Wider Horizons

For Tera-Beth Ann Gausvik (Fashion Design and Sustainable Production 2016), the best moment of her work in the Tera-Beth Ann Gausvikcollege’s Fashion Design and Sustainable Production program comes at the end – when she finishes a garment or project and can sit back and look at it.

“The struggle in learning the process and then putting it into action leaves you with a ‘wow I can do this’ moment,” says Gausvik, who first came to the college in 2004 after high school and then returned in 2013 for training in a career where she could use her creativity. “The most satisfying aspect is the realization that I am skilled and capable of designing and producing marketable products, and fulfilling my dreams and goals of being a fashion designer.”

She had that feeling when she finished a Jaws-inspired swimsuit (complete with a shark-bite cut-out on the side) as an assignment for a class. “We were told at the beginning that we would be making a swimsuit, and I thought, okay, this is going to be fun,” she says. “I was on a bit of a movie marathon that weekend and happened to see Jaws and I could just envision the bite being taken out of a swimsuit.” The shiny, sharked-skin fabric was already in her stash – purchased from a graduating student last year. And the finished piece is creative, memorable and truly one-of-a-kind.

Designing these kinds of garments was the inspiration for the online, Lethbridge- and Vancouver-based business, 2DiamondGirls Design, which Gausvik started with her birth mother last year. Together they have created items for individual clients and small boutiques, and recently shipped a round of cocktail dresses for a bar in Vancouver.

Gausvik is eager to build the business more once she graduates – and she’ll be using some of the tools and skills she learned from what she describes as “world-class instructors” when she does.

“The instructors also have a genuine passion for teaching and helping students to succeed,” says Gausvik, who made a particularly strong connection with instructor Brenda Brandley. “Brenda encouraged me to use my creative skills, assisted in techniques and offered suggestions in a helpful fashion,” Gausvik says. “She is an excellent instructor who takes a personal interest in all her students.”

Brandley says Gausvik was a memorable student.

“Tera-Beth demonstrates a unique design style that is strong and creative,” says Brandley. “She continually strives to develop her practical skills so that she can actualize her amazing ideas and she has grown so much over the course of her time in the program. I love to see what ideas she has and how she works through the design and construction process to create her finished product.”

And the finished product – that, of course, is the part that Gausvik likes best.

Wider Horizons
Lisa Kozleski
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