fashion school flashback – my first design project
Okay, if you’re just landing on this site now for the first time, I want to assure you that since this project was made I went on to do much more impressive things.
This is more of a treat for all of the fashion students who email me with questions, and aspiring fashion entrepreneurs who are curious about how I got started. I often say that no one (with the exception of exceptional geniuses) starts out as a fashion rock star, and perhaps the best way to prove this is by showing you something.
I present to you… my first ever major fashion school project, circa 2002:
Yes – this is a linen-look polyester printed striped shirt, with purple polyester ruffle trim, princess seams, a V neck and matching hemline. On a design level, I have no idea why I would make such arbitrary choices when it comes to fabrics, trims and design details. This shirt takes ugly to a whole new level, which is why I won’t show you what it looks like on a body.
One thing that I am impressed with for a first effort is the level of finishing. Seems I was an unusually finicky first year fashion student, and the seam allowances, serging and seams are all remarkably even and assured looking (though I do recall much unpicking and restitching). I also managed to match almost all of the stripes on the side seams, though the stripes don’t quite match anywhere else. I also quite like the shaping of the facings.
One area where I had trouble was where the collar meets the center front. It had not occurred to me in the patternmaking stage how I would deal with such a narrow breakpoint when I sewed it, and I had to jury-rig the finishing here with a small snap and some stitches to make the collar lie correctly.
The other thing I valiantly struggled with was fitting the required 2″ sleeve cap ease (according to the patternmaking textbook) into the armholes. That I managed to somehow compress the inflexible polyester without a single pucker is a testament to many tries, and maybe a little bit of “cheating” when it came to trimming the seam allowance.
The other thing that amuses me now about this shirt is the effort I put into transferring all of the curves of the princess seam into the side panels, so that the front and back panels seams were straight lines along the grain. The unintended (and in retrospect, funny) effect of such painstaking patternmaking is that the stripes on the fabric appear to create a bulging effect at the waist.
Your turn – do you have any tales of first year fashion projects? Major bonus points from me to any blogger gutsy enough to post evidence of such early efforts.