Have you ever wondered how the dresses on the runway came to be? It’s not all just fun and games. As much as I’d love to say it’s all creative and artistic work, there is actually quite a lot of time, thought and work that goes into the design of each gown. This is by no means a complete guide to designing, but does lay out the basic stages.
You may be surprised that the first question is not, “What do I feel like designing?” but rather, “Who am I designing for?” If you keep up with fashion, you will notice sometimes you can identify a designer without even seeing their name. There is a certain unique style to their work and you just know it’s theirs. This is because each designer has a specific type of girl in mind. For example, one may be designing for the outdoorsy, free-spirited, feminine type; another’s target is the modern, strong, independent bride. Everything about these two girls will be different, and their dresses will reflect that! Questions like, “where does this girl live? What does she wear everyday? Where and when is she getting married? What people and places inspire her? What is her personality like? What types of movies does she watch? What is her economic situation? What is important to her in a dress?” are asked. Some may seem silly, but the more you get to know your client, the better you can design for her.
Now that you know your girl, what does she want to wear? This is where you start applying all the information you gathered in the research stage. The concept stage is where colors, themes and trends are taken into consideration. Fashion is fast, so this is the stage where you not only have to consider, “what does our girl want?” but, “what is our girl going to want in a year?” because concept to creation, to production, to runway, to the store often takes a full year, if not more. “What direction are we moving in?” would be a good way to summarize this stage.
After you understand what direction you are moving in and whom you are designing for, the next step is creation, or forming the gown. This is the stage all ideas get put on paper, and often multiple renderings are made for each gown with varying details. Fabrics, finishing’s, structure, construction, layers and closures are decided and put together leading to the last stage.
After the design is completed, a first prototype is made to get an idea of the gown in real life. Even if you consider everything in your head, sometimes the finished product reveals difficulties you hadn’t expected. Combinations of fabrics don’t pair well, drape doesn’t lay quite right, unflattering details, discomfort and difficulty dressing or moving are just some of the problems designers run into. Once tests are done and revisions made, the gown is now ready to go into final production and out to the brides or the runway!
Now that you’ve read about it, see it in real life by checking out our new Spring 2016 line, maybe you’ll have a little different perspective on all the work that goes into developing a new line!