Fabric Manipulation

• Take an active role in fabric manipulation.

• Develop structuring ideas that drive your designs.

• Ensure your fabric development is in line with fashion trends.

Couture Fabric Manipulation

the process

Gather research images using drawing and photography, and identify the key shapes and structures. Treating your

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page as a piece of fabric, start to sketch out structuring ideas. Don't worry at this stage about the practicalities of achieving the effects; just let your imagination run wild. Still working on paper, experiment with methods such as gluing, stapling, hand and machine stitching, cutouts, and appliqué. Remember that you are looking for ideas that will support the construction of the garments.

Now think about how these first thoughts can be translated onto fabric. You could create a fastening using fabric ties. Stitching and gluing could be the means of structuring a finished garment or might provide seaming ideas. Layering, pleating, and draping are

A A Analyze your source

Choose a source, like this biker theme, that will Inspire ideas about texture, volume, and construction to guide you when structuring fabric to create a silhouette.

▼ Fashionable use of fabric

It Is important to keep a close eye on what is happening to fabric structuring within the world of fashion. What are the other designers doing? What are the key trends? Such considerations will stop you from becoming overly self-indulgent.

T Building a new fabric

You can structure fabric by attaching small pieces together to create an overall design. Explore these ideas on paper.

Design Cutting Fabric

all ways of creating volume in a garment. You might consider how cutting fabric on the bias (placing pattern pieces at a 45-degree angle to the fabric selvages and grain) would affect structure. Bias-cut fabric has far greater drape than usual and clings to the body in a very flattering and feminine way when used in skirts and dresses.

You could even build up a completely new fabric, using techniques such as crochet, patchwork, or knitting.

Remember to keep an eye on the work of other designers. All these wonderful effects should not distract you from the fashion overview.

Finally, select your strongest roughs to use in putting together a collection of finished designs structured around your experiments in fabric manipulation and distortion.

▼ Fashionable use of fabric

It Is important to keep a close eye on what is happening to fabric structuring within the world of fashion. What are the other designers doing? What are the key trends? Such considerations will stop you from becoming overly self-indulgent.

SELF-CRITIQUE

• Have you created unique and original structuring ideas?

• Does your fabric manipulation reflect your research?

• Are the fabrics appropriate to the fashion silhouettes?

• Are your concepts disciplined and truly fashionable— have you avoided being self-indulgent?

T Building a new fabric

You can structure fabric by attaching small pieces together to create an overall design. Explore these ideas on paper.

Polar Theme Inspired Knit Collection

•4 T Driving the design

Structuring ideas inspired by this Arctic theme include knitted snowtlake stitches and the use of chunky fabric to create a bulky, hooded outline (shown below right). Thorough research will yield ideas about volume, shape, and proportion.

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The construction of these garments has been driven by the structuring of fabric, whether through the building up of new textiles or the manipulation of existing fabric to create volume and shape. Thinking about how fabric will behave when shaped into a garment naturally leads to a more detailed consideration of the garment itself. Designers need to be aware of the structural nature of different fabrics and incorporate them into their fashion ideas accordingly. Bulky knitwear, for example, can be designed only into certain shapes, and is bound to be heavy and hot. Clinging jerseys, on the other hand, will mold around the body, and fine velvets will drape into soft folds. The behavior of fabric can be explored by molding samples around the curves of a dressmaker's stand, or around a real body, using a volunteer. If the fabric has a complex structure—an ornate crocheted pattern, for example—it is important to remember that the silhouette should be kept simple in order to avoid a confused overall effect.

T Structure and embellishment

Knitted stitches can be used to give the garment volume as well as surface decoration.

Fabric Manipulation Ideas

Methods of fabric manipulation such as folding, pleating, and draping can be used to give volume and shape to relatively simple fabrics.

COMMUNICATING YOUR VISION

The most wonderful ideas and stylish drawing techniques will count for nothing if you cannot present your designs effectively. This chapter explains how to support your illustrations with flat working drawings and represent your ideas as three-dimensional garments. You will also learn how to create professional-looking presentation boards, to choose the most appropriate illustration style for your work, and to communicate your vision clearly, accurately, and with maximum impact.

Fashion Design Presentation Boards

A This image of a Juiien Macdonald design is infused with the glamor of the catwalk—why not capture your own work at a college end-of-year fashion show? (See page 123.)

Dress Making

Dress Making

Rock your personality in a dress you made yourself that reflects who you are, not what a department store thinks you want. Discover The Beginners Guide to Making Your Own Dress. You do not have to wear off the rack dresses any longer. You can make your own fashion statement on the world.

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