LATEST STUDENT WORK
A very productive class today with Luisa and new lady Christi. Christi has started with her skirt toile and Luisa was working a dress for a coming wedding and also experimenting with recycling. She came to the last class with two bat wing jumpers from Zara. One in black and one in a mink colour. They had a lovely super soft feel and she wasn’t sure what to do with them both……..I suggested sewing them both together , hem to hem, in a mirror image, cutting off the neck of the lower one to give a shaped hem. Luisa did this and then added a hem for the newly emerged ‘dress’ and now she has something truly unique! AND…It looks FABULOUS!! It can be worn in so many different ways!! Pulled up…pulled down lower.The only piece left over can be use as a belt, draped, asymmetrical waistcoat or a tabard. Have a look – and let me know what you think ..
One side is a colour woven check….. and the other side is a pigment printed ‘Tie-Dye’.
The opening is false since the shirt is to have the option to be worn with either of the sides facing out as the ‘right side’.
Satin sheath dress with over layer of matching lace by one of our regular students.
Also a very nice jersey and organza dress by the same student.
Bethan, experimenting with ‘subtraction cutting’ on the stand
Student Katie shows us her finished ‘Bodice Toile’.
Another example of experimental ‘subtraction’ cutting which gives a very unusual look when combined with the crispness of the ‘crinkle’ taffeta.
“Recycling, Draping & Repairing”
Student Meryl has been working on her draping and bucket pocket dress. Looking great Meryl! Pop back to see it again as the finished item will be posted at a later date.
For the second experiment… Take the same dinner jacket and turn it upside down!! Which one do you prefer? Skirt or hooded jacket?
“Don’t DESpair…. REpair!” You can see the whole repairing procedure on our BLOG page but here are two of the photos of the finished item- a pair of chambray shorts – …..front ……and…… back..
Student’s work also shows recycling. This ‘waist cincher’ was re-cut from a pair of men’s tweed trousers. The long skirt shown, again from a recycling class, was made in to a short one, with the excess fabric gathered in to ‘rosettes’ around an elasticated waist. Recycling knitwear:- A Lambswool and angora beaded jumper and an edge to edge cardigan which were recycled and re-cut into wrapped shrug and a skirt. The skirt was also lined and a small bow was made to make a feature fastening on the shrug.
MORE STUDENT WORK:-
Previous student’s work shown here to demonstrate the level of expertise and professionalism that can be expected to have been achieved at the end of the course. http://sewitsafashionista.blogspot.com.es/ Follow us……
“Well done Luisa!
2ND in the SALON LOOK COMPETITION – MADRID
There’s been a lot going on this month! Luisa, a current student, is a lady who loves ‘make up’ and also fashion and this month she entered two competitions. One in Malaga and one in Madrid. The ‘latest brief required her to produce makeup reflecting ‘Urban Tribes of the 80’s’ and also ‘Dark Ladies. Luisa opted for a PUNK theme ‘for the first one and came to class with a sketched idea of what she wanted to produce to enhance her makeup. For the ‘Dark Girls’, she decided to use the long bustle skirt we made for her first competition, and also a ‘pannier’ frame and boning for sleeve interest.
Here is her other entry for DARK GIRLS in which she competed well but unfortunately didn’t figure in the prizes this time.
and here’s a taste of what our students learnt today…..
For our 1st lecture, we travelled back in time 3000 years, to Ancient Greece, in order visit one the greatest civilizations the world has ever seen. Garments then were little more than artfully folded or pleated lengths of cloth, held together with ties or belts and secured with elaborate clasps or pins. This was, due in most part, to the fact that fabric was an extremely precious commodity which you would not want to cut in to unless absolutely necessary, so shapes were simple and uncomplicated.
This simplicity always seemed to me to be complimented by neutral colour, as, having seen the dress of the Ancient Greeks portrayed in films over the years, I understood the garments to be made of an unbleached or white linen…………however, you like me many years ago, would be in for a surprise! …….
45 minutes into our lecture, we moved on to the next era, which was the Dark Ages.
Not much is known about this period, the clue being in the name. The main resources available to us for the study of clothing of the period, comes by way of illuminated manuscripts from the church, portraying the dress of the nobility but as for the ‘garb’ of the general peasant worker, we know a lot less. Still, we know that vestiges of the Roman and Greek dress remained but in a smaller way. The cloak of previous years reduced in size to become little more than a heavily embroidered sash wrapped about the shoulders and across the chest but did you know that variations on this theme are still worn today. You can see them in the vestments of the Greek Orthodox Church and for that matter, many religious robes.
One other interesting fact for you. You may or may not know, that architecture and fashion often influence and feed off each other. During the Gothic period, the architecture of the day was elongated and pointed.
A trait that was echoed here in the footwear of the time.
When we then pass on to the Renaissance period and in the architecture started to favour a more rounded and flattened form……
….and look what happened to shoes…….
Well, that’s all for now. Pop back for more insights in to Fashion history in the coming weeks.
You may think that it’s not important to know what has gone before when all you want to do is design for next season or next year… but you’d be wrong! Many names and designs for garments, have their roots firmly in the past and you may be caught out if another designer, buyer or customer asks, by name, for a certain garment type that you had never heard of before. There are other reasons to study the history too.
It provides you with a point of reference as to “where we are now” and “how did we get here?”.It will furnish you with an endless supply of ‘inspiration’ for future collections and most of all, it’s fascinating!!
We started our studies looking back at Greek and Roman Times. Discussing the drape of the clothing, which appear to be so simple. Try to develop something along the same lines for today’s world, and it can be anything but simple! Over the centuries there have been a number of ‘classical’ revivals. Have a look at the three garments at the top of the page. Can you put them in chronological order? Answers further down the page.
Answers:- Gold draped crinoline -1880 (Liberty’s) White draped column dress –
(Mdm Alix Grès) 1965 Gold sheath dress – 1922 (Mariano Fortuny)
This month we’ve had a new class called……
We looked at various options available when thinking about repairing your favourite denim type items. The photos posted are of a lightish weight, chambray short. There were holes in the legs, (front and back) pocket area and also the crutch. The fabric on all of the legs was also feeling rather thin and it was decided that there would not be much point in repairing the holes if more holes would surface in a month or two’s time. Better try and pre-empt any further problems happening now.
The pair of shorts…Here they are already repaired but you can see the extent of the holes. The R H side photo is close enough to see the stitch lines of the patches panels that have been sewn underneath.
The photo below shows how we also reinforced around every hole with a small stitched square to stop the fraying from spreading. The fabric we used underneath was not denim as that would have been too heavy on the leg and would have put further strain on the thinning body of the leg. We used a pigment printed, lightweight canvas that was in a complimentary blue colour.
Here is a close up of the hole at the pocket and you can see the canvas colour clearly showing. This was a fairly large hole so we zig zagged around the hole as well as containing it within a stitched frame.
The back of the shorts also needed work. The legs, one again were showing general signs of wear and were feeling very thin. There were substantial holes on one leg and a ripped seam and hole at the crutch.
On the close up you can see the rectangular shaped stitched panel of the repair patch beneath. The leather patches were taken from other old jeans and used to stitch over the large holes. One was zig zagged, and one was ‘lock stitched’.
On this last photo you can see a close up of the crutch area. The hole here was pretty big and it was thought that the seam, which was still strong, could hold a denim patch. You can see that it blends quite nicely with the rest of the garment……
So, don’t despair when your favourite jeans start to fail. Patch them sympathetically and they will reappear not only with character, but with another couple of years added to their life!!
CC41- Wartime Clothing Regulations
On 3rd October, following a week’s lectures in the “History of “Fashion, our students were asked to make a dress following the CC41 utility regulations. So what exactly does that mean? Well it is making a dress with the war time limitations…as listed below.
How do you think you would manage with this task? We’ll be posting one of the student’s designs next month.
NOT TO HAVE THE FOLLOWING:-
more than 2 pockets,
more than 5 buttons and 5 buttonholes for any openings (other than cuff openings) except in button-through dresses, where buttons may be placed along the openings at intervals of not less than 10cm
more than 1 button and 1 buttonhole on each sleeve.
more than 6 seams in the skirt of a woollen dress or more than 7 seams in the skirt of a non-woollen dress.
in relation to dresses of sizes of up to 110cm hip, any pleating or any pleats, other than 2 inverted pleats or 2 box pleats, or 4 knife pleats (the underlap of each side of any pleat not to exceed 17.5cm when fully extended).
fold tucks except to give necessary fullness and the total stitching to be used for the purpose of making such fold tucks shall not exceed 125cm.
any pin-tucking except that which consists of material doubled over on itself to form a tuck not exceeding 15mm in depth, not embodying any extraneous material [i.e. cording], and which is stitched with a single line of stitching.
more than 400cm total length of machine stitching, being hem-stitching, faggot stitching, or bar-stitching, and then only to be used (a) for the purpose of attaching a hem to a garment or (b) as picot-edging to form the edge of a garment.
ornamental stitching (which shall include any stitching which is not used for constructional purposes) apart from plain stitching to strengthen collar and bodice front opening.
ruching or gathering except to give necessary fullness.
ruching or gathering in excess of 5 rows in parallel.
Embroidery (hand or machine), appliqué, appliqué work, appliqué embroidery, braid, quilting (including puffing and matelasse), beading, sequins, rouleaux work (except for one row as a finish for the neck or sleeves), drawn thread work, galloons, or lace or lace-net trimmings.
capes (fixed or detachable).
buttons on pockets.
buttons for the purposes of ornament.
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WEEKLY CLASSES from 7.50€ per hour given by industry professional, in
SEWING, PATTERN CUTTING & FASHION DESIGN
‘The Fashion Institute’, or ‘The Fashion Workshop’, is 10 minutes from Marbella on the peaje and offers a variety of courses for those who are seeking dedicated classes and tuition in Sewing, Pattern-cutting and Fashion Design on the Costa del Sol. Whether you are looking for specific help, WEEKLY classes, can only spare a couple of hours a month, or have the ideas and hope to start your own business, we have something for you. For the weekly classes, we take adults & ages 13 years upwards and it doesn’t matter if you have experience or not. If you have a sewing machine and want to bring it with you to class then that’s fine, but you are also more than welcome to leave yours at home and use ours at no extra charge!
Learning how to sew, exploring your ‘creative side’ or developing some new ‘life skills’ such as pattern cutting, you’ll enjoy our friendly and informal environment. Choose a 2 or 3 hour class on either Tuesday, Thursday or Saturday (or any combination of days) and we can cover the topics that you are interested in. Some of the areas and courses we cover are: Recycling Pre-loved garments, Swimwear & Dance costumes, Casual wear, Evening Wear, Working with knitted fabrics, Pattern Cutting for Children’s wear, Men’s Wear, Skirts, Tops, and Dresses and Fashion Design.
By the way, If you prefer to buy a shop pattern rather than learn to pattern cutting yourself, that’s no problem. Bring your pattern to class, along with your fabric and we’ll help you with your sewing. If you can find more time, or you want to make something quickly, why not try a ‘short but intensive’ course or contact me if it’s not covered here.
GOT THE IDEAS & HOPE TO START YOUR OWN FASHION DESIGN LABEL?
We can be an attractive choice for those who want to study privately at their own pace or with the aim of setting up their own Fashion and Design business on completion. As a working designer I am well aware of the industry, what’s relevant and needs to be covered and what we can omit so I can ensure that what you cover everything you will need as quickly as possible and studies are completely appropriate to the area you’re interested in. Please call or email and we can discuss how best to help you.
LOOKING FOR CAREER’S ADVICE?
If you are considering a career in Fashion, would like to learn more about the industry, create a Fashion portfolio or just talk to someone with insight of the the business then please feel free to contact me to discuss how I can help you. Other topics I offer tuition on are: History of Fashion, Design Fundamentals, Sewing & Construction Techniques for Haute Couture & RTW (ready to wear) markets, Illustration, Portfolio skills,Technical Drawing for Fashion or ‘Flats’, Draping on the Stand (seen above) Toile & Block Development, Experimental Cutting, CAD, Fabric Print Development, Fabric Manipulation and Surface design. Email for more info.
I’ve had my own, highly successful Fashion design business for more than twenty odd years, employing around 200 people over two continents. With our own purpose built factory, I designed for, and supplied, major high street names such as Monsoon, Harrods, Debenhams and John Lewis resulting in an 8 figure annual turnover. I’ve been headhunted by prestigious “Sir Terence Conran Design Group” and lectured as Head of Fashion.
Fashion, design, recycling and sewing are a way of life for me and I am passionate about passing on the knowledge that I have acquired over the years. Some people want to learn how to design and how to start their own business and others simply want to learn how to operate their new sewing machine and change a zip. Being able to sew and make your own clothes is a ‘Life Skill’ that used to be taught at school. Now this is more likely to remain undiscovered unless passed down from other, older family members. However, the current, economic situation is reviving interest in these techniques and there has never been a better time to learn how to sew and recycle. My aim is to offer classes to all who wish to develop their interest in the subject and with that in mind, we cater for as many as possible. So whether you wish to attend on a full-time basis, part-time, for a day a month or just for two hours a month everyone can be accommodated. And if you’re in to ‘recycling’ and can’t afford to buy new clothes or fabrics, let me bring out your creative side……Don’t discard the clothes in your wardrobe that you no longer wear, bring them to class and learn how to transform them into unique pieces. You’ll save money, be helping the environment and more than likely make some new friends along the way!
- “For me, fashion a fascinating and amazing subject and I believe it is quite unique in its ability to incite the passion that it does. Over the centuries it has been loved, adored, ridiculed and even responsible for the deaths of its followers and creators. Right now, the industry is again re-examining it’s self and recycled, along with ‘hand crafted’ garments are now more preferred than the ‘fast fashion’ that has plagued our high street stores for so long. Passing on my knowledge to others at such a time has never been so important to me and such a privilege”.
“Without a doubt the best tutor I have ever had throughout my education. She has so much knowledge and is eager to share it with her pupils and colleagues alike. Not just an educator, Sharon is also a great support and pushes you to reach your potential.”
“Sharon is not only a talented designer but also a natural educator. She was with me every step of the way to ensure that I was learning about the fashion industry in the correct way. Sharon always had valuable opinions on my work, and I never doubted taking her advice. She is personable, patient and truly cares about her students; Sharon always went out of her way to make sure our concepts matched our physical creations. I would highly recommend Sharon as a educator in fashion design and construction.”
“Mrs. Aldred has a dedication for teaching and passion for fashion. She has a natural eye for style and colour and her lectures were innovative and exciting, engaging the entire class. She has excellent relationships with her students, having their best interests at heart and I always turn to her for advice. It truly was a pleasure having her as my teacher.”
To get a taste of the HISTORY of Fashion Classes Click on the image below.
PART TIME TUITION is sometimes available on a 1:1 basis
I have been asked about the option of studying Fashion & Design on a part time basis. So, if you’re interested in studying but don’t want a full time course then this may be of interest to you…..
You would be able to study the modules you require but as previously offered in the ‘Fashion Institute’ FASHION & DESIGN DIPLOMA.
The hours you are available for study can be discussed and would ultimately be up to you but I suggest as follows:- Wednesday and Friday
Wed :– 6.0 hrs (10:00 till 4:30pm) inc ½ hr for lunch –
Fri:- 6.0 hrs (10:00 till 4:30pm) inc ½ hr for lunch –
The charge for this study option is 50e per day in class or €10 a hour 1:1. and includes pattern cutting paper for block and pattern development. Payment is a month in advance and is due at the start of the first class of the month. No repayment will be paid if the student cancels a class but fees will be returned if the class is cancelled by the Institute.
This is an example of the modules previously offered on the full time course.
CONTACT ME HERE TO ENQUIRE ABOUT THIS STUDY OPTION.
PREVIOUSLY TAUGHT OVER TWO YEARS as part of the “Fashion and Design Course ” History of Fashion, Design Fundamentals, Sewing & Construction Techniques for Haute Couture & RTW markets, Designing your range, Pattern Block Development, Pattern Cutting, Illustration, Portfolio skills, Draping on the Stand, Toile & Sample Development, Experimental Cutting, Fabric Print Design, Fabric Manipulation and Surface design, Sustainability & Recycling, Trend Research, CAD Software, Mood Boards & Presentation, Costing & Sourcing, Business Start up.
Please call or email and we will work with you to develop a timetable that suits your requirements.
Examples of a print that was developed in the textile design project, year 2.
With a complete understanding of the industry and an absolute passion for fashion, we don’t just educate, we aim to create innovative and confident designers and artisans, who are totally confident in their subject. So whether you aspire to produce beautiful, unique and exciting garments for yourself, or you’re ultimately hoping to follow us in to the Fashion Industry, we will be there to guide, develop and totally inspire you. The individual modules taught are also open to all interested but please call or email to discuss or book your place. The names of the modules that were previously taught over two years at diploma level are listed above. FASHION INSTITUTE DIPLOMA in “FASHION & DESIGN”
Blogs we love…..
Color and color theory….
Classes, Workshops & Summer Courses
If you’ve never done any sewing before, or if you are happy behind your SEWING MACHINE but would also like to meet new friends, why not come along to our Tuesday, Thursday or Saturday classes. Our small, informal and friendly group will have you creating and having fun along the way no matter what your starting level or age. “RECYCLING, general sewing & beginners pattern-cutting workshop” are all topics we cover. Learn how to recycle, or ‘re-cut’ pre-loved garments from your wardrobe or charity shop and make unique pieces you will love to wear again. Learn how to cut a pattern for yourself or family and friends. Scared of zips? Tremble at the thought of making button holes? Don’t worry. We will go through all the various methods you can use and you’ll soon find yourself wondering what all the fuss was about! You can use our machines while you are in class for free but pattern paper, toile and zips etc. will incur extra, nominal charges.
Tues & Thurs:- from 6€ to 7.50€ per hour
Morning session -10:00am –1:00pm
Afternoon Session -1:30pm – 4:30pm
Saturday:- 8€ per hour
Want a break from the afternoon sun? Then why not our Summer Swimwear course and learn how to make your own bikini? It’s not as difficult as you may think, especially when you have us to teach you and help you every step of the way! Pop along for as little as two days with us and come away with your own bikini. (You have the option to extend the course and add an extra day if you prefer …just add 30 euros)
dates to be decided so please email or call to discuss
2 people min per course.
2 days x 3hrs sessions for 70€ Or 100€ for 3 sessions.
(inc fabric for basic bikini)
*Reduction for those already taking classes with us.
Email for more info or to reserve your place.
Summer “Sewing Intensive”:-
This 2 week course, will suit beginners to intermediate. It will cover finding your way around the machines, to general sewing techniques, basic pattern-cutting, different types of seam finishes and progressing to more complicated components such as fly front openings etc. If you are already taking classes with us you can sign up for these two weeks at a reduced rate and continue on your own project should you prefer.
Mon 15th July to Wed 17th July & Mon 22nd July to Wed 10th July.
Mon 15th: 9:30 am – 4:00 pm Inc 30 mins for lunch (food not included)
Wed 17th: 9:30 am – 4:00 pm
Fri 19th: 9:30 am – 12:30 pm.
Mon 22nd: 9:30 am -12:30 pm
Tues 9th: 9:30am – 4:00pm
Wed 10th: 9:30 am – 4:00 pm Inc 30 mins for lunch (food not included)
2 people min per course. 30hrs for 300€ *
Reduction for those already taking classes with us.
Email us for more info or to reserve your place.
Summer “Fashion Taster”:-
Still at school, love art, design & clothes but not sure what direction to take? Or just want to get an idea of what it’s like to be a fashion designer? You might have a better idea after our Summer ‘Fashion Taster Workshop’. Join us for this short, 2 week course and we will take you on a journey of discovery that will illustrate the areas you will need to develop as a working FASHION DESIGNER. If you then decide you would like to study full time with us, you have the choice of either our one, or two year course.
Mon 1st July to 5th July & Mon 8th July to Fri 12th July.
WEEK 1:- Mon 1st: 9:30 am – 4:00 pm. Inc 30 mins for lunch (food not included)
Wed 3rd: 9:30 am – 4:00 pm. Inc 30 mins for lunch (food not included)
Fri 5th: 9:30 am – 12:30 pm WEEK 2:– Mon 8th: 9:30 am – 12:30 pm. Wed 10th : 9:30 am – 4:00 pm. Inc 30 mins for lunch (food not included) Fri 12th : 9:30 am – 4:00 pm. Inc 30 mins for lunch (food not included)
2 people min per course. 30hrs for 300€ *
Reduction for those already taking classes with us.
Email us for more info or to reserve your place.
Unique on the Costa del Sol?
From the students who have attended our classes on a regular basis, (and they come from as far away as Gibraltar in the South and Nerja in the North of the coast), we believe we are unique in offering weekly classes and tuition to in sewing, pattern cutting and design on the Costa del Sol!
Situated on the Mijas Costa, not far from junction 200 on the E-15 the toll road .Being based in the popular urbanisation of Sitio de Calahonda, we’re 30 minutes from Malaga Airport and roughly mid way between Marbella and Fuengirola.
If you live here on the coast, why not join us for one of the Summer classes such as the ‘Swimwear Workshop’. You could even spend the morning at the beach and then, in the afternoon, come and make a new Bikini with us! For those who are on a longer holiday in the area but don’t want to spend all your time sunbathing. Learn new skills with us in the morning and then relax, swim or experience the Spanish culture in the afternoon.
If you already at school here on the coast and are looking for careers advice. Take one of our summer workshops or ‘Fashion Taster’ courses and get a feel for the industry and what it can offer you, without having to leave your friends and family here on the Costa del Sol.
Contact us for detailed directions.