Wk 2: Friday 19 Feb

The lesson began with 5 students being chosen at random to present their designers and design ideas for their own collections.

I salute Rachel for going first and setting the bar high!

I found the presentations really informative, with everyone finding really interesting facts about their designers.
I also thought it was useful in that we all get to hear and learn more about our own aspirational designers who we may not have looked at in detail before. 
Feedback that I took on board for when I am to present were:
  • Have good overview of the designer
  • Be clear, use fashion vocabulary
  • Explain concept clearly with visuals
  • Be confident in what you are saying
After this some students then went on to present their fabric research.
I found it pretty insightful and Helen's fact about man-made coloured cotton was interesting in that I'd like to look more into eco-fashion and the experimental techniques being used by man to create new materials.

We were then sent off in our groups to visit fabric and trimming stores in and around the West End.

Having visited a numerous amount of stores in West it was great to have a list of places that I hadn't visited yet.

We began at mcculloch and wallace, I was very suprised I had never been here before. I loved the store; their layout and the freedom we were given. They had beautiful wools, hairs such as camel which I was looking at to make my tailored jacket out of. 
I also found a really beautiful rich chocolate silk (cupramonium) which I would love to use to drape my dress.

 We then went on to Berwick Street, visiting the usuals; Cloth House, Silk Society, Borovick, then onto Liberty to see their new collection of prints.

I then went to a fabric store that a final year had told me about on Mare Street, Hackney to pick up a cheaper version of the fabrics I had seen today for toiling, fabric manipulation, burning etc. 


Final Concept Board

I chose to put up both boards as the top one clearly shows my concept.
And the second being more experimental entitled 'Clothed with the Sun'

My concept lies within the draped body in visual cultures. Exploring the connotations that relate to drapery; purity and civilised elgance contrasted against barbarism and poverty.

Friday 12 February

Fabric Technology

"You should be designing from your fabrics, not designing and then trying to find fabrics to match." - Karen Ferry

I think this how I work. I like to experiment on the stand with manipulated pieces and then design from these ideas.

Given the task to research relevant fabrics our designers use I remember seeing fabric contents on online stores such as www.julesb.co.uk/, www.my-wardrobe.com/, www.net-a-porter.com/

100% cotton velvet

Taffeta: 57% polyamide 43% cotton

Silk mix: 41% viscose, 32% silk, 27% wool

Group Work - Concept Board
We firstly started the session by talking about our designers leading onto the imagery/artefacts we had brought for our concept boards.
After displaying our work, and talking to each other about our initial concept ideas I thought it would be uself to each other if we took a step back and basically said any words that came to mind whilst looking at each others boards. 
This was helpful in looking at areas to research further.
As we all think differently, one image can have 100 different meanings.

My Initial Concept Board

Sian Crit: 
  • Can tell definite mood
  • Like reference to historical wear
  • Reference to other designers
  • Needs to be refined
Group Ideas
  • Like warm colour pallete for autumn/winter
  • old book pages
  • dead flowers
  • two-tone
  • stalagmites

    So I'm off to refine my imagery and include fabric samples for my final concept board before the deadline!

Stand work gets my creative juices flowing!

At this point I had many ideas in my head yet nothing was concrete.

I decided to have a gander through my fabric box, and started to play about on the stand with a two-way stretch cotton jersey just to get a feel for silhouettes keeping in mind the designer is very feminine (close-to the body) contrasted with a very loose cowl-neck feel for her dresses.

I then went to Berwick Street to look for lighter weight jerseys and other draping fabrics i.e. silk chiffons.

I got samples for my fabric book and went to a fabric shop in Hackney to get a good couple of metres of similiar fabric that I could use for fabric manipulation and more draping styles.

Powerpoint Presentation

Knowing that five people would be picked at random to present on the first day back (Friday 12 Feb) I knew I had to start this early as I'm not really a fan of presenting so I wanted to be as prepared as I could be for it.
So I began by selecting information from my secondary research..
Being such a small and quite new (2001) design label it was difficult to find many sources except for their official site and other online stores they sold on i.e. www.net-a-porter.com/,
but it was enough for me to gain an overview of the company, their history and handwriting of their collections.

Starting this early helped in that I could come back to it, ammend  and was a good starting point for my design  research -collecting artefacts, images, fabrics, books, exhibitions, film, music (inspirational material) that I could then later put into my presentation.

5 Feb 2010: History Trip

After finding all the online secondary research I could on La petite Salope I began to think of places I could visit for design inspiration.

So I took a trip to the Victoria and Albert museum to look and sketch specifically from the draped sculptures. I wanted to see how cloth was used in history to drape the body.
I liked the idea of having a taliored piece layered with excessive drapery as collar or neck detail.

I also wanted to research more into the religious connotations relating to cloth and drapery. 

I then went to the National History Museum as I'd never been before and thought it may be enlighting.
Overall it was a great experience, really cool colours (a/w colour pallete), organic shapes(drapery), and of course very informative on the environment.


Working Back

To explain where I am now I am going to work back slightly to inform you of the process I have gone through so far.

You have been assigned designer La petite Salope and you are working in the creative direction studio or ‘atelier’. The assistant designer (you) in this department have been hand picked to come up with innovative ideas for the next collection of Autumn/Winter 2010.
Your ideas must reflect the ethos of the designer, so you must thoroughly research the label, the history and the handwriting of the collections and make a 10 minute presentation to the senior designers (i.e. myself, Karen and the rest of the class) with your findings and the initial design research material. (Every week, five students make these presentations in the first hour of class at 10’O Clock before the session begins until everyone has made a presentation.)
You will start to design research with your designer in mind, collecting artefacts, images, fabrics, books, exhibitions, film, music, and inspirational material etc in the way you have been taught in previous modules.
In the designer’s atelier you will first put your ideas on the studio wall for inspiration and start to work on the stand developing silhouettes first, then any other details including fabric manipulation and/or print ideas. The head designers will supervise your work and ask you to provide a capsule collection of six outfits, one of which will be a tailored garment. The head designers will incorporate this into the main collection based on your research and their research together. You will be responsible for and important part of this designer label’s collection and the reward for this is that your ideas will be made up and presented in a show to International press and buyers at Paris Fashion Week. 
In reality you will play the part of the technical team also and produce one outfit to show an item of which should be tailored.

On recieving my designer La petite Salope as I was not familiar with the designer I began my initial research on their official site to get a feel for their design aesthetic, what there all about and their history.

My primary thoughts for this designer lay within:
  • beautiful structured drapery
  • charcoal palette
  • bow detail
  • feminine elegance
  • finest silk chiffons / jerseys
  • grecian inspired
  • floating
  • water/liquid
  • dreams


Personal Development Plan

I initially started up my blog as one of my New Year's resolutions as a means of documenting my looks, inspiration, photography I took etc etc.
(in a nutshell, my life) and of course my degree is a big part of my life at the moment so I posted about my initial thoughts to the new design brief on there.

I am now creating a new blog solely for the design module (FT2415), as I want to keep the two seperate going for a more professional stance for my PDP.

This will document the thoughts processes I go through throughout the module including SWOT, group crits, mentor tutorials, inspiration,(visits/people etc.) research pages, concept board, colour/fabric board, range plan, reference board and illustration will be presented alongside any other tasks set by teaching staff.