Hello for the last time!
I know it’s sad, but Precollege classes have come to an end. It has been an absolute pleasure blogging for all of you. I am thrilled that I could take another FIT Precollege class as well as blog this year. I learned so much and had a blast!
My last day was dedicated to finishing up the men’s shirts we’d been working on all semester and celebrating our achievements. After all these weeks, I have a newfound appreciation for the work that goes into making a dress shirt.
I am proud of the shirt I made. Bright yellow isn’t a color I normally wear, but I put so much time into making this garment that I feel obliged to wear it at some point. I may also just give it to someone who is more likely to wear it. I spent my last half hour sewing colorful buttons, which I found at Mood Fabrics, up the front and on the cuffs. I was also very excited to use a special sewing machine for the buttonholes. Everything is so much easier when one has the appropriate tools and supplies!
Although we all made the same size shirt, every student chose their own fabric. This meant that every shirt was unique. Some people made long-sleeved versions and others made short-sleeved shirts. Everyone used different patterned and colored fabrics. I like that we were allowed this creative freedom.
I feel like a much stronger sewer after taking this menswear sewing class. I’ve also been reminded, as I always am, that it’s best to measure twice and cut once. I could have saved myself a lot of frustration.
Well, I hope you had as much fun taking classes as I did. A new set of Precollege classes and workshops are just around the corner.
I will miss FIT next year, but I hope to stay in contact with its wonderful community.
After so many weeks of cold weather, it’s finally time for a wardrobe change! New York summers are hot and sweaty, but they are also filled with fabulous summer outfits. Practicality influences fashion choices and designs. It isn’t just a coincidence that summer clothes are made out of lighter fabrics such as linen and cotton; summer clothes are made from these fabrics because they keep you cool. Winter clothes are often made out of darker and thicker materials because they generate warmth. This theme continues regarding the other seasons.
I decided to take a trip to FIT on Thursday, and I photographed some fun summer clothes! I am going to share a couple with you. The gold shoes caught my attention first. I like their delicacy and simplicity. I thought they were a cute combination with her short, white dress. The whole outfit was very elegant. I’m happy she agreed to let me take her picture, so I get to share her style with all of you. The next person I saw embracing the glorious weather was dressed in a Polka dotted dress. She had matching heels and a handbag. I like the bold red and black combination.
I like getting ideas for my own design and outfits by observing what others wear and how they combine different colors and garments. There are a million ways to get dressed in the morning; why not try something new?
This week, I went to the new fashion exhibit, Art of the In-Between, at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The exhibit showed work by fashion designer Rei Kawakubo, the founder of Comme des Garçons, which translates to “as the boys”. Rei Kawakubo studied fine arts and aesthetics at Keio University in Tokyo, but she does not have a traditional fashion education. She began by designing clothes for women and later began designing men’s clothing as well. She focuses on mobility and comfort in her designs.
Rei Kawakubo challenges our western definition of beauty. When you walk into the exhibit, the first garments that you see are these red dresses. The cloth is wrapped and layered in such a way that there are large lumps that distort the figure. I immediately noticed how this strayed from the traditional hourglass figure one sees accentuated in a majority of woman’s couture. Rei’s designs each have a unique shape that has nothing to do with highlighting one’s physical features. They are works of art that happen to be wearable. Rei once said,“For something to be beautiful, it doesn’t have to be pretty.” This is exactly what I observed. Every garment I saw had beauty and power, but none of them were pretty. “Beauty is whatever one thinks is beautiful.” – Rei Kawakubo, I agree that beauty is subjective, and everyone has a unique definition of what beauty means. Art of the In-Between made me think about my own definitions of beauty and how beauty is sometimes inexplicable.
Since I am taking a menswear class, I noticed her use of men’s clothing. There were multiple garments that she had created by cutting up suits and reconfiguring them. After being disassembled, the garments no longer seemed to have genders. I enjoy observing how designers combine men and woman’s couture. I myself want to experiment using classic men’s suit jacket collars in woman’s clothing.
I also noticed her use of fabric and color. She used a lot of blacks, reds, pinks, and whites which seemed influenced by classic European styles. I also was reminded of Victorian era dresses by a few of the garments. I think this was due to their heavy and luxurious fabric.
The exhibit will be open until September 4, so I encourage you all to go check it out for yourselves!
I’ve recently been thinking about what inspires me and more specifically what inspires me when I sew.
Over the weekend, I soaked up fresh air and sunshine by taking a walk through Central Park. Spring is one of my favorite seasons because of all the beautiful colors. Spring also happens to be my birthday season!
As I strolled through the park, I took in all the lovely springtime colors: the clear blue water of the reservoir, the bursts of pink and white apple and cherry blossoms, the bright yellow tulips colored like egg yolks, and the fresh green leaves and grass that give the park its green haze.
Colors are an important aspect of fashion. Although you will often find me wearing blacks and grays, I enjoy using bright fabrics when I sew or design clothing. In my FIT menswear class, I am currently making a dress shirt using yellow fabric. I thought this would be a fun and an appropriate color for a spring shirt.
Nature is definitely a source of inspiration for me not only in my sewing but in other areas of my life as well. There is something invigorating about simply breathing a breath of fresh air, or I may just be a nature-deprived New Yorker and subsequently romanticize every leaf, twig, and flower I lay eyes on.
There are many things that inspire me, and not necessarily to do something specific. They just imbue me with an energy and motivation to learn and create new things. I realized that another main source of inspiration is visual and performing art. In our society, art plays the important role of inspiring others. I draw hope, happiness, and motivation from all art forms. There are more things such as lectures, feelings, and experiences that also motivate me. All the above lift my spirits and keep me working towards doing something that maybe one day will inspire others.
- What inspires you?
- Do you also like to walk through parks people-watching and soaking in fresh are and colors?
- Where do you draw inspiration from for your fashion designs?
Three of my pieces from my first class at FIT!
Change…it’s a loaded word, isn’t it? Many people are hesitant to step into new situations, embark on uncharted waters. But, in our ever-evolving society, change is something we need to embrace. FIT has helped me to cultivate this mindset by teaching me that change can be a catalyst for creativity and positivity. As I travel into the city each week for class, I am kept on my toes by the dynamic developments occurring in today’s fashion industry.
A unique design from one of FIT’s curated museum exhibits. I love how this piece challenges typical fashion through its asymmetrical shape, unique pattern, and beautiful butterfly detail!
Much like New York City, the world of fashion and art is something that transforms every day, every hour, every minute. Being surrounded by such knowledgeable professors and talented peers who have my same passion for this exhilarating field challenges me to think outside of the box and explore new ideas in my own artistic journey. When I sat down in my first FIT class three years ago as a nervous freshman in high school who loved to sew, my perception of fashion was relatively limited to what I personally thought was aesthetically pleasing. As time went on and I enrolled in more classes, however, I learned that fashion was so much more than beautiful clothing; it is an art form that represents the evolution of culture.
This is a Charles James design I saw at the MET a few summers ago. At the time this piece was created, it was completely breaking customary fashion (and societal) boundaries!
My time at FIT has taught me to question social norms and challenge complacency, both in my creations and in daily life. I challenge all of you to step outside of your comfort zones in your artwork and embrace the excitement of change. To quote the great CoCo Chanel, “Fashion is not something that exists in dresses only. Fashion is in the sky, in the street, fashion has to do with ideas, the way we live, what is happening.”
Talk to you next week!