Utopia is a contemporary catwalk collection in which the line-up emulates the process of transformation in which a life form such as a caterpillar evolves into a butterfly known as metamorphosis. Primary research was conducted at Stratford butterfly farm, this is. Emily documented her inspiration through video and imagery to refer to throughout the design process. She was able to see the many stages of metamorphosis which played a big part in constructing her silhouettes for the line-up.
During her development creating her collection she focused on the main silhouette and scale in the first term then moved onto the detailing and experimentation in the second term. One thing she did throughout was exploring working with different layers of fabrics which meant creating many samples with combinations of materials and varying techniques. Organza was mainly used throughout the collection primarily because it flows really well and is the perfect material to emulate the delicate iridescent elements of butterfly wings. She also paired this fabric with tulle and netting to create strong holding garments that have contrasting materials to create texture and depth. During her fabric research she invested time exploring different textiles to find the perfect weight, colour and finish; other materials she’d explored included jersey, denim.
Throughout her design development this year she has grown to enjoy doing more experimentation especially with her illustrations and research in her sketchbook. Before Emily was able to return to campus she used leftover fabric scraps and samples to create miniature toiles of the garments that she had planned to create in order to test how to construct them and also to see whether they work well. “I felt like this was important because I didn’t want to waste any of my materials and also it helped me to portray my design ideas better in addition to getting an idea of the scale of fabric I would need for the final toiling and garments”.
This is Emily’s final collection line up, she felt like it was important to create this collection in order to challenge herself to think outside the box and create garments that were more complicated and of larger scale than she had ever done before. “I believe that this experience has really helped me as a designer and also as a person to explore my abilities and transform my illustrations and thoughts into real pieces that could be worn”.