The Savvy Sage of Sewing Stimulation

Designers and how to look at their clothes

More than once I’ve said that designers almost HAVE to design stuff that’s pretty outlandish to get the attention of the jaded and experienced eyes of the fashion magazine editors. To do that sometimes they appear to do some pretty crazy stuff.

Marcy Tilton who makes regular trips to Paris, saw this in the Gaultier RTW store in Paris, and fell in love with it.  That means that the fabric was probably pretty darn special.

This is the garment that Marcy saw in Paris with the face woven on it.  Know Gaultier it was done with incredible detail.

For me, out of this Fall 2013 RTW show, is this gem

Yeah, the lines on this are pretty traditional, but there’s something else really kickin’ about this.

One of the rules of tailoring is that the collar width should be in proportion (or at the least very close in measurement) to the lapel width.  This is just a formula that helps keep things in perspective.  Lapels that  are too thick (wide) with collars that are dinky thin make the lapel look out of proportion to each other.

Having seen some of the couture garments up close and even altered some, you would be frankly amazed at the beauty and unbelievably meticulous detail that these garments contain.

But on this jacket Gaultier breaks the rules and he gets away with it!.  I had to see a close up of the jacket to finally see it.


On here the blue line (width of the collar) does not match or come close to matching the width of the lapel (yellow line).  But this jacket does not look out of proportion nor does either the collar or the lapel look out of proportion.  Actually this genius has tricked our eye, and has developed a collar that is wide enough to be in proportion to the lapel without showing the width of the collar.  It’s sort of technical, and I see how he’s done it, but this is the genius of a master designer.

Gaultier has messed with the collar piece and designed it so that the notch is redone to make it look like the collar width is thin, but the collar actually is wider than it looks.  He’s done this by redesigning the collar.

All this hullabaloo is to make a point that even though in the photographs these outfits look pretty ridiculous, they are anything but.  And I’m not saying that all of us need to be out in there in the latest trend on the runway, but what I am saying is that these looks are very much worth examining – like this collar treatment, to cause us to think about garments, assembly, techniques and materials in a completely different way.

I can only imagine how many hours Gaultier  spent figuring out this collar and messing with it…..and it was for one design out of  56 designs for one collection out of seven collections for a year…..a flit down the runway and off to the next collection, set of designs and problems to work out.  Really amazing when  you think about it that way.

And for thus, we can learn a lot from these designers and how to step up our sewing and assembly skills.



Leave a Reply