Monday, 13 December 2010

The new project.....

So today we were briefed our professional project!!


Explore the word revolutionary and what it might mean to you?
Design and produce a Look Book with branding and conceptual direction.

When we were given this brief I was worried that I couldn't find an angle which I felt passionate about so I knew I needed to take this idea and think on it. I think once I have my idea I will be able to get stuck in as for this project I can play on my strengths and should be something I can really enjoy.

My biggest nightmare happened......'s been a while since I've posted as I have needed time to relax after what I can only say as the most manic two weeks of my life! I sure have learnt a lesson!!!

So the day before our trend books were to be sent, Tuesday 23rd November, at 9am I decided to back up all my work as so far all my work had been saved to my USB. I had not been able to back up my work before then as my laptop is quite old and does not have much memory and with running the likes of Photoshop, Illustrator and InDesign it just made it impossible to save the capacity of work. I was lucky a few days before the deadline to have access to my partner’s laptop to use as a back up, so the morning I went to do this disaster struck!!!! I plugged in my USB and set the laptop down onto the table in front of me only to catch the USB and for it to heart stopped!! I calmly moved the laptop and safely removed the USB but when plugging it in my nightmare became a reality and it would not work!!!

I'm not joking when I say ALL my work was on that USB....well all but the crochet top that had taken me a week to complete...that was my bit of light in all this! I was not ready to admit defeat so I called a local company that attempt to repair USB's and went straight away to put all my faith in this final hope....unfortunately there was nothing to be done :( I couldn't believe it.

I took myself straight to staples where I bought a new USB and headed straight home to what seemed the impossible task of getting the work done in 24 hours.

BUT 24 hours later I managed to send off the trend book, still today I don't know how I did it, I think the support of my boyfriend and pretty much no sleep or stopping to eat and I got there....boy did I poor myself a drink!!!

Just relieved to have it sent off!!!! PHEW!

The next part to get finished was the research....unfortunately this was also lost on the USB but I managed to rack my brain and collect all the information again, a lot of time searching under different words to try to trigger that same research. I handed in my research on Wednesday 8th December I handed in m research. I feel this reflected exactly my route to each of my trends and support for each and the evaluation was the final piece to complete which finally knew this project was done with and that I learnt a BIG lesson not to be repeated

Thursday, 25 November 2010


For PPRD we have been working in groups of either 5 or 6.

We have been given an object from Modip (Museum of design in plastics). Our teams object is a butterfly napkin holder.
The team objective is a team work challenge to create a product range off the back of the initial object, in our case the napkin holder.

In our group we have:
The designers:
Rory, Lara and Ashley - They have been designing and producing images of the homewear based on the butterfly motif we have created from the modip item.

The Promoters:
Holly and I (Michelle) - We have been working together to create the brand and market, we have both created work seperately to show but we have been working together to discuss ideas and research.

Today was the day we presented our work to the class in a presentation. We were all buzzing and we all felt really proud of the work we had done. The presentation went really well and this made me feel even more proud to be a member of the team.

Below are some images from the presentation......



Our work can all be found on our blog:-
Michelle xx

Monday, 22 November 2010


In this project I have decided to work on my illustrations as they are something I have enjoyed previously but feel I could do better with.
I have spent every evening for a week creating a crochet top, which I am really pleased with as you can really see the intricacies of the top.

Re-cycle...Re-use shoot

My inspiration for this shoot is to give it a vinage and relaxed feel. In the photography I want to capture the softness of the model and a laid back appeal to the clothes.

For this photo shoot I have tie dyed a pair of jeans using bleach....this is to put across the trend of re-use/re-vamp. For all of us that have that favourite pair of jeans there is a way to re-invent them to make them fashionable once again.

For the photo shoot location I am lucky enough to have a flat which fit in perfectly with the theme of vintage and its relaxed atmosphere. We also used the garden to create a real down to earth feel.


I really love how these pictures turned out and the contrast between the models red hair and the washed denim. I also love the natural enviroments add a certain quality to the pictures.

Model: Laura Kate Sills
Stylist: Michelle Whittaker

Michelle xx

Sunday, 7 November 2010

Street dance photo shoot.....

For this shoot I knew of an industrial site that has graffiti all over the walls of the entrance. The graffiti is done by kids who live in the area after the industrial park closes. This created the perfect backdrop to shoot the street dance look.

So yesterday I went to recce the area as it has been a few years since I came across the place and I took pictures so I could bring them home to plan how I wanted to the shoot to go.



I want to use the grafiti in contrast to the clothing worn. I have also researched some street dance moves that I want to use as poses for the photographs.
The street dance shoot went well and my models/dancers were able to insert attitude into the pictures also which helped create the atmosphere.

Models: Roxanne McPherson & Ben Hall
Photographer: Dave Adams -
Stylist: Michelle Whittaker
Michelle xx

Thursday, 28 October 2010

Witchcraft shoot

I have been eager to get out and get my photography shoots started as I am worried if I don't get them done soon the layout of my trend book wont get done until last minute as the photography is a big part of my book.

Today I was able to get a team together to get the witchcraft photo shoot shot. I am very lucky to have my friend and my model live in Burley as this was the perfect setting to shoot the right look.

I have drawn inspriation from the Photographer Antonella Arismendi and the shoot Merkabah and Salem Witches.

Model: Laura Kate Sills
Photographer: David Adams -
Syling and Make-up: Michelle Whittaker

The shoot went really well and some of the pictures turned out so much better than any of us could have hoped. Lets just hope the other photography shoots come together as well as this one has :)

Michelle xx

Friday, 22 October 2010

Time to choose my trends.....

I am so excited by this project and the ideas I am producing however that’s not to say I haven’t struggled to get the starting point in some of my trends.
We have the three themes to follow:

For ethical it took me back to the last project I did where I recycled clothing and stripped it back to make a new garment. This time I decided to fashion the trend to renew items and make your old faithful fashionable again.

The title street straight away screamed street dance to me and I am personally a fan of any TV and films that are dance related so I felt this would be a good option as it sparked interest but also I knew of TV and Films that were just emerging which would support my research that this would be a growing trend.

The title Ethnic was the trend that I found difficult to develop. I first thought about ethnic as being tribal and I then found myself thinking about Tribal body art and body modifications but from this point I felt I hit a brick wall and couldn’t develop the ideas any further.
I was lucky to be able catch a moment of Anya’s time where I was able to discuss my ideas so far with her. From my idea of tribal she was able to help me see where the idea could develop to. We discussed the idea to look into modern body art and modifications which brought us onto tattoos and piercings and then this also sparked that this could be also thought of as gothic influences.
We then discussed gothic influences and came up with the idea of witches and witchcraft which really excited me.
I came away and began researching and I soon found that this would be a strong trend. Through my initial research I was able to see that there were a few films and catwalk collections emerging.

Monday, 4 October 2010

and so a new year begins.....

Today was the first day back at uni and I am raring to go, I've been eager to get back all summer....the holidays were too long! I love being at uni but I am also so excited to finish the course so I can leave my part time job which I find monotonous and finally pursue a career I enjoy!

Today was also the day we had our first project of the second year briefed.
The project brief is to create a trend book based around fashion forecasting for either SS11 or AW11 the trend books. The trend book will be based on 3 trends which will create the ingredients to the book.
I am so happy I have chosen to do promotion this year instead of design. Being back the thought of being in the studio designing and making turns me off.

Michelle xx

Tuesday, 13 April 2010

Now and Next.....

So now we are back after Easter and I am now looking to get my head down and finish the year with my best work possible.

I am extremely excited to finish my design to see how it all comes together........and fingers crossed be shortlisted for the 2nd year fashion got to work hard for that..!!

I am also extremely excited about our work experience placement.....I cannot wait to get to go and work out in the fashion industry. I am going to work really hard and give a good impression so that I may have a chance of returning for either work experience or in the future have the chance of a job if I enjoy it enough!!!

Bring on the next 8 weeks and also bring on the summer........we need some sunshine to brighten our days :)

Wednesday, 24 March 2010

Buying and Merchandising deadline

Today I handed in my Buying and Merchandising assignment. I've been working really hard this last week to pull the assignment together and to make a really good go of it. I still have not been able to connect with this assignment and I still feel most of what I learnt in class did not have any relevance to this final piece of work.
I based my project on H&M as it is a store that I feel is different from a conventional high street store. They are very much up on trend like New Look, Topshop, River Island etc but the way in which they promote themselves means that they encourage customers to have their own personal style and not follow high street looks.
Just got to wait for the results now........fingers crossed :)

Tuesday, 23 March 2010

The verdict......

The toile review....

So after the first meeting when the final design was established I wanted to make sure my design showed the true potential that my illustrations had originally.
I was both excited and nervous for the feedback. I was really happy with my toile but I can not wait to get started on my final design so the colour theme can bring life to the design.

I was happy with happy with the comments that were made about my design in the toile review. We agreed the concept of my design worked well but that a few areas needed tweaking and I was given some inspiration on how to tie (hehe get the pun) up the top and for it to continue the theme throughout.


Sunday, 21 March 2010

I'm loving it, loving it, loving it......

AWESOME and FAB would be just two words I would use to describe my time at westfields assisting in 'The greatest fashion show on earth'.

After a very exhausting and thrilling 3 days its all over and I am really sad that I will not be going back tomorrow to still be a part of it.
I loved every minute of it...even when we had to run out to Morrison's to get lunch for all involved I loved just being in a working environment that was keeping me busy. I just thrived on the experience and I want more....


I met some lovely people that I will definitely stay in contact with and I also got a contact of a girl who is also at AUCB studying Events Management which may be a great help when we come to do our own Fashion show next year so overall a very successful and enjoyable time and I just didn't want to come home....... :(


Friday, 19 March 2010

The greatest fashion show on earth......

So on Tuesday (just two days ago) I found out about an opportunity to go up to London and be a dresser for a Doll event called 'The greatest fashion show on earth' at Westfields.
When I found out about the opportunity I just knew I had to do it as I had not had the opportunity this year to be part of London On:Off fashion week. Luckily I was up to date with my toile and had only a few bits left to complete so that was not a worry and all I needed to do was to sort out accommodation, which is where my best friend in London came I was set.
After a day of rushing around like mad I drove up to London ready to start my experience today.....Oh and what a day! I am so glad I came up to be a part of the show.
Its only been a day but yet I love it....The other dressers are lovely and so is the model I am dressing. I just loved the buzz of being backstage and even after a 12 hour day I am not tired as I am still high on all the adrenaline. I love being able to work but what I love more is having the chance to work in a fashion environment even just if it is a few days.

:) I am one happy lady :)

Tuesday, 16 March 2010

She's gone and done it again......

Apologies.....again.......I can't believe I've left it so long again to post! Life seems to pass me by without letting me know!

So what's been going on since my last post.......well......

3rd February - Buying and Merchandising

I am really enjoying the Buying and Merchandising Class. I feel it is teaching me a lot about this particular area of fashion as well as giving us the hard fact that its not an easy job.....I'm ready for the fight in the industry though!
I love that in each class we have the opportunity to get involved and we regularly have debates which also fuels my interest.

5th February - Lectra

I am thoroughly enjoying Lectra lessons. I have found I have been able to pick up the system relatively quickly and I can see the benefits from using the system to create a pattern.
I think throughout my further design projects I will consider using Lectra to complete my patterns as it could prove useful when making necessary changes.

8th February - Design

In our design class we are working on 100 designs for our manifesto project. 
I began my design process by researching upcoming trends from the Peclers trend forcasting book. From the upcoming trends I was able to find around 8 looks that I could develop for my own designs. My designs used the concept from the trend forcasting mixed with my colour themes. 
Currently I am halfway through my designs but I am starting to find it difficult to complete the requested amount. I feel I have reached a block as I originally began to draw my designs in great detail rather than just sketches to develop from. For the further designs that need to be completed I am planning to use what we have learnt in our concentrated Illustration lessons and Illustrate my favourite designs ready for my final presentation of 6 designs.

18th February - Jersey Workshop

Today I used the class to construct my Jersey T-shirt. I found working with Jersey very easy. The construction of the garment proved to be very simple and quick and I was finished within a few hours.

28th February - Choosing a design

Today was D day for our design presentation.
I was ready and prepared with my 6 designs and one being my particular favourite. I was really happy with my the outcome of my designs but I was also nervous what would be made of my concept now visualised through designs.
My final design came from our assignment where we had to select 3 designs (naming them A, B &C) and collaborate these designs together to develop further designs. I found by collaborating designs I was able to come up with better concepts than I could have thought of off the top of my head.

My tutorial went really well and my favourite design was approved to be taken on to be constructed with a few minor alterations which will actually enhance my design.

26th February - Lectra

Today was the final deadline for our Lectra project which consisted of a pattern being created through Lectra and then a Jersey T-shirt made from the pattern piece. 
I had already finished my T-shirt a week before so for the rest of my lessons up until my deadline I focused on taking in all I could with Lectra so that I could use what I had learnt to create a pattern for my design for my Manifesto project.

1st March - Final Design Construction

This week I began to construct the toile of my final design. This was proving quite difficult as my design is made up of second hand ties and scarves so to create the effect of using ties I had to cut tie shapes out of material to construct together so I am able to recreate the look I want so this can be assessed properly in my review.

10th March - Buying and Merchandising

Sooo I finally got down to writing my Buying and Merchandising Assignment last week, after being so inspired with the classes so far I thought I would take to this project and be able to create a great piece of work. However once I got started on the work I soon found that I felt deflated as all that had interested me  in this subject was missing from the assignment. I had been so inspired with our lessons and felt that this would lead to us being able to use all of our knowledge in the assignment unfortunately this was not the case and I found none of what we had learnt really held any relevance. 

16th March - Final Design Construction continued...

My main focus this term was my Manifesto Project. I am very keen to make sure my toile shows off my design in the right light.
I have been spending every spare minute in the studio to ensure that my garment is not rushed and corners are not cut. This week is the final week before toile review. I have continued working on my garment and I am very happy with the results so far just hoping I can pull it all together and I can present it well next week.

Thursday, 28 January 2010

Missed but not forgotten.....

I can't believe its been so long since my last blog! I've been so caught up in all our projects and assignments that I have put off blogging and its now February!!!! Where do the weeks go?!!

Right so what have I been up to since christmas.......

12th January - First day back after christmas

I was in a mad panic about the completion and handing in of our Design project on Black and White and Melting Pot. Over christmas I had spent lots of time arranging all the research and designs and had began presenting it all in my book. I had left the presentation until last as I thought this would take me 2 minutes but I was very wrong!!!!! The presentation took a lot longer to complete.....this is definitely something I need to remember for the next project and begin earlier.

18th January - Deadline day

So today didn't start so well......I had been  up most of the night with my design book as I am a perfectionist and still wasn't happy with the presentation. I left the house to get to university for the deadline of 9.30am only to realise half the way to university that I had forgotten to pick up the folder containing my mood boards!!!! NIGHTMARE!!! I quickly rushed home grabbed them, got to my parking space and I ran......luckily making it to university for 9.27am......Phew!!!!

*Big reminder to be more organised when leaving the house*

20th January - Buying and Merchandising

I was very excited today about having our first class in Buying and Merchandising. I have been waiting all year for an greater insight into the Buying and Merchandising world as it is a particular area I would like to persue as a career. John Maynard is full of knowledge on the subject and even though at times the 3 hour lectures seem a lot I still find them thoroughly interesting and informative.

21st January - Lectra

Today I joined group 1 for Lectra class as I am moving tomorrow to my new flat!!!! Yey!!!

We have just started the new Lectra unit which I am finding really useful. Its really fun playing with the pattern layout and I feel the skills we are learning with the system are invaluable.

25th January - Manifesto

We have officially now began out project Manifesto.....This project comprises of creating a mission statement - Manifesto, Customer Profile and 100 Designs, from this work we will also be going on to construct one of our designed garments. I am really looking forward to the construction as it will be great to finally make one of our designs however I am daunted by the 100 designs we need to complete.