Just in time for the start of the fall season, the local artists’ village gallery will feature fashion designer Suzen Brackell during the month of September.
The cooler temperature may motivate to put away summer clothes and look for something colorful and stylish to refresh last year’s fall wardrobe.
Brackell is the founding member of the Village Gallery and has exhibited his sartorial art there for over 10 years. Her indomitable optimism and belief that artists can help each other have guided the Village Gallery’s influence and permeates the atmosphere.
Her iconic fashion style reflects her philosophy that clothes can be sexy and comfortable; elegant and functional. Her fabrics are easy to care for and with classic black pants and shoes her tops go from day to night easily. She believes every woman deserves to feel fabulous by owning something handmade and one of a kind.
The Brackell line offers sets with a matching top, waistcoat, capri pants, mask and even scrunchie. Her kids told her “The scrunchies are back, mom!” So Brackell got to work sewing these hairpieces in every color imaginable. Colorful fabric bottle holders with matching masks allow hikers to hike the trails in style. Brackell also offers scarves and other accessories.
Since the COVID-19 outbreak, Brackell has more time to take on creative and labor-intensive projects. Immersed in her vast collection of fabric remains, she chooses a palette of colors and assembles them, giving new life to the material by recycling.
She says “By reusing and reusing everything we have, we can save the planet.” From this patchwork she creates tops that can be worn either side in front. Some have brighter summer colors on one side and more subdued fall colors on the other.
Working three or four days at a time without the usual interruptions allowed Brackell to immerse himself creatively.
She explains; “Fear and creativity cannot occupy the same space and the same time, so I leave fear behind to be creative. In response to the global pandemic, Suzen is designing a top that will incorporate a mask that can be worn as a turtleneck when not in use. To accommodate the Arizona heat and add sex appeal, the mask / collar will attach at the front and back and be open at the shoulders. In keeping with Brackell’s sense of flair, the mask will add color and style to the outfit.
The Village Gallery of Local Artists is always accepting applications for new members. The gallery is open daily from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and is located at 6512 State Route 179 in the village of Oak Creek. For more information, visit sedonalocalartists.com or by phone at (928) 284-1416.