The biggest and brightest news around here at Grain is that Claire Beaumont is back! Claire was our first intern ever and worked with us for over a year as a student. She recently graduated and we were lucky enough to convince her to come join us here at Grain as our first official employee. Claire has been working with us for over a month now and we don't know what we ever did without her. Read below to get to know her a bit more. Bienvenida Doña Clara!
Q: You just finished your Bachelor of Arts degree at The Evergreen State College in Olympia, WA. Can you tell us about the school as well as what you studied there?
A: Yes, Evergreen is a bit different which is what attracted me. The school is built around interdisciplinary studies, encouraging multiple subjects to share coursework and projects. Rather than earning grades, classes are completed with personal and faculty evaluations of the quality and development of your work during the term. My inquiry in sustainability and alternative modes of production led my studies through a range of subjects from farming and business through apparel design. The structure of Evergreen allowed me to tie my studies into a degree I'm calling Sustainable Practices in Textiles, Design + Business.
Q: Besides working at Grain, you have many other creative interests having to do with fashion and textiles. Can you tell us a little about the work you are doing in your spare time?
A: I'm working on constructing responsible, durable garments and trying to figure out how to make them reasonably affordable. Making clothing is my pride and joy and I just keep building my skills in my free time. My next undertaking is pattern-making! I would love to do some small scale production with artisans in Guatemala. That weaving... ooof! And then I'll tackle batik. I'm really excited about batik and painting my own fabric with natural dyes. I'm going to spend a lot of time harvesting and boiling plants this summer!
Q: What do you see yourself doing creatively 5 years from now? How about 10?
A: Oh boy, I'd like to be self-sufficient and helping others achieve the same in the Pacific Northwest - making dye gardens, teaching people to sew, hopefully running my own line of clothing successfully, growing my own food successfully. What else do I need?
Q: Along with being the go-to model for Grain, you have some other modeling experience in your past. Something to do with luxury cars? Do tell...
A: Alright, alright, you got me - I was a cupid in a Mercedez Benz Commercial in 1994. I would like to take this opportunity to thank Mercedez Benz for putting me through college. (Check out the evidence here!)
Q: What else don't we know about you?
A: Well that commercial WAS my best kept secret....