The Stitching Girls scoped out displays of the new Apparel Design graduating students at Seattle Community College's annual Fashion Portfolio Show. The 2 year certificate program culimates in the presentations by each student of a coordinated design line. Each display shows at least 3 sewn garments with a central theme described in a storyboard of inspiration sources, sketches and fabric swatches. Also on display are each student's unique business card and portfolio book depicting all the projects they designed and produced during their 2 year course. Program Professors, Hisako Nakaya and Camila Sigelmann are assisted by several supporting instructors.
(Read Barbara O'Steen's observations about the clothing designs on display
and Kristina Leslie's additional information - see both below the photos.)
Following the show, Instructor Debra Masson gave the Stitching Girls a detailed tour of the Apparel Design Program's extensive and well equiped classrooms. (Be sure to see the many photos below.)
After the Show and Tour, the Stitching Girls strolled down Broadway, the ever changing main drag of Seattle's Capital Hill neighborhood, to a delicious lunch at Charlie's.
According to the show brochure, "Students graduating from the Apparel Design program at Seattle Central Community College boast a degree from the most techically oriented design program in the region with a reputation as a center for innovative and creative learning. After two years of study, students possess skills that enable them to enter the market fully prepared for employment in a variety of apparel careers."
From Barbara O'Steen - - -
I want to add a little about the clothing -- we were not allowed to photograph any of the clothes; that's why Peggy's photos are concentrated on the work spaces.
There were about 20 students with a display, maybe 6 or 7 were male. The fellows seemed to favor black, gray and brown for their outfits, even for sport clothes. One fellow sewed two wonderful wool coats, one slate blue and one medium brown. He accented the brown coat with black wool by placing it underneath faced seams (that opened) in four places on the coat. You'll have to write me if you want more description of that inventive effect. His third piece was the most colorful male entry, a jacket of many blue tones that he had the wool dyed and handwoven before he sewed the jacket.
That leads into the fact that all of the students were responsible for their fabrics and they tried to be different. At least three of them used only recycled cloth. One woman purchased a fantastic rayon length in Los Angeles that must have cost her a fortune but she used some of it for all three of her finished dresses. The fabric had every color, a jungle of flowers and plants with a few small animals hiding in there and one human face, life size, that the designer was able to put front and center on the bodice of the evening dress.
Another fabric I loved was lavender silk with a heavy drape. The designer drew an assortment of buildings in simple lines, probably ink lines. Then paid a company (I know of internet ones - see from Kristina below) to print her designs on the silk in narrow white lines. She used it for all three garments, three unusual blouses with one pants (brown), one shorts (gold), one skirt (black). The blouses had lovely drapes, probably bias, that played off the straight geometrical lines of her design.
At least three of the students must aspire to costume and theater designing as their displays were: one rather circus like, one with western cowboy look, and one I don't know what. Another had designs only for women riding bicycles which intrigued Penny because that is what she designed some twenty years ago for her Final Line in this program.
I had expected some more far-out designs because they are mostly young but I forgot that they want to earn a living and are not after the Wearable Art that I like to imagine and sometimes sew. One student came close with creating all three of her pieces in transparent silk chiffon of solids: white, cream, and a soft coral color. She cut every piece in complex curves, sometimes joining them and sometimes overlapping to combine the transparency. She called one Butterfly that had a cape (which reminded me of one triple set of Supremes stage dresses we saw that were completely gaudy incredible butterflies). The three dresses of this student completely revealed the mannekins underneath; I assume she intended you wear a body stocking or something.
You can see I enjoyed the show and I hope you can imagine a bit of what I've described. See you all in September.
from Kristina Leslie - - -
Just a bit to add to Barbara's incredible description...
The guy with the wool coats - Tom Milewski - was the winner of the annual "its a wrap" award
of $2,500, which is donated annually by an alum and given to the student that had the best total package. Award criteria includes not just his final line, but also that he was a good student, had good attendence in the program and turned in his work on time. I also heard that his wool plaid was hand woven and UPS had lost the material for about 10 days. I can just imagine the panic he was going through ... ooofffdddaaaaa!
The architechual printed fabric was done through www.spoonflower.com