For the new year I've started a new sketchbook, no 34, to record as many of the clothes I can remember making over the years ever since my childhood when I used to dress my Cindy dolls.
Justine gave me a lovely book for Christmas and I started by sketching the figures and trying to get my head round the skinny elongated bodies which bear very little relation to real life. I've ended up drawing the clothes on body shapes a bit more like my own! I searched my photo albums for ideas and hairstyles in particular and my tiny college sketchbook for some of the original designs.
I found a very early photo that I would definitely hesitate to show anybody but it did show the first blouse I remember making. It also reminded me of how thick and uncontrollable my hair was!
I made a couple of dresses around this time but they were from commercial patterns so not very original, I particularly remember a bottle green jersey number my Granny gave me which turned out rather unflattering for a 14 year old! These 2 tops were favourites as I had started to use old sheets to make my own designs, including a pink shift dress with the same pointy collar as the green one.
I started a two year dress design course at Croydon college of art in September 1965 full of hope of becoming famous. This jumpsuit was a favourite made in needlecord with trumpet sleeves and big flared hems. My boyfriend at the time was a photography student and he took several photos in the college studio, but sadly now they seem to have got lost.
The winter fashion that year included the baby bonnet, of which I made several including this pink wool one made with the leftovers of the dress fabric. That herringbone suit was made from a length of fabric my mum found in her stash, the skirt was rather short at the time and I certainly turned a few heads when I went out in my bright pink tights! I suddenly remembered the little fur edged boots as I finished this drawing.
I found the photo below at the bottom of a long forgotten pile and was reminded of this little outfit, also photographed by my boyfriend.
As you can see I'm still struggling with the figure drawing, the copied poses are ok but they seem a bit static, especially as I've had to draw in pencil first, not being confident enough yet to go straight in with the pen.
Well that's as far as I've got today, there will be more to come very soon so I do hope you'll come back to join me on my trip along memory lane.