IDEA BEHIND THE BLOG
While on a business trip to New York I toured around the garment district hungry for fabric, trims and notions. What I found there I could not have even imagined. Whole stores with nothing but floor to ceiling buttons. I had expected stores with so many rolls of fabric that I never wanted to leave but was surprised to see all the other stores I wandered into filled with lace, ribbons, studs, snaps and every other type of notion imaginable. Later in my trip I visited 5th Avenue and entered the flagship stores of some of the largest fashion brands. I was in awe of the beauty of the garments but when I left New York my bag was full of fabric and trims.
Now the difficult part, you have just found a perfect item (button, fabric, lace etc.) in the world, how do you prevent it from ending up in your sewing room, saved for another day and time when the perfect project comes up for it. As my husband will attest, and let’s be honest I am not alone in this, I have far too much “stuff” saved up. After recently moving my treasures from one side of the world to the other, in a very large shipping container, I have to admit he is right. This desire to save things for the perfect project, and thereby not using them at all, is where the idea for this blog came from. I want to challenge myself to use these items to inspire me, thereby getting those long-dormant creative juices flowing again.
HOW THE MONTHLY CHALLENGES WORK
Duelling Designs is a website and blog that chronicles monthly challenges that are intended to inspire. Every month a new challenge is set which culminates with the creation of a finished garment. The challenges use different inspirational objects each month to help in the creation of fashion illustrations. One month a button might be the object that is used for design stimulus, the next a piece of lace, or the next a photo of a building displaying fabulous architecture. Visitors to the blog will review the fashion illustrations, vote on which design they like the best and then I will pattern make and sew the winning design.
To see the workflow of the blog check out the infographic below. It is my first attempt at creating an infographic yet I think it manages to explain how the challenges work, the type of posts you can expect on Duelling Designs and a rough indication of the core posts’ timing.
Although I went to school for Fashion Design at NZ Fashion Technical Institute and Massey University and have worked in the fashion industry, I am still learning. These are after all, meant to be experiments that push my creativity so there will be mistakes and failures, and then revisions that turn these failures into triumphs. I would be thrilled if you would like to follow my journey through each of the challenges and if, like me, this serves to inspire you to be creative it would be an added bonus.
READY, STEADY, CHARGE
So I am ready to tap into my creativeness, test my mettle, and push myself out of my far too comfortable zone. So from Lou Lou’s button store in New York to the first blog challenge……….here I go!