Monday, 23 April 2012

Pattern Drafting

Sorry for the lack of posts this past week.  I went a wee mini holiday to London for the Vogue Festival and squeezed in a couple of museum visits and a little shopping.  I also apologise that this is quite a wordy post!

As much as I love London, I'm always rather unimpressed when I attempt to go fabric shopping.  Maybe it's because I'm so used to the amount we have in the shop that in reality nothing else really compares.  Or maybe its the fact every shop is pretty much owned by the same people and there is little variety.  Or more importantly, maybe it's because they are all ridiculously over-priced!  I went into a couple and seen things we had in stock that were a good £3-£5 dearer per metre that us, and that's on simple cottons, not fancy, expensive silks and evening wear fabrics. I didn't manage to make it to Goldhawk Road, but from the few reviews I read online, I can't imagine that I missed much.

On the other hand,  London is home to Liberty, my all time, ultimate favourite department store.  I love the building, the old fashioned interior mixed with modern displays and collections from my favourite designers.  There's also that whole 3rd floor haberdashery and fabric section which sweetens the deal.  I love Liberty fabrics, the quality and design of every print never fails to amaze me.  When we get new deliveries from them I'm always so excited to get to nosey at what's new.  But the London store is a like a sweetie shop for me.  I kind of like that they don't have too many bales of their fabric so you don't get overwhelmed, but compared to the selection we've got it's pretty much the same (other than new season prints).  I was good and only bought 1x 0.7m of this gorgeous Landis A Tana Lawn

I'm planning a simple, short pencil skirt that I can wear through summer, for both work and on holiday.

We had a quick visit to the Fashion Textile Museum, which is near London Bridge on Bermondsy Street.  This is a lovely wee museum, totally noncommercial and pretty popular.  Currently they have an exhibition on featuring female textile designers in the 1950's-60's era called "Designing Women: Post War British Textiles".  I left feeling soo inspired.

We also had a wander round the new exhibition at the V&A, Designing Britain: 1948-2012.  This was also a lovely exhibit and had a full hall featuring fashion and textiles.  Technically you weren't meant to take pictures, but I couldn't not sneak one of this...
I really do love Alexander McQueen.

I've got to admit though, with the Fashion halls currently closed for refurbishment, my favourite part of the museum is the bookshop.  I've always been a reader, mostly lately it's been fashion books and sewing books.  I'm one of those people, who if they don't know how to do something, I'll find an appropriate book and learn.  I'll quite happily spend a day just reading and reading.  Well the V&A bookshop is a treat, it has 4 large sections dedicated to fashion, with some sewing/customization books mixed in.  Most of the books are of an academic nature and relevant to collections the museum has had, this makes them so much more informative than those I can pick up in the very limited section in my local Waterstones (I'm old school, I like to see a book before I buy it)  I spent ages just looking at those books, wishing I had a bigger bank balance, and luggage allowance to take them all home with me.  I found this book on pattern drafting and decided it was the one for me.

Last year I went to a pattern drafting workshop and ever since I've been wanting to make a real go at creating patterns for me to wear.  So whilst in Paris with Uni in January, I picked up this book which is an introduction to pattern drafting.
Its a little strange as it's written in both French and English, however it adds to the charm.  It has wonderful illustrations and really in depth descriptions of what is required to be done at each step of the process.  So another of my aims for this summer is to get started on pattern drafting!  I'm hoping I can give it a real go and come up with something tailor made for me that is different from whats already available to me.

I'm away to search Pinterest for some inspiration!

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