The content-packed fourth workshop began with an introduction to technical drawings, the specifications designers send to manufacturers, including all the technical details necessary to construct the garment as intended – such as the length and type of zips, size and placement of pockets and hoods and seam lines.
Next, the fabric challenge. In small groups, students were given a wide range of different fabrics to observe, feel, stretch and scrunch. Using clues about fibres, structure and textures, they were asked to identify each fabric, including making difficult distinctions between satins made of silk, acetate and cotton, different types of jersey and technical fabrics. The challenge gave the students an overview of the range of fabrics available and how their unique characteristics affect the garments they are used in.
Once they knew their cotton from their viscose and their jacquard from their brocade, each student completed a fabric reference sheet with samples, so that they can refer back to it in future.
After the fabric challenge it was straight into pattern cutting – starting to bring the students’ chosen designs to life. They are working on their individual designs in small groups, with each group led by an experienced and enthusiastic industry volunteer.A quiet urgency descended as the students got to work tracing blocks and cutting out initial shapes.
This week’s homework is to create a customer profile. To do this, the students need to think about who they’re targeting with their designs, and what lifestyle and income level their target audience has.
Next week we’ll be taking a break for half term, which gives the volunteers and students a well-deserved week off and much needed Saturday morning lie in!
As always, a massive thank you to all the volunteers who helped to make this workshop such a success!