Time to Say Goodbye: Reflections, Regrets and Advice for Future Students

What a busy weekend I’ve had this spring, driving to New York every Saturday with my mom, who has been so devoted to waking me up at seven in the morning. I definitely could not have experienced Precollege Programs without the help of my mom. By this time, I can reflect about the things I regret and wish had done better over the past several weeks.

  1. Time management. There’s a blog I’ve written that is all about how I control my use of time, or at least attempt to, in the midst of a homework-packed schedule and extracurricular activities for school. Make sure you know what is happening in your life—create a calendar or use a schedule organizer on your phone to keep upcoming events on time. That way, you know when you have time to work on fashion sketching or whatever assignment from class.
  2. Transportation. Unfortunately, and I cringe at this, I never went on the train. I constantly claimed to plan to ride the train this weekend, but it never happened. For me, the problem was that I had other plans that conflicted with the train time schedule. Going to New York by our efficient Prius was definitely not a burden, but the train is much faster.
  3. Commitment. To succeed in the class, whether for designing, marketing, or sewing, put your heart into it! I love fashion and the magical feeling I get when I immerse myself in its world, but in order to apply the most of myself to a sketch I am working on, I need to plan ahead and save time.

These three factors in my experience are correlated, so think about these before you take class, and if it cannot be fit into your schedule, sign up for the summer classes. Don’t let a time problem thwart you from taking a class, especially if it has to do with your passion.

I can’t call myself a New Yorker yet, although I would love to live in the city one day after college. The city exuberates with vibrancy, and I soak up the atmosphere without taking it for granted. Anyone living close enough to commute to New York should take advantage of the proximity, so consider yourself lucky!

I’ll never forget the skills I have acquired and the time I have spent during the span of my two classes from last year and this spring. Thank you, FIT!

Jenn

Nearing the End of My Spring Semester…

One more class left after today! Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to go to today’s class or last week’s, but I’m still working on my final project.

Instead of browsing through the FIT museum or a fashion magazine, our task is to choose a non-fashion source such as architecture or interior sculpture for inspiration. I have to make two day-into-evening figures. What to do, what to do! So far, I’ve been looking through the stack of Better Homes and Gardens magazines my mom has and this new website I discovered called “apartment therapy.” I thought it’d be hard to morph the picture of a room into a clothing style, but I’ve been finding success so far, and I’ve written down all my ideas on a Post-it.

I hope to incorporate all that I’ve learned  into the final project. The previous projects were the first time that I had ever had to go to a fabric store, choose swatches, and make a professional display of my fashion figures. Now that I’ve experienced what it takes to make a good mood board and figure display, I really want to try my absolute best on this final project.

Wish me luck!

Jenn

My Love/Hate Relationship With Being Busy

I submitted my project today! I eventually ended up tweaking my original hot pink dress into a polk-a-dotted, red a-line with a shimmery hemline. I was extremely pleased with my project, especially since I only began last night at 10 P.M. I guess I have strong, solid stamina, because I lasted through the entire night until 5 A.M., when I finally completed all three of my illustrations. I know, I’m crazy.

Here are two of my drawings for my spring collection:

Day

A day dress with flair. Polk-a-dot cotton top.

Day into evening wear. Jumpsuit pants with a lace rib top and light leather jacket.

This is my life. In high school. Except last night was the latest I’ve stayed up until, so that’s a new personal record for me.

With homework day after day, hours of sports, and clubs, I feel overwhelmed maintaining a balance and finding success in all of my activities. I reassure myself, thinking it’s better to be busy than to be loafing around the hosue. After school, I always find myself fighting against the urge to sleep, which will only waste precious working time. Facebook only makes the situation works—I’m not an addict—but once you sign on, there’s almost no turning back, and my body’s sense of time becomes dysfunctional.

April Month Calendar

Marilyn Monroe for the month of April

Add on the pressure of standardized tests and the looming junior-year workload, and I must only be one thing: a teenage robot that lives her life accordingly to her blueprint, that is, my calendar. It hangs on my wall and I constantly update it with any upcoming events and meetings. Lately, I’ve been volunteering often in my community, so my weekends are always filled with something to do.

My fashion class definitely chews up most of my Saturdays, but it is definitely worth the time and effort. I have trouble finding time to practice designing, which happens usually on Friday nights before class, but as long as I use it wisely, I’ll be well on my way through the journey FIT has provided me!

Jenn

Gimme a (Spring) Break!…New York, I’m Coming

SPRING BREAK, SPRING BREAK, SPRING BREAK, SPRING BREAK!

That’s how I’ve been feeling since school ended today. I have an overwhelming amount of things to do over break, but this is the week when I finally get to sit down and immerse myself in my fashion work. Every weekend, I haven’t had time to review what I’d learned in class and actually start my class projects, but here I go!

I told you about my two projects, the Vivienne Westwood and the spring collection. I have to pick a period of time before the 1950s for my Westwood project. Honestly, until I intensely research, I have no idea which to choose. Any ideas?

Spring Collection

My preliminary sketch on tracing paper

With Color

I colored this quickly in class, but I might use this look for the spring collection. What do you think?

Pink and Gold Heels

Matching heels. Bottom is hot pink. Top is a gold metal buckle. (Color sketches done on marker paper)

I’m hoping to visit New York a second time this week to visit a store and get my fabric swatches for the project. While I walk around, I’d like to take a spring stroll through Soho- this will be my mini-vacation- because I’m trapped in New Jersey all week. I want to find inspirations for my spring outfits from the window displays of boutiques and the clothes themselves. One target store: Topshop.

The Alexander McQueen exhibition at the Met is coming up in early May, which would have been a great help for the pre-1950s era project, but nevertheless, I am definitely looking forward to that! Meanwhile, while I wait, I’ll explore the museum; you can spend a day in there and continue to find new exhibits and artwork. What a place.

The bulk of my weekdays will be spent in an arts center near my home. The instructors there teach younger children how to explore their creativity through several projects over the course of a week. I help out. This will be an interesting experience for me, as I’ll be able to see how children perceive and express art with their naive minds, unlike us teenagers and adults, who already have preconceptions about the world.

And as for some leisure time for myself, I’m on the lookout for a unique pair of flat sandals to last me all season! I don’t know whether to go for the classic t-strap or a funky style instead. Such a difficult decision, all this fashion!

My goal of the week is successful time management…doesn’t everyone have to these days?

Jenn

A part of my customer profile inspiration page. I love these silhouettes!

 

Practice Makes Perfect in Advanced Fashion Design Art Techniques!

Finally, spring weather! My morning at FIT was another day of working on my first two projects for my fashion design class. My assignments are to:

1) create a modern garment based on an inspiration from before the 1950s

2) design a spring collection inspired by an exhibit from the FIT Museum

I’m dying to put my sketches all together but first I have to decide on several choices that will affect my final product. Besides drawing the clothes, there are fabric swatches to be bought, colors to be used, and styles to be chosen, but this is for the end.

At the start of the project, my entire class visited the Vivienne Westwood exhibit and the Japan Fashion Now exhibit, in addition to the other garments displayed in the FIT Museum. My classmates and I, including my professor, quickly sketched outfits that inspired us to be used later in the design process. Sketching was difficult when standing up but the drawings were extremely helpful later on in the classroom when all of us spent time on thinking of our own designs based on the museum exhibits.

In my advanced design class, Professor Giardina reviewed the fundamentals during the first two class session before moving on to teaching us new tips and tricks, such as shimmer and hair. She has been emphasizing how we can make our sketches more detailed and less basic in this course. I have to work harder in this class than I did in my previous beginner class. This new challenge is demanding, but my desire to produce work that shows my total effort encourages me to continue, even when the task seems impossible. My professor is a dexterous designer whose sketches are always immaculate, so honestly, I was intimidated at first. However, she has been a professional for years, so I came to the conclusion that practice makes perfect! Her skill inspires me to work up to my potential, and I know that with hard effort and perseverance, I can feel proud of myself!

Jenn