Elsie Q is a celebration of generations of hardworking, innovative women creating for their families and friends.

My great-grandmother Elsie immigrated from Ireland to the United States during the Great Depression. Using the skills she learned from her mother, she hand-sewed every stitch of clothing her children wore during the 1930s.

In those hard times, Elsie and her friends exchanged hand-me-downs with each other and re-fitted secondhand clothes to fit themselves and their families. Flour sacks and tablecloths became baby clothes and skirts, men’s overcoats were resized to fit their little girls, out-of-style dresses were cut apart and became their little boys’ shirts.

This tradition is carried on almost a century later, with her dedication to reusing, recycling, and repurposing fabrics and fibers as the inspiration for every piece I make.

Taking the old and making it new again is my personal passion, from the recycled fibers in my Everything Baskets to the repurposed vintage materials I incorporate into each one-of-a-kind Elsie Q dress. Every custom dress can be made from fabric that you hold dear, from your mom’s collection of embroidered tea towels or your grandfather’s mid-century jacket.

Elsie Q is about recreating the personalized feel of traditional dressmaking and helping you carry your family’s history and heritage with you everywhere you go. - Angela Smith