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C. Adele Creations,  sewingforlife.net

Carla Robertson (BS '85):

Mending seams and broken dreams

For Texas Woman’s alumna Carla Robertson (BS ‘85), fashion has always been a do-it-yourself endeavor. At the age of six, Robertson learned how to sew from her mother. By the time she was 12, she was making all of her own clothes, and at 16, she began sewing custom creations for private clients.

After receiving her associate’s degree from El Centro College and interning as a sample cutter for a local manufacturer, she knew a career in clothing production would not provide the creative freedom and variety she craved. For Robertson, “variety meant learning to be an entrepreneur in the field,” so she decided her next step would be to pursue her bachelor’s degree in costume and textile design (now fashion design) at TWU.

During her time at TWU, Robertson forged new friendships, explored new opportunities and created a new wardrobe. “Every Friday, [my roommate and I] walked down University Drive to what was then M.E. Moses and purchased fabric to make new outfits to wear the next week,” she recalled.


C. Adele Creations, sewingforlife.net


She participated in her first fashion show and studied under designer-in-residence Les Wilk, “King of the drop-dead dress” and renowned designer of Miss Texas and Miss America pageant gowns during the 1970s and ‘80s. She also became a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority at TWU, where she made outfits for sorority step shows and participated in group community service projects.

After graduating from TWU in 1985, Robertson returned to her hometown of Dallas and continued to design for private clients, creating custom wedding gowns, costumes and women’s wear for her solo business venture, C. Adele Creations, which still thrives today.

Sewing for Life


In 1999, Robertson was inspired by her pastor, who encouraged his congregation to pass on their unique talents by teaching the next generation. It was then the idea for Robertson’s “Sewing for Life” program was born, and she began teaching group and individual sewing classes to children in her community and at the SALT Educational Co-op, a Christian homeschooling organization. She also began her collaboration with Abi Ferrin’s Fashion+Freedom+Purpose Project, where she served as a vocational trainer for women coming out of trafficking and domestic violence situations.

As part of her outreach, Robertson traveled to Kenya, Haiti and Papua New Guinea to educate and encourage instructors and students as they develop their own sewing skills and businesses.




Dallas Designing Dreams

In 2006, one of Robertson’s first sewing students, Arthur Porter, came up with the idea for Dallas Designing Dreams, a non-profit that “nurtures the creativity and entrepreneurial spirit of individuals with ‘dreams or broken dreams’” by providing access to equipment, software, information and encouragement to help them begin sewing, designing or even launching their own businesses. As a collaborator and executive board member, Robertson provides the non-profit’s students with programming, software and vocational education and also serves as a special event and project planner. Projects currently underway include a Southwest Airlines Repurpose with Purpose Partnership, in which airline seats are “up-cycled” and made into handbags, and the recent launch of Dallas Designing Dreams as an Airbnb Experience location.

When asked about her proudest moments among her many, many achievements, Robertson expresses gratitude and humility. She is grateful for the opportunity “to impact women here and on the other side of the world,” and the ability “to touch lives on a daily basis. To know that God has given everyone innate talents, dreams and abilities, helping them tap into that is my greatest joy.”

Dallas Designing Dreams Co-founders

Why Us?​

"Start where you are, use what you have, do what you can do"...Arthur Ashe

******

"We believe that everyone has been given creativity as a gift.

That gift must be nurtured by "starting" with what you have

and doing your best. Perfection is not the goal."

******

Our niche is conducting small classes to have close interaction between the instructors students

for great learning opportunities.


Education

BS - Texas Woman's University - Costume and Textile Design 1985

AA - El Centro College - Apparel Design 1982


Currently serves as

  • Owner, C. Adele Creations- Designer, sewing educator, creative coach/mentor
  • Co - Founder of Dallas Designing Dreams - Programs, Giving Saturday, and  Handbag Patternmaker, Airbnb Experience Host, Southwest Airlines Repurpose With Purpose Partner
  • Co-Designer of costumes for Irma Rangel theater dept.
  • Design Your Dream class instructor
  • Vocational instructor for Abi Ferrin's Love + Freedom Project


Currently Carla teaches Sewing classes at

  • Dallas Designing Dreams - Adult, teens, children
  • SALT Homeschool Educational Co-op
  • On MissionHumanitarian trips- already traveled to Kenya, Papua New Guinea, South Africa, Haiti and Nigeria
Carla's Experience includes
  • Teaching at several local sewing related businesses
  • Co-Costume Designer for the award winning Harry Stone Montessori School Drama Dept.
  • Oak Cliff Bible Fellowship Church                              Ministry Leader of the Costume/Sewing Ministry Gathering of the Girls
  • Sewing Machines Sales for Bernina/Babylock
  • Alterations for Davids Bridal​