Fashion Intern

Month: November 2018

London – Week 8


This week’s post will be short as although we had an incredibly busy week I haven’t learnt any new skills. As there was a deadline for our freelancers there was work that needed styling coming in everyday. Seeing as we are now edging towards Christmas we are also seeing a few Christmasy prints coming in as well as requests for prints for their Christmas range. The few print searches I have assisted with I have noticed for their Christmas range they wanted more subtle not obviously Christmas, this seems to be a reoccurring trend according to the sales executives. As their general clients aim to sell to mass market and at different price ranges by designing subtly winter prints then it allows their clients to carry their garments through from Autumn or Winter into spring rather than being exclusively designed for the Christmas period.

One of the few things I have learnt and understood this week is how multi-directional patterns can confuse textiles designers however become useful to fashion designers. Multi-directional patterns are patterns where if it is say a conversational the small parts will be facing in several different directions. By using a multi-directional a fashion designer can use the fabric a lot more economically as it allows them to place their pattern pieces in a lot closer proximity. However when it comes to the textile world designing multi-directional patterns without a determined product it is for is rather confusing and complicated and can sometimes hinder sales. When looking at fabrics for my final year if purchasing or creating my own patterns this is definitely something I will have to keep in mind to reduce cost and waste. Below is an example of a multi directional pattern.

Giraffe Multi directional pattern

A skill I never thought I would use in my life is not one I have learnt at university or even during my GCSE’s but the basic Microsoft Excel mathematics functions when I was 13. I was asked to created a simple spreadsheet for the admin manager that simply totaled at the bottom, however from the age of 13 til now I have never had to use any of these skills in the slightest although I do fortunately remember how to do such functions. This made me consider the other general skills not specifically fashion based ones I have learnt throughout university so far and schooling that could be useful if I were ever to want to start my own business as well as keep a personal record if I were to do any freelancing work. Until you have to use them you don’t really know how many skills you have and I think this will become of use to be in my final year, although I haven’t learnt anything specific it is reminding me of the amount of skills I have and how they could be used to create something that really represents me in my final year.

Finally this weekend my mother came to visit as we decided to visit the meridian line at the Royal Greenwich observatory, Greenwich market, Brixton market, Brick lane market and Old Spitalfields market. Personally we weren’t fan’s of Greenwich market or Brixton market as Greenwich was a bit too upmarket arty for us and Brixton a standard market. However Brick lane market was quirky and had an incredibly wide variety of items on sale of which both me and mum found things we liked so a very good weekend to end a busy week.

London – Week 7

Hi Everyone,

So this whole placement year is designed to help us learn more about the industry we want to work in, learn new and useful skills we can use to complete our degrees and in the workplace, and discover what kind of job we ideally want to go into in the industry. However when learning about what you do want to do you usually establish what you don’t like at the same time. So this weeks post is all about everything I’ve learnt so far at Amanda Kelly about what I don’t want to do in my final year and what I want to avoid like the plague in my career.

So far from my many weeks in London I have established 2 things that I do not in the slightest want to work with in my final year or life even if I were paid to and they are pleats and chiffon. Throughout the week I have been asked by Amanda to make several knife cut pleat skirts from old prints, all printed on chiffon. At the best of times I would struggle to do even pleats because of my hands but adding chiffon into this equation made it utter hell. I did however get to use my skills I learnt in my first year of how to do neat even gathering but generally I found it difficult because of my hands. So here I have learnt that I very much do not want to work with chiffon or pleat anything when in my final year nor in my later career.

I also have learnt that when it comes to fashion prints from the degree I come from and my personal skills doing fashion textiles for the living would be quite difficult. In comparison to the other interns whose drawings are all beautiful and life like mine are distinctive and more geometric or abstract, which according to the sales managers these more conversational styled prints don’t tend to sell as well to their clients who usually are buyers for high street retailers looking to sell to a mass market. However saying all of this I have been asked to produce my own ‘group’ of geo animal prints ready to sell for summer prints which is very exciting the idea of my little toucans or flamingos on towels and swimming costumes. Although I’ve concluded that I do not want to be a fashion print designer later in life it is certainly something I would consider freelancing at, as I enjoy general print design however personally do not hold enough fascination or drawing skills to do it as my full time job or at least not for mass market.

In my personal life this week I decided to take a trip up to my boyfriend’s for his birthday braai ( I think that’s how you spell it). Lots of his family came over which was lovely and it was nice to have a weekend out of London. We also went to see ”The Crimes of Grindelwald” which I have been waiting for since ”Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” and it was just as amazing as the trailer. If you’re into Harry Potter I’m sure you’ve already booked your tickets to see this, if you’re not I would still recommend this film. Being separate from the Potter series it’s still more amazing work from J.K. Rowling, I would say however you must see the first film in order to follow onto this one as otherwise it can be a bit confusing. Overall however I personally loved it.

London – Week 6

6 weeks in and only 5 remaining it feels like just yesterday was my first week.

Hi all,

I’m 6 weeks in working at Amanda Kelly and yet I’m still learning new skills every week. This week we had a series of repeat tiles and colour separations needing to be done. As we had 3 new in house designers start this week this meant there were very few computers available for us to work on. Since I am the fastest at repeat tiles I was given the task of completing the several clients requests, this involved me needing to learn how to colour separate. Colour separated files tend to be done when the client is wanting to screen print the design, they will give us a the size of their screens and how many colours they wish to have it separated into so we can then edit the file and make it ready for printing.  Generally colour separations should only be a maximum of 12 colours, with some designs this can be very difficult to achieve as I discovered with a file that had 64 different colours. Up til now I have tried to avoid doing any colour separating as when briefly shown it deeply confused me and there were many other tasks that could be done. However now I have had to learn and I have to say this skill will be of great use to me in future designing for garments and patterns. The tools involved in colour separating allow you to select everything within the document of the same colour and cut, delete or copy it. Personally I can see myself using this as a much more effective version of the magic wand tool, allowing me to clear a space much more precisely. I also learnt how to change everything of one colour in a pattern even quicker than I already knew, this will definitely be useful in other placements as well as my final year for doing alternative colourways with speed.

Dotty Ditsy

As we weren’t particularly busy this week I got a chance to learn more about drawing on photoshop from the designers and put these techniques and skills into practice. There are so many tools in photoshop I just never thought to even look at before now that I know will be useful for me for any general drawings I do as well as designing in my final year. Above is an example of a ditsy pattern and below is a different style of ditsy.

Detailed Ditsy

    As you can see the ditsy’s can be very different from each other varying from detailed to simple and quick. The designers taught me that not all patterns need to be incredibly accurate and detailed. However when drawing ditsy flowers for digital patterns it is best to draw the flowers very large and shrink them to your preferred size to not lose any details or quality of the flowers when the pattern is then printed or if it needs to be up scaled.

In my general life this week I finished my book ”The luckiest girl alive” and honestly I wouldn’t recommend it. Personally it just didn’t catch my attention as much as previous books however I felt I could relate in some ways on a personal level to certain parts with the main character and issues she comes across in the story. However although it didn’t personally turn out to be my kind of read it wasn’t a painful story to read so if from the blurb it catches your attention it could be worth a read. Also because it’s going to be my very fluffy man’s 21st birthday on Monday I luckily got an extra visit from him this weekend and we went on many adventures. First once he arrived all the way from Victoria station to Wembley for dinner as they used to have a South African chain restaurant there, unfortunately it turned out to have closed and re-branded however still excellent food. The next day we went to the Shrek adventure which was amazing and I would thoroughly recommend. I’ve always loved Shrek being an alternative happily ever after story and personally not being the prettiest of women it made me so happy to see you don’t have to look like a model to get a happily ever after. Anyway the whole thing was simply great fun and very much touches into your inner child.

London – Week 5

Hi everyone,

So it’s been 5 weeks now and I’m starting to feel like this is my daily job and life, it’s hard to believe I’ve only been here just over a month and not an entire year I’ve settled in so well. This week was ‘The London Textile Fair’ as well as we have a couple new freelancers start which made for a very busy week.

I’m starting to adjust to London life now although it is significantly tighter on funds than when I’m living at home/uni. The cost of living in London is incredibly expensive for example my travel to and from work each week totals at just under £40, whereas in Coventry for my next internship the cost for travel will be £50 for the entire month (both are using public transport only). One issue I personally find about living in London is feeling lonely, as I’m not from the area I don’t know anyone who lives in London except my flat mate and her friends. Being home sick is definitely a major part of doing an internship in a new city further away from home than you are used to however being so caught up at work it’s not as noticeable now as it was in the first couple of weeks. 

As the textile fair was on Wednesday/Thursday this meant all the mounting and overlocking we normally have had to be completed in half the time so they could accompany Amanda herself and Duncan the assistant CEO to the fair. I very much learnt there is a limit to how long you can sit at an overlocker for before it becomes dramatically painful and you feel like you’re going to turn into the Hunchback of Notre Dame. But between 3 of us we did manage to get everything done and ready to be taken to the show. Unfortunately I did not get to go to the show however from talking to the textile interns they told me it is very similar to premier vision which takes place in Paris. However in my personal time I decided to attempt to draw my own geo pattern as according to the sales managers these types of prints sell well at the fairs but this specific print is just for my personal use and blog.

Geo Pattern

Once all the fabric had been packed up ready to go we searched through the archives for print options for a variety of brands to their specification which was interesting looking at the old prints various designers had produced. The archives are huge and separated into different styles of prints and some designers in an attempt to make designs easier to find. This organisation sounds simple however like most things if one person does something wrong can mess up the whole system. We spent several hours re-organizing some files into their correct designers and filing them away. We also had to re-organise the current work as now we are into November we need to make space for them on the shelves and move the oldest work into the archives which again took us a while to do however fortunately was fairly well organised to didn’t take too long to put away.

In terms of my learning for this week I haven’t learnt anything really, but I have gotten to put the skills I have learnt into  practice with less supervision over the interns for the past week. Putting my skills into practice has taught me one key lesson which although is not useful to me for my final year it is for my general life. I have learnt if this were my full time job and I had to do tasks such as these on a daily basis I would be quite happy and content with my life. After a retail job that bored me or put me in pain and stressful times at university as well as prior in school it feels reassuring I have chosen the right path, all the work will be worth it and it will make me happy later in life which is all a person can really hope for.

In my personal life my boyfriend came to visit me again and we visited the Tower of London. This was a great day out and very interesting learning the history of the towers with it’s residents, prisoners, uses and executions. I never knew how enormous Ravens are, as there are several in residence at the tower flying around and enjoying life I got to see them much closer understanding quite how big these birds are which was interesting. During our visit we also got to view the crown jewels past and present which were stunning to see in person. There were many queues to see the jewels being one of the main parts of attraction to the tower but eventually we did get in to see them. Although we did have a fun day out I’m not 100% sure it was worth the entry price but definitely something I can tick off the places I would like to visit.

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