Friday, June 11, 2010

Fashion Design I

I know nothing about fashion design but I do know a little bit about sewing weird stuff. 

When someone from the Kingwood branch of the Lonestar Community College System called and asked me to teach a class on Fashion Design, I said that I couldn't do it as I knew nothing about Fashion Design.

They then sent me the syllabus and class outline, I still said no.  The class description had things in it like fashion sketching and reviewing jobs in the fashion industry.  Again, I said No.

They finally said that  I could teach anything I wanted as long as it had some sewing in it.  I finally said yes.

Then I found out that a dear friend, who I worked with at the middle school knitting club last year, had recommended me for the job so I knew someone knew how unfashionable I am.

BTW, all of this took place the Wednesday and Thursday the week before the class started.

Friday, before class, a dear friend and her grandson helped me shop for fabric and supplies, Saturday and Sunday I packed 25 reusable shopping bags with supplies for the week and on Monday I got up at 5:30 AM to get ready for class.

The class was offered twice a day, four hours each session for four days in a row.

Despite my extreme wariness of this whole experience, I had a blast last week and, I think, the kids did as well.

The morning session had 8 12 - 14 year-old grials and the afternoon session had 15 9 - 11 year-old girls.

My approach was to introduce them to the materials used in fashion and how to change them and sew them into something useful.

Our frst day project was to make a tag for their goody bags.  We started with each of them choosing a picture from Vogue magazine as an inspiration piece.  They then made a sketch of a tag inspired by the picture.  They used the sketch as the basis for making a tag using muslin, fusible fabrics, colord pencils, and hand embroidery to make a tag.

From there we went on to making phone/iPod cases, purses, tote bags and tried to get started on bog coats.  The girls had such creativity that they baically ran with any ideas I had and took them to a new level.  Some even ended up making fabric collages as quilt tops on the last day from fusible fabric scraps...amazing! 

By the end of the four days they had used up about 60 yards of fabric, 50 skiens of floss, 22 sewing machine needles, 10 yards of quilt batting, many yards of tulle and organza ( a whole story in and of itself), yarn, upholstery samples, vintage linens, Sharpies, fabric paint pens, glitter, beads, thread and many hand sewing needles.  They also brought in a lot of their own fabric, an old Jasmine costume and a pair of pink silk oriental style pajamas that all made their way into some wonderful creations.

My stash is now smaller, which is a good thing and the only casualties of the week were my old iron (looks like there is chewing gum on it) and my big ironing board (which is covered with glue and glitter).  These are a small price to pay for all the creativity that happened in a portable clasroom on the Kingwood College Campus last week.

I hope I get a chance to do this again.  

If you are on Facebook you can see photos at!/photo.php?pid=4199103&id=191541494548.    

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