Find me on Google+ So says Lu...: 2009

Wednesday, 18 November 2009

Long time no speak!

Soo, yes I know it has been a while, got a lot going on, what with 4 deadlines coming up at an alarmingly fast rate. It would really help if I wasn't in bed right now in pain with my stupid hips, but at least it gives me some time to catch up on here.
The truth is I haven't really got that much to say, all I have been doing is working on the sketch books for my projects, and I know I promised photos, and I will try to put them up as soon as possible!
We have started to do the final design for our skirt project, so that should be taking shape shortly, and I will take some photos. Speaking of designing, a mini task in college the other day was to take a piece of fabric, and without cutting it, design a dress. Ours turned out pretty well, and I took photos, but for some reason they have disappeared off my phone, so I will have to look into that.
Erm, what else? Oh I used a sewing machine for the second time in my life today, would have been a better experience if it wasn't making me go dizzy!
Right, I think that is it for now, I will get into gear and get those photos up!
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Friday, 23 October 2009

Just an update!

Well I know it has been a little while and I apologise for that, I have had a bit of a hectic time what with family birthday's, parties and Carnage, (what a night!!).
So I thought I would just update you with the fashion work I have done recently.
On Tues 14th Oct I went and had a look at the Marks and Spencer's Archive at Leeds University. The staff in there were very helpful and it is definitely worth a look around if you are near the Parkinson building. I got some information about the history of the company, and I have written off to an archivist at head office to see if I can get hold of some swing tags and point of sale for my research. I took some photos which I might put on here at some point, (I am at home in sunny Flamborough at the moment so I don't have them to upload).
On Weds 15th Oct I went on a college trip to Harrogate, to the Mercer Gallery and the Pump Museum. This was very informative; we looked at garments constructed as early as 1815, and it was amazing to see how much work went into these beautiful clothes. I will definitely upload the photo's when I get back to Leeds. The information we gathered on this trip will help us to create our time lines. At the Pump Museum we got an insight into what life was like in the past and this helps us to appreciate why clothes were the way they were.
After this we had some free time and got lunch and did a little bit of shopping. We visited a fantastic vintage shop, I could have gone mad in there if I had the time and money, and I will definitely be revisiting there!
On Saturday I went for a wander around Leeds with Libby, (pictured below), and discovered a new favourite store: Ark. I had never really heard of it before, let alone been in for a nosey, but they really do have some beautiful, reasonably priced clothes. I nearly bought a dress, I may be back for it yet! We also checked out a couple of vintage stores, and spied a Juicy Couture bag in Oxfam for £45!! If it didn't have a couple of marks on it I would have bought it.
We also went to an arts and crafts fair at Leeds Town Hall. There was some really cool and quirky things in there, I am going to check out the ebay shop of one girl who made really wacky ear-rings out of lego bricks and other crazy things. When I find it I will link it on here =]
And I think that is it really. Possibly going on a trip to London with college in the next few weeks, oh, and I booked my 'Clothes Show Live' ticket... exciting times!
So, I will be posting some photo's soon! Watch this space =]
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Tuesday, 13 October 2009

Harvey Nichols Pics

The Harvey Nichols Photo's...
Me and Libby Libby, Me, Ben (looking dashing =p)

The Fashion show, (beautiful male models...yum!)

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Sunday, 11 October 2009

The Harvey Nichols Fashion Show!

I finally got the photos onto my computer, so I can now post about the marvellous evening that was the Harvey Nichols Fashion Show.
The store was packed with people of all ages, from 7 to 70, all there to admire the Autumn/Winter '09 collection. The £10 ticket price was definitely reasonable as there was beer, wine and champagne on tap, (which we all took advantage of).
The fashion show itself was slightly slow, (in comparison to the upbeat music), there was large gaps between different collections, but the models were accompanied by dancers, which was a nice touch and added to the entertainment factor. The clothes were stunning, however, we did not get any information about who the garments were by, which was a bit disappointing.
Another perk of the evening was that there was 10% off clothing and accessories and the £10 ticket price was redeemable against purchases in these areas. I treated myself to some 'FitFlop' boots, which sadly were not covered by this offer, as they are classed as cosmetics. I am in love with these boots though, they use 'micro wobble board' technology, which tones your legs while you are walking, and improves your posture; heaven for me, they feel like walking on air, and I feel they will not be off my feet for a long time!
We stayed right until the end, which was around 10pm, and I collected my free bottle of champagne on the way out, (if you spent over £75 you were given free champagne!!).
My friends and I really enjoyed the night and I would recommend to anyone that they get a ticket for the next one; even just for the free bar!
(I will put the images on another post as the internet is really slow this evening and is not allowing me to upload photos =[)

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Tuesday, 6 October 2009

The 4 Projects

As I said I would I will now outline the 4 projects I am undertaking and my initial ideas for them.

Project 1- 'Connect with the Customer' In this project I will be designing e-newsletters for Pure Collection Limited. I have to be aware of seasonal trends and have to be able to reinvent them to encourage consumers to keep buying the products on offer. I will, with the aid of my classmates, produce a trend report of Leeds (explained in previous post), and will have to be able to identify my target customer and create a customer profile. During this project I will also be studying advertising and collecting other e-newsletters to build up a file of research. At the end of this project I will have produced four consecutive months of e-newsletters, along with mood boards and other mini projects I have been set.

Project 2- 'Pick and Mix' This project's aim is to collaborate an icon or celebrity and a high street store to create a collection that suits both the icon and the store, and to brand it successfully. The best current example of this is the 'Kate Moss Topshop' collection. During this project I will carry out a lot of research into my icon and my chosen store. The final collection will consist of 10 pieces, and I will be considering forecasting to select the fabrics and colours. The final part of this project will be the designing of the packaging, swing tags and logos. At the end of this project I will be able to present each part of the project individually either on boards or in sketchbooks and files.
My initial ideas for this project are to design a collection for Marks and Spencer's inspired by Joanna Lumley. She is very inspirational to me as she is a keen human and animal rights activist, and she cares for the environment. She also has an interesting upbringing and career, and I hope to bring some of this out in the collection I design. I chose Marks and Spencer's as it is a well established store, which has something for all women, and is environmentally aware. I am very keen on conservation and eco-fashion and I took this into consideration when choosing my icon and store.

Project 3- 'From Vision to Consumer' In this project I will researching and learning about how fashion, retail and marketing have developed since the 1900's to the present day. I will be producing a time line of the major events, and an essay on a particular era on the time line.
I will also be producing a skirt, and will learn the whole design process, from choosing fabrics and pattern cutting, to the finishing touches. I will research different brands and create designs based on my inspiration. I will also be producing a brand for my skirt, which will include designing logos, swing tickets and hangers.
My initial ideas for this project is to design a skirt with a surfy theme, as I really like surf brands such as Roxy and Quicksilver. I have already started some research by talking to sales assistants in stores such as Quicksilver, White Stuff and Fat Face. I have signed up for some catalogues which I will be able to take inspiration from.

Project 4- 'My Book' The main aim of this project is to be able to market myself in the working world. The 'My Book' will contain my CV, information about myself, and will demonstrate all the creative skills I possess which will help me in the fashion field. It is open to interpretation how the 'My Book' should be presented so it is up to me to get creative and present it in the best way I can.
My initial ideas for this project is to present the 'My Book' in an A2 sketch book, as that way I can fit a lot onto one page. I will include my CV, information about me, and my hip problems, (I think this is important as it is quite a big part of my life). I will maybe also include some knitting as I very much enjoy it; and I will try and incorporate some other skills I am developing while taking part in this course.

During all my projects I will be writing short essays of reflection. These are important as they give me the chance to think about what I could have done differently to improve myself, and this is a skill that is vital in business.
As I said in my first post, this blog will be used as part of my reflection, and to document my work. I would also appreciate criticism, good or bad, so I know how I could improve.

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The Leeds Trip

OK, so today I can hardly move, (stupid hips), so now is as good a time as any to tell you about our trip around Leeds yesterday.
The aim of the trip was to analyse the trends in all types of clothing and accessories, and we will put this information together to make a 'book' of the current trends of the season; this will be used to aid us in making our e-newsletters, (one of the four projects we are completing this term; I will do a post outlining the four projects next).
My group, of Demi, Ella and I, were set the task of discovering the 4 key trends of the season in general.
We went in many different high street stores, such as H&M, River Island and Topshop, to see what the biggest 'stories' were, and what were the most obvious trends. These were normally found at the front of house.
Overall, we found that sequins and embellishments are the biggest trend of the season, being found anywhere and everywhere, and for all ages, (even M&S had many sequins on ranges aimed at the older generation).
Structure is the second most dominant trend of the season. Stores like Zara emphasised this with dedicated point of sale and with the front of house being packed with large shoulder pads and body con dresses, all of which with a relatively high price point, but beautiful tactile fabrics that were cleverly chosen.
Tribal and folk is a trend which we have seen through summer, but is being carried on into winter with big chunky, tribal patterned knits, and big tribal prints on long t-shirts. Leather is also being spotted in this trend, with worn leather jackets that look quite 'cowboys and Indians'.
Different leather and prints are also being seen in the final trend; punk rock. There is much 80's influence in this trend, but with some modern twists. T-shirts with punky prints and leather trousers were spotted while researching this trend.

Sometimes it was difficult to separate the trends as many overlap; especially sequins and embellishments, which can be found incorporated into all the other trends listed above.

While we were researching the trends, we took note of how different stores emphasise different parts of their marketing strategy.
For example, Topshop has clever and interesting point of sale all over the store, with big displays naming each section of the shop floor, e.g. knitwear. However, the swing tags are relatively plain and are the same on most, if not all garments, (excluding the Kate Moss for Topshop collection).
In comparison, River Island pays more attention to their swing tags, having different, elaborate and intricate designs for each 'story' or type of garment. The store is very clean cut and has a funky edge, but there are not many displays on the walls, as it is clear that the attention to detail of the swing tags is the major tool in their branding campaign.
Marks and Spencer's have another approach. The swing tags for each collection are different, but are still relatively simple, but the biggest emphasis is on the mannequin displays dotted around the shop, and the large pictures and mission statements on the walls.
Maybe this is different because the target customer of Marks and Spencer's is generally of a higher age bracket than the previously mentioned stores, but it is interesting how different clothing retailers tackle marketing and point of sale.

Overall I found this trip very interesting and educational and it has given me many ideas for the projects I am undertaking. I will probably take some more time to carry out further research on my own, as I will need more information about Marks and Spencer's in particular, as they are going to be a key part to one of my projects.
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Friday, 2 October 2009

Well I Finally Got Around To It!

Hello everyone!
Well I finally got around to setting up this blog!
So I suppose it would make sense to begin with who I am and what this blog is all about.
I am Lucy, I have just turned 20 and I have just started my first year of a Foundation Degree in Fashion Marketing and Retail at Harrogate College.
I live in Leeds in halls, but I love to go home to my family, boyfriend and pet tortoise called Yoshi. Leeds is proving an interesting place to live as far as the fashion world is concerned; I have already bought my tickets for Harvey Nichols' Fashion Show on Wednesday, so expect a post about that later :)
This blog is basically going to be about me, my life, and my course. I intend on displaying my college work on here to document it all in one place. I will also evaluate my work through this blog, and will reflect on how aspects of my work could have been improved if I had done things differently.
So yeah, that's me really, I look forward to blogging from now on, and I hope I don't start to bore everyone.
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