“What’s next?” is the open-ended, multi-faceted theme we are exploring for Alembika’s Fall-Winter 2022 launch. It has not only been a long couple of years for everyone, but within our community of inspiring #AlembikaWomen, many have already experienced multiple journeys. Meet fashion influencer @CarolElizabethDietz—visual storyteller, creative dresser, and former NY Times art director—and hear about what’s next for her.
What is the very first thing that pops into your mind when you hear the question “What’s next?”
Every single day I ask myself that question. And I always run away from it. I am not in a rut of doing the same old thing. My life changed completely in 2018. I left my job, I got divorced, I moved twice. It left me totally unhinged. I was just adjusting to this new, single life when Covid hit. And it hit me hard. Living by myself, and staying in my apartment, I was very lonely! Now I am beginning to pick up the pieces and continue on. I am still re-creating myself. An endless learning curve. And I have stopped looking to yesterday for my answers. Yesterday’s roles are over. I’m not an employee of the New York Times, I’m not a wife, I’m not living in my old neighborhood. I have moved on. And so far, it has been a very difficult journey, but one that I needed to do. We all must continue our journeys and not give up. Actually, “what’s next” is a very good place to be.
Is there a specific career goal, creative endeavor or travel plan that you may embark upon in the coming months or year?
Oh, I feel a surge of creativity coming on! Everything seems to be waking up after several years of napping. I am working with a photographer on a book to accompany his documentary film. The great news is that I am also helping to edit the footage, design the opening credits, art direct the illustration, and write some copy… All because I asked to do it. I had skills he didn’t realize I had. How great is that! It all evolved into much more of a project. What a terrific learning experience for me.
I also feel safe to tiptoe into new things. I want to continue my work as a graphic designer. But I can also feel the desire to sew, and create things. I made all of MY clothing as a teenager, and I loved doing it. I know that I will make a garment soon. I am eager to glue something! I want to decorate things, add life and beauty and color to ordinary objects. Creativity is so healing for me. I am taking a writing class, I am learning to be comfortable speaking and sharing my opinion. So many ideas are coming to the surface. And rather than regret the lost time of quarantine and Covid worries, I embrace the freeing up of my creative spirit.
What do you envision yourself doing at this time next year?
I hope to have made more new friends. I wish to be a part of something more, and be more comfortable with just being myself. I hope to be in the middle of designing a book, or writing my own book. I will turn 70 next year. 70 will be my year!