As a child, Boston-area artist Amy Rosenstein Lassman danced, skated, and sewed. As an adult, she earned a master's degree in Dance Movement Therapy from New York University. She tells us, "I have always found creative expression to be essential to my well-being."
Today, Lassman expresses her creativity, and helps others do so as well, though her innovative studio Adar Design, where she creates wearable art, accessories and home design textiles. Among her favorite materials to work with are "soft, diaphanous silks, sturdy woolens, knobby tweeds and sumptuous velvet naps, in colors that range from subtle cream linens to eye popping dupioni silks."
"I have always loved the tactile qualities of fabrics," she says. "Designing accessories allows me to work with these items and let the designs emerge from the materials themselves. I am not tied to mass production of identical items. I know my clients select pieces that they feel express their own aesthetic and they enjoy adding the color and flair of the accessories to their outfits."
One way Lassman helps clients add flair is by creating unique bags that "each have their own personalities." Clients often bring outfits to her studio to inspire the design of a custom bag for a special occasion or even for everyday wear.
"Over the years I have developed several patterns that I tend to use because they fulfill the needs of the women who carry them," she says. "There is no limit to what can be done. Each new client, each new fabric will inspire a unique design."
In addition to bags, and other accessories including scarves and book covers, Lassman creates textiles inspired by the Jewish faith.
"The joy in creating a tallit (prayer shawl) or a chuppah (wedding canopy) is indescribable," she says. "I have the privilege to be an integral part of a joyous occasion such as a wedding, Bar or Bat Mitzvah, or special life cycle event. A cover for a challah on the Sabbath or a special bag to hold matzoh on the Passover Seder table will be used for years and take on a traditional life of its own. A well thought out piece of Judaica can unite families and spark a tradition." (see above)
Lassman recalls a recent wedding she designed textiles for, during which her client gave her a wedding gown belonging to the mother of the bride and the wedding suit from the mother of the groom.
"I incorporated fabric and trims from both family treasures to create an heirloom chuppah," Lassman says. "With the three couples' names embroidered in the cloth, and room for many more names, this chuppah will no doubt cross the continent and perhaps the globe for future weddings."
You can look for Lassman's designs at the next local arts and craft show, or find her pieces online and at several Boston area stores, including Clever Hand Gallery in Wellesley, Kolbo Fine Judaica in Brookline, and The Sign of The Dove (new location to be announced soon).
Watch a demo of how it works!