BROCKTON – During the pandemic, Jawanda Evans spent her free time working on her childhood sewing business, which led to the opening of Jim Werte.
The showroom at 33 Dover St., Suite 303 was once just an idea that turned into an actual clothing business.
The self-taught custom fashion designer began her journey at the age of 11. The Evans family taught her the basics of sewing and her skills grew over time.
In the year In 2013, after a back injury while working as a hospital nurse left her on leave, Evans, 35, began taking a trip down memory lane and dabbling in an old craft.
“I spent most of the pandemic sewing face masks. It was almost like a sweatshop with my whole family helping me. We sewed thousands of masks in that time,” Evans said.
The sewing didn’t stop there. Evans began exploring different ways to express herself creatively during the Covid-19 pandemic.
“I love to create clothes that make people stand out. When I wear clothes, I feel like no one else has them. It makes fashion unique. I’ve always been fascinated by transforming a fabric into something wearable. Beautiful. My soul yearns for fashion and wants to see something turn into a wearable work of art.” Evans said.
Evans went to what she calls “YouTube University” to learn new techniques and how to make different clothes.
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“I never went to fashion design school. Instead, I taught myself and learned everything I do from online resources,” Evans said.
On the other hand, Evans attended Southeastern Regional Vocational Technical School of Nursing in Easton in her previous high school and graduated from the School of Nursing in 2007.
So far, Verte by Gem has made ball gowns, dresses, handbags, corsets, luggage—anything you put on your body, Evans can do.
Each garment created by the Brockton resident is measured and designed to fit each customer perfectly. Evans spends countless hours creating the same pieces every week.
She thrives when she’s not in the hospital, racing to her showroom to meet a deadline. She may make four to six dresses at a time every day.
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Spending a few hours on each outfit and altering it keeps things interesting, Evans said.
Custom design is like art therapy for a fashion designer. Once she walks into her showroom and begins to sew together scraps of fabric, nothing in the world makes sense.
Evans’ mission with her brand is simple.
“I want everyone to feel beautiful and worthy, regardless of shape or size. I know the struggle of not finding the perfect fit,” Evans said.
The brand caters to all sizes and wants women to know they are fit no matter their size. According to Evans, every woman should feel confident in their clothes.
Custom Designer aims to be a household name when it comes to designing luxury fashion and opening storefronts.
The showroom in Brockton is by appointment only and potential customers can make an appointment by contacting Evans on her Instagram and Facebook accounts.
Upcoming Evans creations will be in two fashion shows in September and October.
Evan is giving back to the Brockton community by hosting an annual high school prom dress giveaway of up to $1,200. The draw will be held from January 1 to 15.
The custom designer hopes her designs will one day change the world and how people view fashion of different sizes.
Corporate staff reporter Alisha St-Ciel can be reached by email at email@example.com. You can follow her on Twitter at @alishaspeakss and Instagram at Alishaatv. Support local journalism by purchasing a digital or print subscription to The Enterprise today.