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Local Designer Spotlight: Kelli Modica

Kelli Modica, our local designer for this week, has only been in Denver for about seven months but she's already created some impressive and original fashion with the help of The Other Side Arts complex, which we mentioned in this profile of designer Jonathan Applegate.

Kelli's designs for her lable, Captured Ink, are screenprints created from modified pictures taken during her adventures traveling and teaching in South Korea.

“I was selling flat prints of some of these photos, and I thought that I could make them more interesting by putting them on shirts,” she says.

Kelli had always had a strong interest in fashion, but didn’t have much in the way of design training. “The guys at TOSA taught me everything I know about screenprinting,” she explains. Her photos are extremely personal and filled with exotic content, which makes them immediately compelling, and the work has a polished and professional look that is unusual for relative novice in her field.

However, given her unique personal style, which Kelli says alternates between holey jeans, baby doll dresses, and wifebeaters t-shirts -- and which inspired one co-worker to tell her that she thinks “What would Kelli wear?” before choosing which t-shirt to wear for the day -- Kelli’s quick success shouldn’t be a surprise.

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One of Kelli's earliest successes came after she talked with the owners of local shop Gimme Gimme Pillow Toast, an Asian pop art boutique, about selling some of her photos at the shop. She mentioned her ideas about turning the photos into shirts. “They were excited about the idea,” she says. The shop has carried her designs for a couple of months now and is a spot to find unique, Asian-themed fashion and art.

To see more of Kelli’s designs, check out www.captured-ink.com or email her at kamodica@yahoo.com. Gimme Gimme Pillow Toast is located at 445 S. Saulsbury Street in Lakewood, and can also be found at www.gimmegimmepillowtoast.com.

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