Subliminal Souvenirs. Whatever That Means.

We’re already working on our third project in my Fashion Design class, and I’m just getting around to posting about the first one. Gee-whiz. Needless to say, the semester has been intense and a whirlwind of sorts, and it’s not going to slow down until it’s over… and it’s never over! I do love it though. oh so much.

The prompt for our first project was “Subliminal Souvenirs: Develop a collection based on your own memories and reminders of experiences by looking inward and outward for inspiration.” (There was more to it than that, but I’ll spare you the lengthy PDF.) I have to be honest and say that it kind of stumped me at first, mainly because I felt like I didn’t have many things that would qualify as”subliminal souvenirs”. When I moved to San Francisco from Austin I left those kinds of things behind. However, this made me come up with ideas that were less obvious, but at the same time – in the end – really more obvious. The majority of my research book was filled with pictures from ACL, as well as children’s toys and other knick-knacks. I’ll try to scan the pages in and post them when I get a chance!

One major learning tool that our instructor had us use for this project was that each week we were required to find different fashion illustrators and use their styles to inspire our croquis/roughs. These are two of my better ones from the project.

Inspired by Richard Chai’s illustrations.

Inspired by Stephanie Jiminez’s illustrations. I met Stephanie when I took some classes at the Austin School of Fashion Design about a year ago, and I loved her drawing style! I followed through with her illustrations as the major inspiration for my final girls.

On the day of our critique I ended up with 15 final looks and these are what I consider the best of those 15.

Overall it was a really good critique! (yay!) My instructor liked the boxiness/angularness of the collection as well as the oversized cuts. He also liked the hair (my signature from my previous projects [here and here] wrangled in a bit). He did suggest that I make the girl more “realistic”… ie shorter legs, arms, and neck. At the time I didn’t really agree (probably because I was running on 3 nights of no sleep) but looking at them now I definitely do and I’m glad I made an adjustmant for my second project.


Totem Poles and Matryoshka Dolls.

This is my second and final project that I completed last semester for my Fashion Design class. My inspiration this time started as the totem poles of the First Nations in British Columbia. I vacationed there last summer with my family and fell in love with their culture and art. (You can check out some pictures from that trip here.) It was difficult for me to find enough images of their work, so I expanded my inspiration to also include the Indians of the Pacific Northwest.

We followed the same process as the first project (you can check it out here), except we took it a step further and included what are called flats. Flats are the technical drawing of each design. In the industry illustrations tend to be more abstract/gestural/free and a flat is what the article of clothing would literally look like if it were laid down on a flat surface. It shows all details of construction and is a kind of map for a seamstress to follow along with the patterns. I enjoyed the flats much more than the illustrations, most likely because I love sewing so much and they made sense to me because they are more technical and based in construction. My fabric choices for this project were black and pink lightweight wools, a magenta silk dupioni, olivey-green bamboo jersey, and a purple silk chiffon. Overall I’m much happier with this collection because I feel it’s more true to my inspiration and is also much more cohesive than my first project. Like the first project, it’s very hard for me to pick a favorite piece. If I had to choose though I’d say that the highwaisted shorts in the second look are probably my favorite piece, although I would also love to have the pants in the last look as well!

Norway. ish.

I’ve been promising my friends and family that I would blog about my design projects for quite some time, and thanks to my wonderful friend Seth, who hooked me up with a scanner at UT, I’m finally am able to! I posted the first one a couple of days ago here. That was for my Fashion Illustration class, and this one is my first project from my Fashion Design class. We had to select a country as our inspiration, and I chose Norway. Don’t ask me why because all I can say is that I wanted to do something different…and I’m pretty sure that I had the song “Norway” by Beach House stuck in my head (listen to it here!). To start we all collected tons of pictures based on our country and created a research book using those images, and then we used our research books as inspiration to create sketches, tons and tons of sketches.

The picture above is my mood board, which contains some images from my research book that I felt best exemplified and explained the looks that I chose for my final collection. It also has fabric swatches that the pieces would be made out of. I ended up with a heavyweight and a midweight black wool, a grey lightweight wool, and pink velveteen, blue silk something… and I can’t remember what the white one was (ah!). I’m just at the beginning of school and learning how to sketch and render the fabrics, so I know these aren’t uh-mazing but I’m still proud of them! I can’t wait to compare these to the projects that I’m going to finish this semester. My favorite look is probably the first one on the right, but it changes a lot. My Fashion Design class was the most challenging one I took last semester, and also definitely the most rewarding. I am really looking forward to getting back to school so I can start being creative and productive again!

Fashion Illustration.

Over a month ago I wrote about starting the final for my Fashion Illustration class last semester (here), and this is the end result! Obviously I went with the Alexander McQueen dress (at least I hope that’s obvious). I wish I had taken pictures during the entire process to show y’all, but I was so focused on finishing that I didn’t really think about it. All in all I spent more than an entire weekend on the embroidery for this project and ended up drawing blood a few times. ouch! Overall I was happy with the end result, even though my instructor didn’t seem to be too impressed with my work. I ended up getting an A in the class though!

(If you’re interested you can click on the picture and zoom in to see my handiwork!)