Promostyl-influenced mood board

Ever wondered why "all-look-same" when you go shopping for clothes?  Blame it on the trend forecasters!  At college, we use a French company called Promostyl who for an exhorbitant fee will send you a big folder full of the next big things.  They boil down a fashion season into a dozen concepts and even provide colour palettes so that textile manufacturers can start producing fabrics in the "it" colours for Summer 2013.

Here's my mood board from which I'll draw up some design developments, draft patterns, make toiles and sew up a collection.  All by June.  Wish me luck!


Photo Shoot!

Thank you to the lovely Emily and her mum, Margo for taking these lovely shots of one of my college projects. 

Emily is a student who entered a modelling competition and did very well, even taking out Miss Congeniality (the best award!)

For some more images from the shoot take a look at Burda Style here.


From mood board to final design!

Here's my mood board inspired by some beautiful lampshades from industrial designer Tord Boontje.






It prompted a series of design developments.  One of which was made up on a half scale mannequin.  Then there was the pattern making and experimenting with constructing a pinata of an underskirt in boning and mesh.  Then the 40 white leaves were glued in place and Ta Da!  It all looks so easy when some gorgeous young thing like Emily is wearing the final result!


Have yourself a merry little handmade Christmas...

I love getting handmade Christmas presents!  I know it takes a lot more effort than dashing into the shops, but I think it's worth it.  Here are some I made this year - a make up purse and handbag from Yuka Koshizen's book Carry Me. (not for beginners, but very inspiring!)  And a sweet pinafore cloned from another of my niece Elke's little frocks...


At the Afesip Fair Fashion workshop...

The gang at Afesip Fair Fashion in their showroomHere I am in Cambodia!  That's me on the left, visiting an amazing social enterprise called AFESIP Fair Fashion.  Prostitution is a huge business in Cambodia, with many unwilling participants.  Afesip Fair Fashion workshop employs rescued sex workers who are starting a new life and career in my favourite occupation, sewing.


AFF Production roomThe AFF workshop is light, clean and airy.  No sweatshop conditions here!

Looking through racks of patterns with Mr Rotha, the operations manager Everyone sews complete garments (ie.  it's not piece work where you sew, say, zillions of zips all day long.)  It's slower (maybe only one or two garments finished in a day) but teaches girls great all-round sewing skills that they could use to set up their own businesses.

A couple of older ladies look after all the kids in a room upstairsI loved the great conditions - free childcare, accident and health insurance, trainees receive a decent wage (comparable to a policeman's.)  Wish all my clothes were made by this workshop!