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Marlborough School Student Newspaper
The Student News Site of Marlborough School

The UltraViolet

The Student News Site of Marlborough School

The UltraViolet

Learn to sew: Know the show

By Milan ’25

Everyone from a high-profile fashion designer to someone who is still dressed by their mom can learn from fashion shows. Big brands like Louis Vuitton and Versace, as well as local fashion from up and coming artists, can be very valuable for aspiring designers. Today, fashion shows are very accessible through YouTube. If you are interested in learning how to watch fashion shows in a different way, keep reading.

  1. Haute couture vs. ready-to-wear

When most people think of high-fashion shows, they first think of a haute couture line. Haute couture is bizarre art. Imagine avant-garde, eccentric fashion that is not seen in everyday fashion. It is important to understand the difference between haute couture and ready-to-wear in order to know how to approach different shows. It is often a product of the artist’s limitless imagination and is not meant for mass production. Haute couture pieces are tailored and meant exclusively for the wearer. On the other hand, ready-to-wear fashion is meant to be sold “off the rack” and is more socially accepted. When designing for pure creativity, look to a haute couture show. If you want to see what most people will be wearing in the future or high-end versions of the clothing you may wear, check out a ready-to-wear show.

  1. Know your seasons

There are four different fashion seasons: spring/summer, fall/winter, pre-fall and resort. However, the most popular and influential seasons are spring/summer (from January to June) and fall/winter (from July to December.) Seasoned fashion shows are often released a season ahead to give the designers time for production and consumers time to recognize and buy the collection.

Tip: To find the show you are looking for, put this formula in the youtube search bar: [Brand]+[season]+[year]+[category]. Example: Chanel spring/summer 1991 ready-to-wear.

  1. Study elements, not whole looks

Even when you do not plan to purchase the clothing you see in fashion shows, they can still be very helpful. Fashion shows are useful for predicting what will be in style for the next season. Fast fashion brands are also looking to the same fashion shows as you are to know what trends to incorporate in their next collection. Look for recurring elements across shows to know what designers are into. Short skirts or long skirts? Shiny or matte? These small details are very capable of dominating the brands you currently buy from.

  1. Watch videos to broaden fashion knowledge 

Watch trend predictions on YouTube, read about changes in the fashion industry and learn about the history behind fashion trends. This will broaden your knowledge and vocabulary on fashion. Knowing more, you will be able to make more intentional decisions about the details in your own outfits and designs.

  1. How to apply to your own designs

Copying is OK! When first starting out, it is important to understand that it is normal to take inspiration from professional designers. Fashion design is art. Similar to replicating a painting for practice, recreating design is accepted because it will most likely not be just like the original. You can use a Chanel look as a base for your design and add a personal touch. This way you will learn a lot about what you like, what looks good and what elements you want to continue to use. Try incorporating the trends you see into your own designs and see what you can come up with. Eventually, you will have your own personal style!

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