All I wanted was a kick pleat inserted into a dress, a Geoffrey Beane dating back to the days when the label meant something, days long before Grey Flannel. But I needed a dressmaker who knew the difference between a French seam and a silk seam.
Down the street, well actually a few streets, and off into the adjoining neighborhood of Vista Bella an old house, an expansive property on Rey Tariacuri just beyond Farmacia Guadalajara, was transforming itself into a new business. The first clue was that it might harbor an interior design firm, the likes of which might be found in cities more sophisticated than Morelia. As the window dressing went in, we pondered that it might be a high-end clothing store, the likes of which still can’t be found in Morelia. Bare and ancient mannequins stood over Chanel, Ferragamo, Prada, Carolina Herrera, and other labels, a swatch of fabric here and there, an appealing approach for a clothing store. My breath quickened as I entered, wondering about the merchandise and hoping the store would have an alterations department.
Only dreams were for sale there. The new place is Innardi, the first institution, or so it billed itself, granting a licenciatura (equivalent to a U.S.-level bachelor’s degree, only a tad better) in fashion design, promoting the Mexican textile industry. Feeling like a rube who’d walked into New York’s famed Fashion Institute of Technology, I asked the receptionist for a referral to a dressmaker who knew French seams, peeling back the sleeve of my Eileen Fisher perfect white shirt. She understood. And as she checked her Rolodex, I browsed the school’s curriculum, which also appears on its website. This school is serious business, and a semester’s tuition is $35,000 M.N. (just a shade under $3,500 U.S.D.) a semester.