Sunday, 24 June 2012

This week was the "Mid Cheshire College Fashion show" where 12 months of my work was exhibited through my final dress. 
The show ran both Thursday and Friday evening at the Winsford Lifestyle centre. 

Here are some "behind scenes photos'

Preparation for the fashion show 

Ash on set..

Here is my dress, on the thursday night. Just before the dress went down the catwalk I used black thread and did three tacking stitches in the puff sleeve to add extra volume.

Table layout for Friday night

Dress from the front

Dress from the back

Dress from the back

With my model

Beth and her model

Lissy and Beth

Me and Lissy

Ash's dress and model


Lissy modelling wedding dress collection

Lissy, Bobbie, Me and Libby

Nicole, Lissy and Me


Professional Photo's taken by Photography Students;

Overall I really enjoyed the fashion show, and was pleased with my garment. It was amazing to see the work, effort, preparation, time and money that is all fuelled into running a fashion show, and experience that first hand. Seeing my initial design, transform into a dress and be able to visualise it on the catwalk was also outstanding and gets me exited for next year!

I also enjoyed the behind scenes preparation, working with the models dressing them and ensuring they are suitable to go onto the catwalk. Although I was worried about the quick changes, and ensuring that my model was ready the adrenaline takes over and you just have to keep up and do it!

Ever since my drawing brief in college, I have carried round a small sketch book with me and have sketched quick drawings using fine liner. One main reason I have done this, is to build up my confidence with drawing.

 Here are two of my favourites....

These are both from a Yohji Yamamoto exhibition I went to at the V&A in London. I was really inspired by his innovative collection, and being able to see first hand (rather than in a magazine or digitally) the construction and details within his garment. Here I sketched two of my favourite designs.

Fittings Week

Last week was fittings week, where we all had a set time to fit to our models. When I tried my garment on my first model it was too small and I could not get the neck of the bodice over her head, this was also repeated on my second model which indicated that the neck of my garment was clearly too small!
To problem solve, I cut 1cm off around the neck and then adapted my patterns to match, I then tried my garment on the third model and it fitted around the neck. I did however have to adjust the waist and back.

To adapt my garment, I unpicked the waist band and zip I then cut of either side of the zip where I had placed my pins in fittings, this was around 3.5cm.

I first of all took off, around 1cm each side. I then needed to take a further 2.5cm off each side. 

Here you can see where I have pinned, to fit it to the model. To adapt the bodice I unpicked the back panels of the bodice and increased the seam allowance to 3.5cm and stitched back up.

Once I had fitted it and adapted my garment too the model, I then was able to attach the roles to the front and back.

Monday, 18 June 2012



Sew darts in Front panel
Create and attach roles
Sew back panels together and over lock seams together, attach and make back roles
Insert invisible zip in
Sew both shoulder seems and over lock together
Over lock each side of right side shoulder
Sew the two shoulder seams together, and over lock to close seam
Stitch the bottom of the puff to the flat sleeve ad top stitch
Tack rest of sleeve to sleeve head
To close the left sleeve up over lock seams together
Attach the whole of left armhole and over lock raw edges
Put right sleeve in, over lock sleeve head and stitch under arm into side of body and over lock
Attach facing


Underskirt - sew front darts in underskirt
Sew back darts in underskirt
Insert zip in centre back
Stitch up the centre back seam, stopping where the zip would go and over lock seam
Stitch side seams and over lock together
Create puff ball and gather
Attach puff ball hem to the hem of underskirt
Interface the waistband
Attach waistband

Wednesday, 13 June 2012

These are the roles that will feature on the front of my garment, to finish them of neatly I ironed under the raw edges and folded them under twice at 1cm and topstitched.
I then sewn the roles onto the front of my bodice, straight down the middle.

I have now begun to manufacture my final garment, here is the skirt completed. A problem I faced whilst constructing the skirt was, gathering the skirt. Because the skirt hem length was such a large scale my threads where snapping as I was gathering.
To problem solve this, I had to split it up into sections, sewing so far gathering then repeating this process.

Here is my skirt finished, and ready to be fitted to my model.

Once I have fitted my skirt, to the model I will put a hook and eye on the waistband.

I then begun to manufacture, my top. The difficult area was manufacturing the puff sleeves as again the thread kept snapping whilst I was gathering. As I had already overcome this problem whilst manufacturing my skirt I new how to solve it. 

Here is one of my sleeves, complete. I also did a retainer row around the bottom of my puff ball.

Here is my finished bodice, I cannot apply the facings to the neck or hem until I have fitted the bodice to the model.

I am going to do a series of hand stitches on the sleeve, as you can see on the right. This gives it more volume, and reflects my theme further.

Monday, 4 June 2012


Yesterday I visited Manchester, to choose my fabric for my final garment, when choosing my fabric I had to consider my target market which is Ready To Wear.

Bearing this in mind, I choose a duchess satin that will feature on the skirt, and the sleeve head. I also got a polyester mix that I will use for the sleeve body and bodice. I did run out of money, and although polyester doesn't reflect my target market it has the same finish as a fabric I would have brought it money was no object!

Duchess satin on the left

Fabric I choose for the roles on the front.

I have now, eventually completed my toile! I enjoyed manufacturing this, as it enabled me to see my design come to life. It also helped to eradicate any problems I would have faced, whilst working in my final fabric.

After reviewing my toile, I have decided that I would like to add more volume to the skirt, I am also going to put the roles that feature on the front on the back also. I will now adapt my pattern pieces, ready to work with for my final fabric!