Monday, June 26, 2017

Sometimes life is a bit crazy...

Life getting crazy + moving to a new place + personal chaos =  time off from blogging and sewing!

Things are settling down
Life is renormalizing
The brain is becoming calmer
Tension is slowly dissipating
My smile is returning
Creative energy is starting to stir


Sewing and designing is once again happening.

Regular blogging to commence soon!

Friday, March 31, 2017

In The Sketchbook- March 2017

Welcome to In the Sketchbook, a monthly look at fashion design sketches that we are working on for ourselves. Sketching garments on a personal croquis is a great way for the individual couture enthusiast to move beyond the use of commercial patterns and into a world of personalized design! It can be intimidating at first, but with a little bit of practice it becomes something you look forward to. Join us for a look of what we have going on In the Sketchbook! Brought to you by Wendy Grossman of Couture Counsellor and Steph King from Siouxzeegirl Designs.

This month I have 2 very different options for sketching that I often do. 
The first option is more of playing with an idea, quick sketching, adding notes, etc.. This can be done in pencil, marker, combinations.
The second option is more of a finalized sketch. It has gone through several iterations and this is is usually my final sketch of something that I really want to design and create. I almost always already have the fabric and am working in the colors that I will be using. This gets hung up on my cork board to keep the idea fresh in my head.

This is a mini notebook that Sarah Veblen gave to all of the attendees of her Design 1 class. I reduced the image of my croquis to fit in this little book and it is always in my purse. This lets me quickly pull it out and sketch some ideas if I see something that captures my interest. I often use this when I am on an airplane. I have my iPad with me and I keep a folder of inspiration photos and very often will go back through them and pick up new ideas that I want to try.

This idea for a pintuck panel at the bottom of a knit skirt came from inspiration photos that I took from the Mary Ray workshop I took in January. I think it will be a wonderful way to enhance a plain fabric. I also like the idea of a single side panel that incorporates a pocket.
Here you can see that I have jotted down several notes, including my thoughts on fabric type, construction ideas and general thoughts. this way when I go back to this at a later date it will jog my memory.

This one is also from inspiration from the Mary Ray workshop and it is a band at the bottom of the skirt with inset triangles. Again there are notes that include my ideas.
The same goes for the shirt sketch below- it is an idea to pair with the skirt and therefor making it a complete ensemble.
The really nice thing about all of these sketches is that they work right off of my master patterns and I can just add the details or make some minor changes without having to start from scratch.

This next set is playing with my markers and then into final sketches. Sometimes I just site and use the markers to play with ideas. I find that if I let my hands just go I can come up with quick ideas that capture the essence of the design I am thinking about... and sometimes it is just a mess! The thing about markers is that they are freeing, you can't go back and erase and change your mind. I just go quickly and see what happens.

Originally I was not even going to include this. However, I thought it might be nice to show that my first drafts are not always so nice at all! but they do capture the spirit of what I am going for.

The drawing on the left is the final iteration of the quick sketch on the previous marker drawing on the left. You can see here that I took my time refining it and adding in the details and the colors that I want to work in.
The dress on the right is just a line drawing with the design lines added in for a new iteration of a dress that I like. 

The dess on the right is an idea that I keep coming back to so I decided to really get the ideas and details added in and this will go on my to-do list. I have a beautiful chambray that will become this lovely summer shirtdress.
the dress on the left is playing with ideas for a sheath dress. I did not add in the marker yet because I have not decided on what fabrics I will like to use! 

Make sure to stop by Wendy Grossman of Couture Counsellor to see what lovely sketches and ideas she is working on. Please feel free to share your sketches and ideas, leave either of us a comment or just link back to one of our posts.

Happy Sketching!

Thursday, March 23, 2017

A hidden gem of a Museum with an amazing fashion exhibit!

 If you get a chance you really need to get over to The Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn, Michigan.
Much to my surprise the museum is not just all about cars! The complex is is comprised of The Henry Ford Museum of American Innovation as well as Greenfield Village, Ford Rouge Factory Tour and the Big Screen Experience. You could easily spend a full day at the complex.

Somehow Wendy found out about this fashion exhibit, American Style and Spirit, that is on display until April 2, 2017. It really is such a shame that the exhibit is not going for a longer period of time! It was an amazing exhibit. Such a wonderful collection from a single family in Wisconsin. Can you imagine having such a collection plus more stored in one attic! Not only did they have clothes but journals and receipts and photos and so much more. The curator has brilliantly set this exhibit up. In my experience this rivaled any top fashion exhibit I have seen, including those at the MET in NYC.
Wendy, Liz and I at the Henry Ford Museum

If you aren't able to get to see the exhibit the catalog that goes along with it is quite more than just a collection of photo's and descriptions. It is the story of the Roddis Family from 1850 to 1995. It is a great companion to the exhibit but goes into much more depth and includes more than just what is seen in Dearborn. Here is a link to resources where you can purchase this book.

Enough of my prattle! The rest of this post is photos. I took a huge amount of photos! There are an amazing amount of details and an endless amount of inspiration!

A photo of the general layout of the left side of the exhibit.

Collection of children's clothes.
 I love how every display has photos of  the family members in the clothing.

As you can see in this picture they had photo's from the time period along with many documents. 

This was a very interesting part of the exhibit! It showed dresses that were made by the family along with notebooks detailing their sewing notes and samples.
The rest of the photos are of dresses and outfits that I either loved or details that really interested me.

Are you inspired by fashion exhibits? I know that I sure am!!

Happy Sewing!