Fashion Design: Start to Finish


Fashion Design: Start to Finish


Lesson Info

Why Create a Moodboard?

Let's weave right into why create a mood board starting with a strategy? Sometimes you might have this sort of germ of an idea you'll think I have a certain color scheme in mind, or I have, uh, I just went on a trip and I was inspired by the beach, and that could be that starting point on dh. That is a great a place to go if you if you have something, but then also you often that that whole process might be limiting. So you might have a collection that you were inspired by the ballet, right? So ballerinas and you love that. Chances are that hole creative slant has been explored a great deal. So the next step you might want to consider is thinking in terms of formulas, how to maybe pair that with something else to make it a little more unusual. And then we have the actual mood boards themselves, which can take many, many different forms. They can be an entire wall in a design studio where designers constantly are putting up inspiration, colors, watches, terrorist from magazines, or they...

could be in a notebook l or they could be on a board, and today we're going to work with a board where we can move things around and the next the next source for a mood board. Can be libraries and resource files and this should be kind of an ongoing process for designers because when we're faced with a project, we don't want that to be the starting place the point of us collecting information so having a light fashion library and resource files where you're constantly collecting stuff while you're inspired in the moment it is something you can go back to and review and I'm fine little gems and for the mood board, we also want to consider the look because we could be designing ah whole collection of little black dresses, but how are we putting the look together? Because we can put a little black dress with combat boots, right and fishnet stockings or we can use the same little dress and put it with pearls in high heels, so the look is very important and then finally something ah lot of people overlook until it actually happens is thinking about perspectives not being so hyper focused that you're not open to change on go explore that a little bit more. So the first one was when you have that little germ of an idea, you're starting point so these are just a couple examples of mood boards that are very definitely about a theme, so here we have the it's really about color, we decided we're going to go with goals and browns and we bring into it the color story so swatches on the bottom we might bring in some images for the look, and then we have some fabric swatches and even some accessories this well, so these are all areas you can explore these this is another example going really black and white and very stark in contrast, e same kind of approach and then again another color scheme, but working with a whole collection of color, I usually recommend to my students when they're starting with color to think in the ballpark of five to seven colors as a baseline for it. But I mean there's no right or wrong because you could have a black and white collection to which brings it down to two, but to think about that kind of scheme keeps it a little bit controlled you can always in if you have a lot of pattern and of, you know, a lot of complex, complex textiles, you can obviously be doing more of that, but that's a nice base line, it makes people kind of gives people a good starting point now, jay, in terms of if you don't mind going back to that last slide over here for a second in terms of mood boards, I'd love to two things one I see that you have some colors over there we color to me can be a little bit overwhelming in terms of what goes together? I know there's so much color theory out there are we going to be getting into that with regard to in general but also with regard to the mood boards as well? Well, our our students in class, we're asked to bring in research materials for a mood board so I think will be kind of seeing how they approach color and it will be very individual from person to person, but yeah, well, I think there are a lot of, like you said, a lot of different ways to approach color and well, when you since we're working on the mood board and we're gonna be moving things around will kind of see how relationships form that's one of the things that's really great about a mood board is that when you put things close to each other, relationships starts a form and we start to see things we didn't expect. So when you put something, you know, a shoe next to a nearing all of a sudden, you know, there might be something some kind of influence back and forth that's really cool. I like that uh, one more question when you like, how often are you using mood boards or where do they come into play or I'm presuming you have made mood boards in the past? Well, I think when you're starting out, you know when you have the luxury of sitting down and kind of doing this it's really great I think after a certain amount of time the having a sort of a notebook or an inspiration file becomes your mobile mood board you know, a lot of times we can also use digital tools like pinterest things like that but I think the process of adding to that mood board is to physical mood board is really helpful and it it kind of sets the tone and it keeps growing because you know, there I remember seeing a mood board from a local designer and he had stuck a candy wrapper because it was the perfect metallic shade of that color and that's the kind of stuff you want to allow yourself to get into so great thank you. So the mood board if we don't have like one one central idea we can come up with a formula I have an example of one formula that I used that that's very successful because it it allows for mixing and a lot of riffing off of ideas and I call it the hollywood pitch because in the movie industry somebody maybe pitching a movie to someone who is not cannot visualize you know what, what what they're talking about so they will give them reference points they'll give them reference points as to its blank meets blank I use in my book I used on example of for you during a teen line or teen movie and you're saying harry potter meets high school musical and all of a sudden you have singing wizards, right? But but there there things there, and then I always like to put a twist on it. And so it's harry potter meets high school musical musical with a twist of clone wars so animated in space and a cartoon and as silly as it sounds because that first we're thinking sort of literal, you know, pulling out things. There are things in in in the harry potter like school uniforms, right? Very english and certain color schemes in the high school musical, we have a sense of sort of, maybe athleticism and, you know, like a, you know, high school team and then the clone wars going to a cartoon for color for a certain heavy outline of the characters on dh, just the idea of something futuristic in space age so they can start to bring ideas together, and you have these little touch points for people where they may not know exactly where it comes from, but they're things that they can relate to. So I call it the hollywood pitch and it's sort of a three pronged approach where you have to major combinations, and then you throw in sort of odd man out to kind of shake things up so um and so so now uh we have getting back to the actual making of a mood board and I have a checklist and this is in the bonus materials and I'm just going to go through it very quickly and then we're going to actually get to it so first thing his colors we talked a little bit about color and how important it is to come up with a baseline for the color scheme you want to use textures are very important because for instance if we wanted to do something monochromatic where were doing just shades and versions of a color texture could be very important for creating a little energy in the design patterns same thing there you can break up ah ah designed by inserting a little pattern and then details are very, very key and here I refer to hardware enclosures so everything from buttons and zippers and tabs those are all things that we kind of take for granted but the difference between a button that has two holes and one that has four is a design decision so on and those are the details that are going to give you a competitive edge because to be quite honest this everything is out there right? So when you're putting out your designs it's every little choice that you make makes it a little different a little special then we get into embellishments are we going to decorate anyway? Put truman and the silhouettes often when we're uh drawing or starting to drape a collection we'll have to think about what is the general silhouette and at first it seems sort of abstract because it's just a big old shape but it also can imply a feeling so if you think of sort of a big soft square then you're thinking sort of drapey and comfortable if you're thinking you know a sharp triangles and you're thinking kind of maybe fitted and tight and angular so the silhouette is a great place to start because once you have that it becomes a frame for all the information you put into it on and as I mentioned earlier, the look that's very key thinking about what is the model look like? What is the attitude of the model thinking about the hair and the makeup accessories? Also key we have every shoes, jewelry bags, hats, scarves, belts I wear anything you can think of that would be an accent and really kind of deliver not just the clothes but what you're messages behind the close like what inspired it and what feels good about it to you and way don't want to forget a theme or a concept so you can I always recommend to my students not to go to fashion for theme like to go outside of the fashion room to get inspired by other industries and other other art forms so art architectures nature, historical periods, popular culture there, forget it had a student who her whole idea was to. Her whole idea for themes was were based around star wars and star trek and sci fi. And the guy was a little worried at first because I didn't want the assignment wasn't about costume, and I was worried she was going to the fashion, and she was actually looking for, I mean, looking to the images of sort of the ships out in space and all the colors of the star formations. And she came back with such a sin. Fistic, ated, elegant collection. I would not have expected it. So you really want to go to the stuff that you love for for inspiration.

Class Description

Interested in the world of fashion? Even if you're not an aspiring fashion designer, you’ll enjoy this class. Jay Calderin is the Director of Creative Marketing and an instructor at the School of Fashion Design. He is the author of three top-selling books on Fashion Design, and the founder and executive director of Boston Fashion Week. 

In Fashion Design: Start to Finish, Jay Calderin will get you started through hands-on demonstrations and step-by-step guidelines. 
Learn to navigate through the design process, from conceiving a garment to marketing it.

The various phases of fashion design will be covered, including:
  • research and mood boards, collections and trends
  • sketching, draping, pattern making, construction 
  • branding, marketing, and industry positioning
Fashion doesn’t have to be intimidating. This class is a beginners guide to the world of fashion design, led by an industry professional.


1Intro to Fashion Design Inspiration: Where to Begin
2Why Create a Moodboard?
3Student Mood Boards
4Fashion Inspiration Resources
5Learn from the Masters of Fashion
6Explore New Fashion Frontiers
7Why Narrow Your Focus?
8Find a Fashion Specialty
9Craft a Collection
10Learn to Edit
1Intro to Making Fashion: Draw, Draft and Sew
2Why Start with a Sketch?
3Drawing: Draw Your Muse
4Drawing: Sketch a Figure and Define a Silhouette
5Drawing: Render Color
6Drawing: Add Texture, Patterns, and Details
7Pattern Draping: Working with Muslin
8Pattern Draping: Drape a Basic Form
9Pattern Draping: Drape Folds
10Pattern Draping: Experiment with Style Lines
11Pattern Flat: Create and True a Pattern
12Draping and Patterning Recap
13Constructing Clothes: Put it Together
14Constructing Clothes: Make it Special and Finish Well
1Intro to Fashion Marketing and Branding
2Explore Your Audience
3Display, Data and Design
4Share Your Work
5Find Your Following
6Inform Your Brand
7Build Your Business Model
8Why Tell Your Fashion Story?
9Establish Relationships
10Be Ready for Change
1Intro to Produce a Fashion Show
2The Fashion Show: Why? When? How?
3Pre-Show: Develop a Fashion Show Concept
4Pre-Show: Build a Team
5Pre-Show: Create a Timeline and Checklist
6Day of Show: Backstage Strategy
7Show: Working with Front of House
8Show: Scheduling Run of Show
9Show: Breaking Down the Event
10Post-Show: Increasing Your Audience
11Post-Show: PR for Fashion Shows
12Post-Show: Dealing with Downtime
13Fashion Design: Start to Finish - Wrap Up