Local Women: Celeste Hude

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From growing up watching her mother and grandmother work with lace and linen, Celeste Hude grew passionate about hand-crafted fabrics. She has a shop, the Victorian Tailor, set up inside the Maple Street Mall in downtown Mason where she sells clothing. You can visit her online to find out more at www.victoriantailor.com. Q: Tell me how you got into working with antique linen and lace. A: It all started when I was 9 years old. My mother was a beautiful seamstress, and my grandmother was a milliner at one time. Both of them took old garments and remade them. They made blankets and draperies with gorgeous fabric, and they would create wearable garments. I grew up watching and learning that. We were always antiquing, going to sales and picking up old fabrics and lace. I started incorporating those pieces into my clothing. Q: How did you find out about the Maple Street Mall to set up shop? A: I live right down the street, and there was a sign in the window accepting vendors. I was unemployed at the time and scrambling to figure out what to do. This became available, and I decided to do my dream full-time. I’ve been working on this for 30 years while my children were growing up. I rented this space because of unemployment, so it was a window of opportunity open to me, and I’ve been here for three and a half years now. Q: What about antique fabrics appeals to you? A: I like the fact that someone labored intensively over that piece of lace either knitting or crocheting — whatever it took to make that piece, they worked on it with their own hands. That is a lost art, and you will never see it again. Preserving it in a respectful way to honor that person, that’s what I like to do. Q: What kind of products do you sell? A: I make very practical clothing with linen, silk and lace. I make tank tops, camisoles, bloomers that are fun to wear, bags and purses, and I make them all in such a way that you can wear them now. I also have a website which was published six months ago. It was the hardest thing I’ve ever done, and it’s still a work in progress. My dream was to get it running and reach a wider audience. I want to be a representation for women and for this type of work I do. It speaks to the environment, too, as a way of being green and preserving history. It’s what I am — whatever I do in life, I always come back to this.
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Tags: Local Women, Maple Street Mall, Victorian Tailor