18 Mar 2011
Handmade Fabrics at Alexander McQueen

Alexander McQueen, AW11, Paris. As good as full length catwalk images are, they only go part way into showing how clever the designers and their teams really are. The best thing about viewing catwalk photography online now, is that we have access to close-up images of the runway shows so...

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17 Mar 2011
High Rounded Necklines and Collar Variations

Jil Sander, AW11, Milan. There are so many details that come together to make up the collections each season that sometimes it is interesting to just hone in on one detail. By flicking through the collection images looking only at shoulder shapes, hem lines or closures, you start to notice...

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16 Mar 2011
Grading Rulers and French Curves

Grading ruler and set of french curves. No self respecting pattern maker likes to be without an accurate ruler. The best rulers for pattern making are made of strong clear plastic and have a grid across the whole ruler making it easy to accurately mark seam allowance. Clear grid rulers,...

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15 Mar 2011
Sequins Reimagined

Sequin swatches from the AW11 collections of Prada, Louis Vuitton, Comme des Garçons, Rodarte and Christopher Kane. Sometimes even the most beautiful things can end up ruined by over use. Sequins can conjure up a vision of the most glamourous and labour intensive evening dresses and also evoke memories of...

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14 Mar 2011
Dai Fujiwara for Issey Miyake: Process as Presentation

Issey Miyake, AW11, Paris. Often when designers present their work it seems that the aim is to make the process look as effortless as possible. So sometimes it’s nice when labels such as Comme des Garcons and Margiela leave little traces of the process behind in the work as a...

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11 Mar 2011
Removable Stitching in Tailored Garments

Lanvin, AW11, Paris. Sometimes when people buy tailored garments they are unsure about whether or not they are meant to remove what are know as tailors tacks (large loose stitching) so the following image will examine why those stitches are there, so that you know what to look out for....

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10 Mar 2011
Carefully considered fastenings at Yves Saint Laurent

Yves Saint Laurent, AW11, Paris. It seems to be an easy mistake to make to leave the garment fastenings until last when designing and sampling a collection. But there are so many benefits to working your closures and fastenings into the design right from the pattern stage. For a start,...

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09 Mar 2011
Overlocked edges at Comme des Garcons

Comme des Garçons, AW11, Paris. Half the fun of looking at a Comme des Garçons collection is in looking at the way Rei Kawakubo turns normal sewing rules upside down. Don’t expect to see seams in usual places, easily discernible boundaries between garments or overly laboured couture techniques - it’s...

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08 Mar 2011
Yohji Yamamoto’s Wool Top Hair

Yohji Yamamoto, AW11, Paris. The hair styling for the Yohji Yamamoto Autumn-Winter 2011 show was amazingly colourful and made the models look a little like elfish troll dolls. Of course we can’t be sure what they used for the this show, without feeling the models hair and peering through the...

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07 Mar 2011
Fundamentals of Pattern Making: Viktor & Rolf Dart Clusters

Viktor and Rolf, AW11, Paris. Once you know the dart value that you need to have in your pattern you can then move this value around, as we saw when we moved the value from a waist dart to a bust dart. There is no reason however that the dart...

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04 Mar 2011
Pattern Tool Box: Awl

Pattern awl. While there are many times where markings on a pattern can be indicated with small notches in the seam allowance. The partner tool for marking patterns, which can be used for the rest of the the pattern, is the awl. The awl is used to piece through the...

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03 Mar 2011
How Many Fabrics in the Dries Van Noten Show?

Dries Van Noten, AW11, Paris. Considering how many designers have been successfully combining unbelievable print combinations this season, it was time to abstract the textiles away from the clothes to see how many prints and textures and colours they really are using.

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