Can’t draw for toffee, but hot on the pattern table

There is no doubt about it. It’s unavoidable. I shall have to face up to the fact….. I can’t 2D design for toffee. I can see it in my head, I know how it should look and when I make it, it always comes out the way it is supposed to. But on paper it looks RUBBISH! Give me free hand to pattern cut though – a length of calico, a mannequin and a packet of pins and I’m away. We can’t all design the way the educators would like us to.

I wish I was good at illustrating. It’s letting the side down badly when it comes to presenting my work and notching up grades, and I can see the pained expressions on my lecturers faces as they try to understand from my childlike scrawl what it is I am trying to tell them.

I am incredibly jealous of folks like Kathryn Elyse and her beautiful work on PaperFashion. If I could design like this I’d be laughing but perhaps I wouldn’t be so good at the sewing? Who knows….. The images she creates – the clothing, the personality of the figures – all come to life when she has a pencil in her hand.

This is the sort of thing I am talking about.

The question is, how to get around it. After all I have to design for the next 9 months and then put together a rocking portfolio for Graduate Fashion Week. Although I may get away with the really clever presentation stuff once I’m out on my own.

We aren’t marked down for using templates so I am sorely tempted to cut up bits of cool images I find on the internet and piece them together into the models I want. I won’t pass them off as my own – they won’t look anything like drawn models – but is this wrong or is it simply a way of expressing what I need to say with a little help from more talented colleagues?

Borrowing someone else’s work is the greatest compliment apparently – it means it’s good but I would never pass anything off as my own. So I am always very interested in the way other designs do their flat work collections.

There are some very interesting alternatives out there. Some of these are from uber famous designers. Others not…..

 Yves Saint Laurent
 Brooke Hagel
 Alisa Zaytseva

A selection of styles, all conveying very different messages but all basically doing the same job. You know what the clothing is going to look like.

As I start making my illustration collages (as they are most likely to be) I will add a few and you can see where I’m going. Just for the record, this is the sort of thing I’m having to improve upon. You may notice an absence of faces, hands and feet. Guess which bits I struggle with the most!


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