Friday, June 7, 2013

Behind the Seams

Punny, right?

At my high school, the seniors are let off of school 3 weeks before everyone else to complete a senior project of their choice.  I decided to choose a project that further pursued my interest in fashion.  I've gotten involved in fashion marketing quite a bit by taking classes at FIDM, working in retail and writing for a Seattle fashion blog.  However, I've never explored the process behind fashion design which led me to choose a project that allowed me to personally experience the work that goes into design.

Therefore, I decided to design a collection for Fall '14.  I named the collection Beauchamp which is the original spelling of my last name.

First, I created a market board to figure out who my demographic is.  I chose the "fashionable college student" who shops at Aritzia, Nordstroms, Anthropologie and who is a fan of Alexander McQueen, Alexander Wang, Phillip Lim and Band of Outsiders (photo shown above).

The second step was to trend forecast because I didn't know off the top of my head what trends are going to be in style for Fall '14.  I used a professional trend forecasting website called WGSN which allowed me to look up colors, trends, silhouettes and fabrics that will be in style for fall.  I also worked with a designer who designs for Unionbay and individual stores who helped understand the entire process.  Here is what I found and how my forecasting board turned out: 

My board with the colors and silhouettes that will be in style for Fall '14


* I LOVE the middle tuxedo jacket 

 Next, I created inspiration boards for my collection from magazine clippings from various magazines that are current as well as 10 years old to revisit styles that I believe fit the future trends and the customer I have chosen to design for.

My favorites: black & white Isabel Marant ad, creme Balmain dress, 
checkered Louis Vuitton dress and Alexander Wang silk overalls

My favorites: chunky knit sweater in front, structured metallic suit in the back 

My favorites: burgundy leather jacket with coral pants, Dior black and white dress

The next step was designing.  Before I started my project, I knew that I wanted to design a piece and then actually sew it.  One thing I learned from my sewing teacher is that many designers use existing patterns and alter them substantially to make it their own design.  Therefore, I found a pattern for a sleeveless dress that was knee length and a straight silhouette.  By sketching, I altered by adding length, a hood, a zipper, slits on the side and by adding a color block pattern.  Here is what my sketch looks like: 

Continuing with my designs, I decided to sketch individual pieces as well as to incorporate my love for styling by creating outfits for different occasions that are relevant to a college student by using the same pieces to show how they can be re-worked for different occasions.  I designed a "going to school look," "going to a internship/interview" and "going out at night."  I incorporated fabric swatches and colors into my sketches.

Lastly, in order to create my hooded dress, I needed to take sewing lessons.  I took many lessons and worked on altering the existing pattern to my liking.  After about 8 hours, I created my hooded dress out of linen! If I were to re-do my dress, I would probably use silk, but I'll have to wait until I get better on the sewing machine.  

 Sorry about my dog in the way! 

And finally, my invitations for my project! I called my project "Behind the Seams" and created these to hand out to my teachers/family/friends.  

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