Meet the team
In 2012 a group of us (Julia, Gerry and Alison plus Jenni Hampshire and Marianne Faulkner) got together to help make Julia's idea reality. In year one we ran the classes and did everything else besides. All busy working corset makers, we began to build a conference we would want to go to. Now as the conference has progressed, we have a core team of three 'Fellows' committed to organising the event, and an ever growing group of associates and contributors, including at times the other two Founding Fellows, enabling us to offer you the benefit of an ever widening pool of experience
OCOC organiser Julia Bremble owns the popular online shop, Sew Curvy, selling a wide range of supplies for the making of corsets, lingerie and general sewing.
From the Sew Curvy Studio in the heart of the beautiful Oxfordshire countryside she also teaches corsetry to both beginner and advanced students. Julia is also the author of a popular e-book on corset making for beginners. As well as the shop, classes and organising the conference, Julia makes bespoke corsetry and clothing under the label "Clessidra".
With a background in conference organisation, and the hospitality industry, Julia was the perfect person to have one of those 'why don't we do this, instead of wishing for it' moments! And so OCOC was born.
Alison Campbell, of Crikey Aphrodite is based in Glasgow in Scotland.
Alison swapped an 18 year career in graphic design for bespoke corsetry, Inspired by the landscape, history and the city around her and also by classic movie glamour from the elegant 30s to the technicolour 60s. She is passionate about fit and local fabrics, and is always keen to support and promote the Scottish textile industry.
Also a trained bra fitter, she is slightly obsessed by bust fit in corsetry.
Her work has been exhibited in venues as far apart as Moscow and Kilmarnock and is a staple in Glasgow catwalk shows.
After many years based in London we’ve lost Gerry back to Chicago but thanks to technology and air travel. she's as crucial a part as ever.
Gerry has developed a stellar reputation as a corsetiere throughout the years and has recently launched her own studio and showroom in Chicago. Her education is in fine art and fashion design while her experience rages from bespoke design and construction to pattern drafting and tutoring for the fashion industry.
Her label Morúa, specializes in corsetry and gowns that evoke romance, architecture and nostalgic visions of history. Gerry loves helping women look great and feel good with perfectly fitted dramatic heirloom pieces.
Barbara Pesendorfer is the owner and designer of the Austrian label Royal Black Couture & Corsetry.
With a master's exam in traditional tailoring, dressmaking and historic costumes for screen and stage, she founded Royal Black in 2006 and turned it into a full time business in 2011, after working as a costume designer at theatres and for several Austrian designers for a few years.
By now Royal Black is a well established name in the corsetry market and Barbara's creations are known for accurate craftsmanship, opulent decoration and innovative techniques like lasercut and handmade 3D ornaments.
Barbara has specialised in bespoke corsetry and extravagant couture commissions for clients from all over the world and her biggest passion is to explore new techniques for corsetmaking and decoration, to experiment with new patterns and lines and to push the boundaries of old trades with new technology.
We're delighted to welcome Californian corset-maker Laurie Tavan onto the team this year. Laurie started Daze of Laur back in 2006 and has recently re-branded under her own name. Known for her very distinctive style of historical fusion, her eye for design and colour is exemplary. Her immaculate construction and fit is also notable.
Also a talented photographer, she always takes some wonderful behind the scenes shots of the conference.
One of our founding team, Marianne Faulkner is based in San Francisco, California. Her line, Pop Antique, specialises in quirky, comfortable, curvy ready-to-wear corsetry. Alongside her focus on sustainable design, Marianne loves to experiment with innovative corset construction styles, including modular and integrated corsetry, and Pop Antique's unique knit corsets. With a strong retro influence, Marianne's vision for Pop Antique is easy and contemporary, not derivative. Marianne was mentored by Dark Garden during her MFA thesis. She continues to work at Dark Garden as a pattern maker and is also a columnist for The Lingerie Addict, where she continually furthers corset education in a way that is accessible and welcoming.
Caroline has joined us as a delegate every year and we've loved watching her progression, as we do everyones. This year she's on the team to help us all unravel the intricacies of CAD.
Combining other skills with corsetry is a fabulous way to grow an individual brand and Caroline has demonstrated this by developing corset patterns using her CAD skills. She'll be giving us a view into this.
Kiss Me Deadly was established in 2006 by Catherine Clavering, who founded the brand after struggling to find a "decent garter belt". The retro designs are inspired by the lingerie and fashion of the 40s and 50s.
The brand won the publicly-voted "Favourite British Designer" award at the 2012 UK Lingerie Awards and was nominated for the "Best Independent Directional Brand" the same year The brand was also nominated for the "Favourite Lingerie Brand" award in 2013 and the "Favourite British Designer" in 2013 and 2014 Kiss Me Deadly has been featured in a number of magazines.
Catherine will be joining us to talk about branding.