My friends came to visit me, and when the one girl got picked up by her friend (bear with me on this), said friend asked immediately after learning that I am a fourth year fashion design student "so what is the latest fashion?". My eyes nearly left my skull! that the general perception of 'Fashion designer' is limited to knowing what the latest fashion is?! I could write a book on how this is not true- it really lights my fire that the general public is so miss-informed in this industry. It's quite sad because it is so much more than just that (and I can't stress this enough). Especially South-Africans need to rid themselves of this idea of fashion as parading across a runway, this could not be further from the truth.
It is anything but glamorous in a fashion designers studio, it is hard work and long hours. You do it because you love it, definitely not for glamour or money- there is none of that (especially if you are aiming to be a 'famous designer').Let me tell you a little secret- those designers are all flat out broke, they have to pay for those glamorous fashion shows out of their own pocket (most of the time) and get little recognition here in South-Africa for it. Let me tell you fashion design is not about fashion even, its also not about designing pretty pictures all day. It is about thinking of a creative design solution to a problem, to then transfer that 'pretty picture' into a pattern that can be cut and sown. That is also not as simple as just that, patterns needs to be checked with mock-ups etc. (and sometimes more than one mock-up). Even sourcing the right kind of fabrics (and the right kind of fusing) is all a process -and a process that needs a lot of knowledge and insight that every tom, dick and harry does not have. How do you properly measure someone, how do you draft a pattern from scratch, how do you fix problems on a dress, how to cut chiffon fabric- these are all things that fashion designers know.
And saying JUST all that is shameful of me even- because there is so much more to it that is just tip toeing around it. Next time ask a fashion designer "so what are you working on?", this will make them 1000 times happier and you will not get them to shut up!
It's like asking someone who is studying business 'What's the economy like?'- just silly and offensive (like undermining the hard work that person is actually doing), go do your research on what it actually is.
(I do not take credit for these images)
Can you make these from scratch, without anything but body measurements (waist, hip, bust, nape to waist, waist to required length, arm)? No, then I don't need an opinion thanks.
Sorry if this comes off a bit rude, however this is a frustrating problem for all fashion designers in the industry- they just don't get the respect and recognition that they deserve for their hard work. And the general miss-interpretation of the fashion industry and what it really entails needs to be cleared up so people can understand what it is that we really do and that it's not that easy. With that you can see the love and passion that goes into every dress and get a real appreciation for how stunning some garments are. After all you can't really understand something if you are ignorant of it- to really find the beauty in something you need to wholeheartedly understand it.
Knowing just that little bit, isn't fashion design kind of amazing? an art even?