Monday, December 21, 2009


The semester is finally done! Breathe. Rest. Relax. The last few weeks were especially hectic. Since we had several final projects due the last week, I devised a strategy to work on one project at a time and check it off the list, in order to entirely focus on my term garment at the end. I actually had projects done a week in advance. My friend, Anna, called me "the most productive procrastinator" she knew. But it worked! 

Since I was so focused on school, the fact that Christmas was right around the corner was completely lost on me. However, we got our first snow in New York and it was magical! Now it seems a lot more like Christmas. It started off as a little dusting of flakes and then it turned into SNOW as indicated in the photos below. 

The culmination: Term Garment. I started off dreading this project. I'm generally not extremely interested in evening gowns so I wasn't too excited to make one. The one thing that had me interested was my idea to do a side cowl in a stripe fabric. When I saw this fabric, it was so unique that I was instantly drawn to it. My original sketch seemed a lot more elegant but the fabric transformed the dress into something completely different. Some people do elegant, some do sexy... I suppose I do edgy. In the end, I am really proud of myself for making a garment from start to finish, without instructions and with proper finishing techniques. Merry Christmas and Happy Term Garment!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Ciao Bella

I almost can't believe that the semester is coming to a close. The cliche saying, "It seems like it was just yesterday..." is so fitting right now. I've never learned so many things in such a short amount of time and I've never felt more fulfilled in my life. However, the pace was a little too "break-neck" for me so I am looking forward to a little down time over the holiday break, but I know myself and I can't stand to be static for long. I am already looking forward to next semester, spending the majority of my time doing Fashion Illustration and honing my art skills. I am going to experiment with watercolor and pen over the break and I get giddy just thinking about it. I am also looking forward to next Fall as well, since it is very likely that I will be studying Knitwear in Milan for the year. That leads me to the project that I am featuring today. My inspiration was the Marni Design House, based in Italy. Marni collections feature sophisticated colors and prints done to perfection. The silhouettes are uncommon, sometimes feminine and I love their styling. So, for my Computer project I did my version of Marni, with a theme centered around Italy. I've gotten much better at Photoshop and we used Illustrator to make the flats, which is exciting but there's so much more to learn. I also created the plaids and the print, using Photoshop. Hope you like! Ciao!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

My Balenciaga

My latest project in Fashion Art & Design was the Tailored Garment Project based on a Great Design House. My inspiration house was Balenciaga. I chose to highlight the volume, architecture and dark colors that Balenciaga was known for. These figures are my most favorite yet, since they have a lot of "style." I also like how they look like they're floating and that the garments are floating around them. The mood page has a picture of a historical Balenciaga garment, which I thought looked like a big black cloud and hence it fit my stormy theme.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

TG: Term Garment

As the finish line draws nearer, the words "term garment" take on new meaning. No longer is it the time for half garments, in muslin, pinned. Now, since we've almost completed an entire 3 semesters in 1, we are obviously ready to drape, pattern and sew a complete Vionnet-inspired evening gown... Stay tuned for that adventure.

In Structured Draping, the professor moved the "term garment" project up so that we wouldn't be going TG crazy all at the end, best to spread out the crazy... The assignment was the notched-collar jacket and it took us an entire month to finish. First, we padded the form to allow for the clothing that one wears under a jacket. Then, we draped the body, lapel, sleeve and collar in muslin. We then made paper pattern pieces from that body, changed some measurements here and there (it was much more calculated than my description) and made two new sets of patterns, the suit pattern and the lining pattern. I chose to do a single-breasted jacket, with an oversized lapel and collar, a shortened sleeve and two buttons with a besom pocket. Structured draping TG: check!

After such a long and drawn out process with the notched-collar jacket, I kind of forgot what a deadline felt like in that class. The latest assignment was a sewn raglan-sleeve jacket, no lining, with a collar, pocket and closures. Since I'm a bit obsessed with the underarm cowl I just had to do it again. After I was done kicking myself, I realized I really like the way it turned out. I also got lucky because I totally forgot to design a pocket into it, but the bottom cowl just happens to work as a pocket! The closures would be toggles. We are supposed to choose one jacket from either the raglan, kimono or drop shoulder to showcase on the final day, nicely sewn with lining, and I am seriously contemplating making this one as a full garment, in real fabric so I can wear it. That might be a little too much crazy for me to handle... and there's always winter break!

While I was inside draping, this is what New York looked like outside... stunning.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Absence Makes the Heart Grow Fonder

I apologize for my absence, I've been crazy busy for 20 days, apparently. I'll just give a rundown of what I've been spending all of my time doing. After draping a creative dolman in Soft Silhouettes, our next project was a creative pant. For the creative dolman, I really let the fabric lead me and it turned out very interesting. This time there were so many directions I could have gone, so instead of taking a lot of time to play, I decided to see if I could execute a pant that I had sketched previously. I wanted a drop-crotch pant that was skinny under the knee. Voila, pretty simple. Next time, I'll take the time to play.

Our next project in that class was the creative cowl. My work in progress.

My final cowl garment. The black style tape above the bust is not intended for this design. Other students often leave their tape on the forms and it is out of courtesy that I did not remove it. I think my design looks kind of vintage, yet modern. I picture it with a black pencil skirt, long black gloves, fingerwaves and a small hat with netting over the face.

I'm about to make myself look bad since my design was much more simple than most of my classmates' designs, but I simply love the variety and creativity, so I have to share.









Isn't the variety striking? I always thought it would be hard to be different from other fashion designers but being in this program has actually strengthened my sense of individuality. I also love the creative process and the way we all ask each other's opinion, so often there's a little bit of each other in our designs. For Fashion Illustration, I spent more time on this simple 3/4 turn assignment than I should have but, I'm happy with the way it turned out and it was fun to design lingerie.

The class that takes the most brain power for me, and for most of my classmates, is Flat Pattern. The teacher gives us a basic lesson and then she emphasizes that our projects need to be "extremely creative." Our assignment was to draft a pattern and sew a front and back bodice using dart manipulation and combine it with a creative dirndle (gathered skirt) to make a cohesive dress. To explain dart manipulation, a flat piece of fabric needs darts (or gathers, pleats, tucks) in order to fit the curves of the body so dart manipulation means we take the normal darts that are usually at the waistline and bust and we move them around on the flat pattern and create a unique look. To reiterate, this took a huge amount of my brain power to pull off so I'm pretty proud of it even though its kind of odd... I don't know if you can tell from the photo but the white triangles are actually the darts turned inside out with a closed dart underneath, the flap on the yoke and white under the lace both reflect the peak-a-boo effect. I got an A minus because my pattern pieces had no notches...

I'm really loving learning the ins and outs of Photoshop. Continuing with our Marc Jacobs project, our assignment was to fill in the styled figures that we drew using the fabric prints that we created. I like her, but we probably wouldn't be friends. =)

It seems I never quite recovered after a side project that I did a few weeks ago, I've been really busy and tired ever since. However, I am glad I challenged myself. The side project I am speaking of is the application for the Fusion Fashion Show. Fusion is a competition between rival schools Parsons and FIT. Fifteen students from each school are chosen to complete a 5 look collection for the fashion show in the Spring. My inspiration was androgyny, and I designed a collection that combined masculinity and femininity. Out of 250 applications, I made the top twenty for my school. However, I didn't make it to the final 15, but I am the second alternate in case two people drop out. In the off chance that I do end up doing the show, I am opting not to post my renderings. However, I thought I'd share my mood page. I created the pattern that showcases the title, "ANDRO." I thought it was interesting that A's and O's are bi-directional so the word can be spelled forward and backward and still stay connected. This duality is analogous to the androgyny concept. My second inspiration was the Fall season, I am loving the brick and olive colors right now.

Side note: I am considering studying Knitwear in Milan next year. What are your thoughts?

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Drapes of Wrath

I encountered my toughest challenge thus far, the creative dolman. On Monday, the professor encouraged us to simply play with the fabric to get a feel for what it wanted to do. I was originally working with a lightweight crepe georgette and I discovered that soft draping is much harder than it looks. I felt as though I needed at least three hands to be able to do the job right and I started to get really nervous that maybe I was a null at soft draping. Wednesday night I decided to take some extra time to play with a heavier fabric in order to get some more practice before Friday's class. The extra play time and sturdier fabric really helped and Friday I created a dolman that I liked. The professor said I was skipping forward to a future lesson by doing an underarm drape but he didn't want to discourage my creativity so he encouraged me to move forward. This is one piece of fabric draped under the arm to create a dolman sleeve on one side and I later draped another piece of fabric to match at the center back and other side seam. All pins at this point, I later tacked and marked it with thread.

For our assignments, we are only required to drape one half of the garment if its a symmetrical design. I was tired of throwing away fabric and having nothing to show for all of my hard work, so I decided to drape the whole garment. That decision almost led to a breakdown when I took all of this drapey fabric off the form and it ended up looking like a confusing jumble of nothingness on the table. After a long night in the work room, I pretty much had it sorted out and today I finished it "classroom style" for the grading. I still have some tweaking to do to it for it to be wearable but overall I am really proud of myself for what I created.