I came to be involved with Fashion in my early teaching days at Newbury College. I was teaching basic Design classes such as Color Theory and Basic 2D/3D Design. The Dean at the time called me into his office and told me he needed a teacher for Fashion Drawing Classes and Figure Drawing for Fashion Designers. “You can do this,” he said as he kept layering books in my arms, one on top of the other. “Go study up.”
“But, I don’t know anything on this subject” had no meaning to him.
I did go home and study, and I became hooked. I worked with students who were great at making clothes but needed a lot of help understanding the human form. They needed help in understanding different gestural ways to draw and put their own signature on their designs.
I invented my own tools for teaching “croquis “or fashion figures based on measurement. I went on to teach in many college programs courses in Fashion Industry, Figure Drawing for Fashion Students, Men’s Wear, Children’s Wear. Fashion Sketching, and Portfolio Design to name a few.
The great fashion designer, like great artists derive their inspiration from many sources, such as nature, famous art, music, architecture or popular culture. They create wearable art that is for everyday wear or the runway. Our great art museums have caught on to the beauty and power, which is Fashion, by exhibitions that show the parallels of fashion and art.
It is with this knowledge that I have prepared our Fashion Classes at my school. These are not just sewing classes. They are not just Fashion Illustration classes. We seek to instill in our students what it takes to create their unique designs and style. Projects that challenge their conceptual thinking are used, while keeping them focused on becoming as technically proficient in their sewing skills. As Mimi, my Fashion Sewing teacher says, “Do you want Wal-Mart, or Vera Wang!”