Interview with Etsy Artist
About Alisa Koysman: "I am a young Manhattan based bridal designer and have been making clothing ever since the age of seven, even before I was allowed to use a needle. I am a graduate of the Fashion Institute of Technology where my specialization was Intimate Apparel. Before venturing out on my own, I worked in merchandising for large retail companies such as Coach, Ross Stores, Le Mystere, and Gilt Groupe. I personally make each veil and work one on one with brides for custom veil, birdcage, and fascinator orders. Only the finest quality products are used, such as French lace, Swarovski crystals, and silk thread and piping. All lace and piping is attached by invisible hand stitching. I don't use harsh machine stitching or glue that are unfortunately all too common in commercially produced veils."
Right around this time, I complemented a friend of ours on her beautiful knit bolero. She showed me the Etsy shop she bought it from. This was my first time hearing about and seeing Etsy. I was hooked and right away realized this is the perfect community for me to flourish my new bridal dream.
People say that everything happens for a reason, and I feel truly blessed that everything happened when and how it did. I never thought I would be able to have my own store, especially full of customers who appreciate handmade quality and design!
Other artists and designers on Etsy make it what it is as well. Promoting each other through treasuries and blogs, teams, and word of mouth, saying hello and sharing compliments to "competitors"... I doubt this happens with brick and mortar shops. We have a real community here.
As I mentioned earlier, my life was always involved in fashion. Although I taught myself to sew by making outfits for my dolls at about five years old, the need for it was in my genes. My great grandmother was an evening-wear designer and fed her family through World War II while in evacuation in Uzbekistan, by sewing saris for the locals in exchange for grain. At seven, I made my first real garment, a pink, stretch miniskirt, with burgundy velvet lacing up the side. Unfortunately, my parents thought it was a bit risqué for a seven year old.
Lately, I've been implementing vintage laces into veils, and perfecting my dyeing processes for these, as it's more complicated than usual. Sometimes I feel as if I need a scientist in addition to other professionals I wish I had at my disposal (administrator, accountant, IT...). I am also very inspired by re-embroidering shoes with lace and crystals.