc and develop new color dyes. I work have branched out into producing batik fabric, tie dye and hand screen prints. I added rayon jersey, cotton knits and rayon lycra to my collection. I work with several pattern makers, 2 fabric cutters, several sewers, a fit model, print screen designer and 3 batikers. I love making clothing for the full figured women.
I am very lucky to have had my dream come true. Thanks to all the generous women who believed in me and supported my fashions. If you have any suggestions or comments please feel free to call or email .
All the Best!