I've been trying to spend more time sketching in these last few weeks. The sketching that I do for collections is usually structured; I know I have to design a certain number of work outfits, a couple of evening dresses, and I have to stick to certain guidelines of what I think will sell. But my trip to New York in June reminded me how aimless sketching that evolves as you draw can often generate new ideas. I like to think of it as stream-of-consciousness sketching: just let the pen guide you and you or may not end up with a garment (in fact, most of the time I end up with a doodle-drawing).
This stream-of-consciousness sketching gave me an idea for something a little more structured, and this is the exercise I've been working on in the last few weeks. The idea is simple: I take an outline of a geometric shape like a circle or a square and try to turn it into a flattering garment without changing the outline of the geometric shape too much. The goal: a flattering piece of clothing with an interesting silhouette.
I spent a lot of time trying to convert a triangle into a top- and I still haven't given up on the inverted triangle (I think it will turn into a cool dolman-sleeve draped top). But rather than show pages of trial-and-error sketches, I just wanted to lay out the basic steps in the exercise.
I started off with a triangle and then drew a simple bodice inside, without trying to lose too much of the triangle area.
I decided to make it a layered top to retain the triangle shape. The inner camisole is like a bodice, and the thin outer layer is a draped piece that is joined to the camisole at the shoulder, neck and armhole. It was crucial to cut the outer layer on the bias to get a better drape and so that the layer doesn't actually stick out like a triangle. The only parts of the triangle area that got left out of the garment silhouette are the 3 corners.
Below is a prettier illustration of the top by my intern from NIFT, Indhumathy Jayaprakash.
I couldn't resist making a few samples and putting them in the store. This is a photo I took yesterday of Draped Triangle on a hanger at the store.