To my surprise, the first muslin passed muster with only a few minor changes – largely because it isn’t a fitted garment, so there really isn’t much editing to do. Which means it’s time to get started on sewing!
Well, almost. There is one small catch: the front panels and trim of the garment are to be black suede, and I know nothing about sewing with leather. Sharon doesn’t have much experience with leather either, so isn’t able to help much.
Amazon to the rescue! I have ordered a copy of what promises to be an excellent book – Leather Fashion Design by Francesca Sterlacci. The author has sterling credentials: according to Amazon,
Francesca Sterlacci is Director of Design and Merchandising at Atelier Avocado, based in California, and is on the faculty of the University of the Arts in San Francisco. Previously at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York, she was Chairperson of the Fashion Design department. She is the creator of the Leather Apparel Certificate Program, the Haute Couture Program, and the Outerwear and Performance Apparel Program at FIT. Before that, she founded her own design company and sold at prestigious stores including Henri Bendel, Saks, Barney’s, Neiman Marcus, and Nordstrom.
In short, this seems likely to be the book on working with leather, and I’m looking forward to reading it when it arrives on Wednesday.
Meanwhile, I plan to occupy myself playing with fashion draping. Sharon answered a couple questions I had on draping, and showed me how to move a dart around. I think I now have a fairly-decent understanding of how to drape a basic muslin, and plan to spend some time over the next month or so working my way through the bodice draping exercises in Draping for Apparel Design (Helen Joseph-Armstrong).
Also, while we were playing with darts, I spotted what looks like a (phoenix?) wing shape in the neckline of one of the dart variations. Here it is, a bit exaggerated:
Put on both sides, add a feathered pattern, and you could have the wings of a phoenix rising from its ashes. Hmm!
But before I can develop this idea further, I need to understand how to drape a basic muslin. Off to practice!