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I have been sampling like mad for the dress design for Harvey Nichols. My samples have been based on the patterns I have developed by playing with cropping and repeats of the photos I took of signs across the college campus:

We have been asked to explore a wide range of techniques. I have explored the following:

  1. Printing using stencil & opaque ink
  2. Printing using screen printing & opaque ink
  3. Aqua suede applied using stencil and heat press for 1 minute
  4. Foiling using bonda web
  5. Foiling using adhesive applied through stencil
  6. Flocking using bondaweb
  7. Flocking using adhesive applied through stencil
  8. Appliqué using bonda web
  9. Machine embroidery and printing
  10. Reverse appliqué

Some of the most successful techniques included flocking and printing with aqua suede printing ink.

Purple aqua suede:

Stencil printing:

Here are some of the samples which have been mounted in my sketchbook:

 

Over the last two weeks we have been finalising designs for our shirts and pattern cutting. I have gone for a very prim and simple shirt with peter pan collar and bishop sleeves. My accessory of the origami flowers will then sit on top – probably buttoned onto a detachable bib/tie. Photos to follow shortly.

On the design side of things here are some of my sketchbook designs in progress…

Shirt with reversible pussy style bow:

Oversized handkerchief bow detail:

Bias binding edging using print inspired from origami papers:

Shirt with origami flower accessory/boa:

As part of our professional practice unit, we also have a visit from Chloe and Mhairi at bebaroque. bebaroque design and make gorgeous printed and embroidered tights:

I was really inspired by them both and hearing them made the whole idea of having my own business a little less abstract and scary!

A new knitting boutique has recently opened in Edinburgh called K1 yarns. Stocking lots of locally produced Scottish yarns I ended up coming away with the most gorgeous skein of Old Maiden Aunt’s cashmere / silk 2 ply in Cherry. I decided that I definately wanted to feel the soft texture against my neck but was fed up of making conventional scarves.

I then remembered the cowl lace rib pattern on Purl Bee. Knitted in the round with addi turbo needles I initally found the knitting hard work as my points were not very sharp and my stitches were too tight. After loosening up I got into the rythm of the pattern and enjoyed the wonderful cherry red yarn going through my hands. However my cowl ended up pretty wide!

The good news is that it was long enough to go round my neck twice which actually added more body and warmth to the whole scarf.

And this being Scotland I think that I will be getting lots of wear out of it before Summer begins…

One of the key pieces of work that we need to complete this term is the graded unit. This project is to be completed in our own time as part of a self directed project to design a dress for Harvey Nichols.

I have made a start by researching a potential customer group (The Yummy Mummy) and looking at relevent designers and artists based on brands stocked by Harvey Nichols and designers that relate to the trend of Vigour.

See by Chloe:

 Pattern with Eley Kishimoto, Vivienne Westwood, Dolce and Gabbana and Moschino:

 

 Celia Birtwell and Chloe Sevigny:

 

 Orla Kiely, Totty Rocks and Concrete Wardrobe:

My favourite designer – Odd Molly:

Cath Kidston and Antoni & Alison:

Irish Avoca Anthology and Whistles:

Artist Julian Opie and photos of the Telford campus:

All of which will lead to my mood-board and designs for the dress.

 

This was a week to finish and finalise our shirt and accessory designs. I really got into my flow when I started experimenting with the origami flowers for my accessory.

I started off with a basic flower using white cotton shirting fabric backed with heavy duty vilene.

  

And going back to the original inspiration I tried using some super sized dollars – first in paper:

And then in fabric (using white spirit under the heat press):

Experimenting with different sizes and creating a scarf/ruffle:

And unable to resist gathering all the flowers together… Chelsea flower show?

 Really pleased with how these have turned out and all the possibilities of combining them – over sized corsages, ruffles, scarfs, boa…