Elias Matso

An Invasive Species

Class of: 2025

Major: Fashion Design BFA

Medium: Fascinator made of vintage upholstery fabric, spandex, steel wire, and glass beads.

Faculty: Frank Holliday

Prompt: We were asked to make a mask that coordinated with a character created in Seminar.

Though this piece was created to go along with a character I created in Integrative Seminar 1, that did not at all dictate its design. I have always loved hats and fascinators and have made wire-based pieces in the past. When I found out we were going to be making masks based on fictional characters, I decided to have my character be a milliner which would give me almost total freedom to create any sort of headpiece I wanted. When designing something as complicated and technical as a fascinator I really don’t like going into it with any sort of creative constraints, so for me, this approach was perfect. Over the past year, I have been experimenting with structured pieces that appear to have been generated in a completely organic way, with undulating lines and sensual curves. I continued that theme with this piece. Originally the hat was going to be red vinyl but I found that it revealed too much of the wireframe underneath. I had some green vintage couch fabric under my bed from a trip to the flea market and that was when the hat took on a more fantastical element. From there I decided the hat should walk the line between a snake and carnivorous vine: stunning but possessive. Ironically the end result did actually embody many parts of the narrative I created for the character, which was a lovely surprise.