I would like to start off by telling you the story of sat-su-ma. In fact, this is not just the story of a brand producing natural dyed garments, this is, in a sense, the story of my life.
I am Özge Horasan, the brain, the artisan and the designer of sat-su-ma. The evoking beauty and darkness of nature always had a great influence on me. As a sort of result to this, I did a biology degree. Afterwards, for my love of flowers, I gained extensive knowledge on plants by taking a master’s degree on botany, which was a naive drift. However, I felt I never become wholly absorbed in the objectivizing side of science and decided I had enough knowledge on this matter already. I left academia, without having an idea of a next step.
I only knew I wanted to grow away from the objective idea and follow my never ending curiosity on the creating process itself and why people create. I started and worked for social- art projects with the people whom I share the same concerns, for about two years. During this period of time, I had the chance to experiment and to analyze my own creativity, in theory, with the help of other people. Creating was not a concept, it was an experience, though.
At this point, one and a half years ago, in the summer of 2013, I decided to make a shift in the habitual course of my life. I left the city and the social sphere I lived in all of a sudden and pushed away things I believed that made me who I am. I followed my inner instinct mutterings that I should throw myself into the unknown. I took a suitcase of clothing and a few books with me and moved to İzmir Seferihisar.
In the begining, these obscurities caused strong anxieties, but as time went by I realized they were my most reliable guidance, as long as I kept the doors of my perception open. After only a few months, while I was trying to figure my way out of the haze, the idea of natural dyeing occured to me as a consequence of a series of meaningful coincidences. With a motive that made me wonder why I had not begun earlier, I instantly started all the neccessary research and gathered the materials I need to set up trials. All of this happened at a speed I had never before found myself performing at in my life.
For about six months I worked on optimizing the dyeing process. With the help of my botany knowledge, I researched and tested the engageability of natural dyeing substances to cotton fibers, dependence of dyeing conditions on types of dyeing compounds and the plant species in my local area that I could use for dyeing. At the end of the six months, I had my recipes, plant lists and color palette.
I was ready after a time to dye larger pieces of cloth and started sewing simple things such as, tote bags, household items and soft toys. I gave these away to my friends who had influenced me up until this point in my life where I am now. There was no point in keeping the very first products I made to myself.
Sewing wasn’t a new thing for me. Since my childhood, I have been familiar with the tools; needles, threads, clothes and the sewing machine. My childhood drawing books are full of fashion sketches with bizarre long legged models. However, I hadn’t been patient, determined and consistent yet, so it had always been hard for me to follow this ambition of mine. Years later, I finally reached a point where there were floating images of garments I was going to make in my mind and had no choice but to grab the scissors and start to cut clothes. I built a small but practical studio for myself and began to sew day and night.
I began by making totes, which was followed by tops, skirts, dresses, jackets and trousers. Thus, I have established the foundations of a brand producing natural dyed garments of which I have bound the dyeing and sewing steps harmoniously after a year of hard work. I am now a kind of person who has the rattling sound of a sewing machine in her life all the time, who has called her dress form a name, who searches for color in flowers, leaves and fruits all the time when outside. And I am thrilled that I will go on doing these things for the rest of my life.
As much as I wish sat-su-ma products would be the items you love to wear, I hope also that its story would touch somebody too.
My best regards,