Threads Spotlight: Jade Stansbury brings Barbie to life

Anyone who owned a Barbie has wished for her clothes at one point in time.  For Jade Stansbury, that wish is turning into a reality for the upcoming Threads show.

Her collection is based around the 2000 movie “Lifesize,” a film in which a little girl’s botched wish brings her Barbie doll to life. Tyra Banks stars as Eve, and her wardrobe is filled with everything you would expect.

“I really liked the idea of a living doll,” Stansbury said. “It made me wonder, ‘How do dolls dress?’”

The junior already had the idea to base her collection around doll clothes and so her movie selection for Threads was simple.

“This movie contained everything I wanted to convey,” she said. “I also loved the movie when I was little.”

However, her inspiration is only loosely from the movie.

“My biggest inspiration came from the cover,” Stansbury said. “I loved the luxury of Eve’s satin dress and how rich she looked.”

To convey the luxurious, rich mood she had in mind, Stansbury used fabrics like silk satin. She also incorporated a lot of gold details.  For much of her collection, though, she stuck to the traditional Barbie colors, using a lot of red, pink and yellow, as well as what she called  “girlie colors and patterns.”

“My favorite piece is a black and white polka dot corset,” Stansbury said. “But I also love this black velvet dress because it’s so luxurious.”

Although this is her second year doing Threads, it’s her first solo collection.

“I did Threads for the first time last year with a partner and it was really fun, a great learning experience,” she said. “But this year I’m really excited to work alone and watch a collection that is purely mine walk down the runway.”

Stansbury has been working on her collection since September, although she started designing her collection over the summer when the theme for Threads was announced.

“It’s definitely a challenge,” she said about balancing Threads with her busy college life. “There are days when I feel overwhelmed. I have to attend meetings and events for my scholarship, I have homework in my other classes and I work three or four days a week.”

However, Threads isn’t something that she minds working on.

“I love sewing so it doesn’t really feel like work,” Stansbury said. “It’s my hobby so I get to use my free time for it.”

Her hobby is something she’s had since a young age, starting before she hit middle school.

“I used to have my friends pick out shirts and pants from options I drew,” she said. “I would put together outfits for them and when I was in seventh grade, a classmate and I pretended to start our own line and designed clothes in all of our classes.”

Holding on to her love of clothes even after her classmates had moved on to other hobbies, Stansbury still references her original seventh grade sketches for inspiration.

“It’s like I’ve come full circle,” she said. “From admiring fashion from afar to designing fashion for real.”

Photo by Christiana Kurtz