Saturday, December 27, 2008

Friday, December 12, 2008

Finished Jacket

So after a manic three days of sewing machine rushes and iron queeing, I finally got my jacket finished! The lining cost more than double the wool, but took less than half the time to construct. Lining the draped pockets was the most complicated part, because until I actually sat down to sew I hadn't thought about it methodically. I'm going to make this jacket up in some nicer fabric and hopefully learn how to make a bra out of the lining fabric!
Inspiration pictures: Miss Selfridges and

I absolutely love my course (fda fashion) because I can do projects that help my self development as well as working towards my BA qualification.
The next and final unit is called Professional Project. I will be making a Summer collection for Beales to sell in July. I'm also looking into doing a project running alongside it where I will be creating convertible luggage/ jackets !

Friday, December 5, 2008

Back to Brushos

If there's one thing Gloscat college did teach me, it's how to use brushos.
For my Jacket illustration I decided the best way to communicate the wool texture would be through brushos (also watercolours are waay too hard)

Brushos are like powder paints, but more like an ink than a paint. It creates a dye when dissolved in water, and when sprinkled onto wet paper bleeds colour out. After a year or so I have seen the purple fade a bit, but while it lasts it looks fantastic. The results vary alot, sometimes the colours are too dull, this tends to be linked to the amount of water applied, so you have to use quite thick paper to avoid rippling.
Heres my first attempt illustration before putting it onto a mood board.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Trendsetting Chicken Legs!?

Well I'm not on about fashion models having the skinniest legs ever - I'm talking about leather. I went to a presentation at Uni yesterday and saw all kinds of leather. It started off with sheep, sheep fur -Spanish, Italian and British. The British sheep skin is extremely popular in Russia where they make thick warm coats from it.
Then we saw pig suede in pink ad blue, then Goat's suede which was considerably finer and smaller.
The cow hide was huge! It was thicker and tougher than all the others. When the skin is removed from the meat (most leather is a bi product - the animal was bred for meat) it goes to a tannery. At the tannery they have to treat it to put in artificial oils and other substances that got lost when the skin died, otherwise the skin would fall apart within days. 70% of leather is dyed black. This process can take up to 3 weeks because you have to dry the leather naturally which in itself can take up to 3 days. When leather is dyed, the napped side has to go through a different treatment in order to keep it from scratching and soaking in water. You often see leather that is shinny, patent, metallic or foiled. This has been created by sealing a film over the napped side of the leather.

We then saw leather made from ostrich - one skin costing a massive £300! Alligator skins - apparently not illegal when it was bred for meat. This skin had a special tag on it to tell you everything you need to know about the particular animal to ensure you it is not an endangered species. 

The bottom left skin in the above photo is a sting ray skin. The bubble looking texture is actually hundreds of bone. The bright yellow skin is made from ostrich legs! This in the past has been used by students to make coat panels. The brown skin in the background is cow hide.

Above: Eel skins! Sewn together in panels.
Below: Clockwise from top left brown skin eel skin, black and white python skin, black python,brown eel skin, brown cow hide, brown ostrich leg and yellow chicken leg leather! 

W also saw cow stomach leather and skunk fur. All extremely fascinating but by the end of the session I became slowly aware of all of the dead animals lying on the table...

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Jacket - Update

Today I started to cut out my jacket in final fabric. At the beginning I was optimistic about the colour change (from blue to purple) but 12 hours of staring at it has driven me crazy - it now looks like carpet to me and I can't wait to breathe fresh air away from it - it even Smells purple!

The lining pattern was printed parallel to the selvage. It was also available printed at a 90 degree angle, meaning that the patten had a stop and start point at every metre. (almost like a portrait and landscape option on fabric) This may have been a better option as to get the printed pattern facing the correct way for my pattern piece I had to line the straight grain up at a 90 degree angle so the grain runs horizontally rather than vertically. 

Just need to put he should pads in and sew the lining in tomorrow and I'm done. Photoshoot time!