Apparel Design

Courses

  • Fall 2015

    HISTORY OF DRESS

    This class examines fashion in Europe and America from the eighteenth century to the present, covering the industrial revolution through the development of couture and postmodern fashion. It analyzes clothing as a social and cultural artifact, central to the construction of group and individual identity. Lectures and readings explore the production, consumption, use and meanings of dress, and will be supplemented by visits to the RISD museum. Course work will be comprised of group and independent research, written papers, and oral presentations.
    Required class for Apparel Sophomores; Liberal Arts elective credit for nonmajors.

    JUNIOR CUT & SEW STUDIO

    Students concentrate on designing with 'cut and sew' knit fabric. Through draping with knit fabrics on the form, students learn to utilize the inherent properties of knits. Instruction in 'cut and sew' construction is combined with pattern making techniques, enabling students to execute their concepts as finished garments.
    Estimated Material Cost: $250.00

    Major requirement, Apparel Design majors only
    Registration by Apparel Design department, course not available via web registration

    JUNIOR MACHINE KNITWEAR STUDIO

    This course is an introduction to the creative and technical possibilities of the knitting machine. Through the development of knit swatches, the course will cover the following essentials of sweater knit design including graphing, calculating gauge and tension, shaping of a knit body, exploration of a diverse range of knit stitches, professional finishing of a knit garment, and how to select the best yarn to execute your final garment. Students will also develop unique trims and finishes to enhance their designs.
    Estimated Cost of Materials: $250.00
    Major requirement, Apparel Design majors only
    Registration by Apparel Design Department, course not available via web registration
    Must also register for: APPAR 3130/3132

    JUNIOR/DESIGN/DRAW/CAD

    In Design/Drawing II, Junior students focus on designing for knitwear, experimenting three dimensionally as they explore the unique properties of knit fabrics. Color, texture, yarn and stitch variations are examined as students also design using the diverse properties of machine knitwear. Student build on existing drawing skills, learning new rendering techniques to communicate their knitwear designs. Students work with models to develop individual drawing styles while building effective portfolios.
    Estimated Material Cost: $200.00
    Major requirement, Apparel Design majors only
    Registration by Apparel Design department, course not available via web registration

    SENIOR COLLECTION DEVELOPMENT

    During three integrated studios, students learn to expand the design process by developing professional collections from concept to presentation. Portfolio assignments are aimed at strengthening students' established styles and experimentation in new areas. Studios build on their draping, drafting and construction skills through individual instruction as they complete a collection for final presentation to the visiting critics. During studio, students also learn to use the computer as a design tool for product visualization and presentation.
    Estimated Material Cost: $1,000.00
    Major requirement, Apparel Design majors only
    Registration by Apparel Design department, course not available via web registration

    SOPHOMORE DESIGN/DRAW

    The design component introduces research methods and conceptual skills, to be used with the medium of fabric. The drawing class focuses on the development of fashion croquis, drawing from the model, technical flats and presentation plates to effectively communicate the visual language of their design intentions. Students develop research methods and learn the importance of concepts, color and fabric stories.
    Estimated Material Costs: $250.00
    Major requirement, Apparel Design majors only
    Registration by Apparel Design department, course not available via web registration

    SOPHOMORE INTRO TO APPAREL STUDIO

    This introductory course lays the foundation for the design process through draping, pattern drafting and construction. Students make basic patterns and proceed with variations to develop pattern making skills and design concepts. Weekly textile seminars introduce students to fibers and yarns, fabric types, properties and uses.
    Estimated Material Cost: $100.00
    Major requirement, Apparel Design majors only
    Registration by Apparel Design department, course not available via web registration

    Wintersession 2016

    *NORTHERN EUROPE SHOE DESIGN PERCEPTION, HISTORY & PROTOTYPING

    Using the creative cultures of Germany, Netherlands and Belgium, students will use the experience of footwear design as a way to more deeply understand and expand their own personal design process. This course will inform through the practice of creative introspections inspired by Da Vinci's methods as well as from Northern European history, design practice and cultural aesthetic.
    There will be a series studio and factory visits within a variety of design fields supported by museum and gallery visits. Students will also use their sketchbooks as visual and reflective journals to practice insightful daily exercises to advance their design process and footwear designs. During the visit to Northern Europe we will have three presentations, to share cultural explorations, process development and the progress of shoe designs. The final shoe deisgn will reporesent the influence of these explorations, and the manifestation of an expanded design methodology.
    Permission of instructor required.
    All students are required to remain in good academic standing in order to participate in the WS travel course/studio. Failure to remain in good academic standing can lead to removal from the course either before, or during, the course. Also, in cases where WS travel courses and studios do not reach student capacity, the course may be cancelled after the last day of Wintersession travel course registration. As such, all students are advised not to purchase flights for participation in Wintersession travel courses until the course is confirmed to run, which happens within the week after the final Wintersession travel course registration period
    Estimated Travel cost: $4,897.00, airfare not included. ***Off-Campus Study***

    DRAWING FOR FASHION

    This course aims to immerse the students in the art of illustrating for fashion. Through practical experimentation, the students will explore the varied modes of drawing in this design area. In working from the live model, students will develop their own creative responses to traditional drawing techniques through a program of unconventional exercises. Dynamic in its teaching and studio practice, this course deconstructs classical figure drawing in favor of a raw intuitive approach. The fundamentals of proportion, composition and media are addressed whilst emphasis is placed upon expressive image making. In the need to convey and garment construction, students will investigate the means of communicating concept alongside design detail. Image making in the forms of portfolio presentation and illustrating for magazine editorial rely upon an innate skill for storytelling. From the outset, students will question their own creativity and desire to make. Focused drawing sessions are peppered with design challenges, with the course culminating in a final self-negotiated project.
    Estimated Materials Cost: $250.00

    DRESSED BODIES: BASIC APPAREL TECHNIQUES FOR NON-MAJORS

    Dressed bodies, is a course conceived to expose students from external departments across RISD campus to a variety of making practices stemming from traditional apparel design practices. Students are expected to bring their current skill set and their apparel related curiosity with the aims of developing a personal project or enhancing apparel related skills. Clothing development, brand, soft-goods development, principles for creating 3 dimensional works around the body from 2 dimensional sketches and patterns as well as basic sewing skills will be covered throughout the body of this course. Principles learned here may be applied to a variety of fine arts processes as well as product design. Students will be encouraged to develop a better understanding of materials and construction techniques while exploring deeper relationships between 2D shape and 3D form. This dynamic, technical and creative class; supports students further understanding of sewing construction and how it directly relates to- and impacts any creative or technical project, ultimately broadening the students understanding of both material properties and essential technical components of fabric construction.
    *Components of this class are seminar and self-directed.

    HOOPED SKIRTS AND BUSTLES

    This course focuses on hooped skirts and bustles. These structures can also be seen as sculpture or architecture - give volume and fullness to clothing and change the natural silhouette of the body. In the first phase students will analyze 19th century undergarments such as crinolines, bustles and lobsters, at the RISD museum's collection. Students will afterwards observe how these accessories can be seen in film costume (Gone With the Wind, The Piano), and in contemporary fashion (Jean-Paul Gaultier, Alexander McQueen, Comme des Garçons). In the second phase students will use their analysis to create new crinolines or bustles, made out of unconventional materials, in other scales, emphasizing different parts of the body. In a playful way, the structures made in studio will question our relation to history, to body morphology, and gender.
    Estimated Material Costs: TBD

    Spring 2016

    INTRODUCTION TO BASIC SHOEMAKING

    Shoes are an everyday commodity; but do you know how many are steps involved? In this course, students will handcraft a basic pair of cemented construction shoes from start to finish. This includes beginning by creating a basic pattern, draping the last, cutting (clicking) the leather, sewing (closing) the upper, building a stacked leather heel, and finishing the sole. We will approach the requirements of constructing a shoe through choice of material, characteristics of leather, and how to utilize them in laying out the pattern. In the process of the construction from pattern to shoe, we will work with basic tools for handcrafted shoemaking including a shoemaker's knife, closers hammer, buff stick, lasting pincers to name a few. Students are expected to complete one pair of shoes and begin work on a second pair, applying and expanding upon the techniques learned in the class.
    Apparel Design majors only
    Also offered as ID 2494 for ID majors

    JUNIOR TAILORING STUDIO

    Students focus on tailoring techniques and the design of tailored apparel. Drafting and classic tailoring techniques are taught and students explore shape and structure through experimentation on the form and creative pattern making. During this process, students use these technical skills to design and execute a jacket and companion piece.
    Estimated Material Cost: $400.00
    Major requirement, Apparel Design majors only
    Registration by Apparel Design department, course not available via web registration

    JUNIOR/DESIGN/DRAW/CAD

    During the spring semester, Junior students focus on form and proportion as they explore the structural possibilities inherent in the art of tailoring. Students design multiple collections, examining the properties of cohesiveness and conceptual expansion. Projects in men's wear and children's wear expose students to new directions for their creativity as they learn new computer techniques. Individual drawing skills are strengthened as students refine their portfolios.
    Estimated Material Cost: $200.00
    Major requirement, Apparel Design majors only
    Registration by Apparel Design department, course not available via web registration

    SENIOR APPAREL COLLECTION

    This senior level course focuses on the design of collections and the development of each student's unique interpretation of apparel design. The senior collections are a culmination of their skills and an exploration of their design vision. Originality, problem solving, and an organized design process are defined as essential elements of a successful degree project collection. Seniors refine and build their portfolios. Projects are aimed at enabling students to express a diverse but cohesive design vision. CAD instruction in Kaledo software gives students an additional creative tool.
    Estimated Material Cost: $1,000.00
    Major requirement, Apparel Design majors only
    Registration by Apparel Design department, course not available via web registration

    SOPHOMORE APPAREL STUDIO

    Building on basic techniques taught first semester, students proceed to more complex cuts for bodices, sleeves, skirts and pants through techniques of draping, drafting and construction. One finished garment is required.
    Estimated Material Cost: $125.00
    Major requirement, Apparel Design majors only
    Registration by Apparel Design department, course not available via web registration

    SOPHOMORE DESIGN/DRAW

    The design course builds on design process skills from the first semester through assignments that focus on research and its application, conceptual development, and team dynamics. Varied facets of apparel design are explored through lectures, museum research, classroom discussion, and creative exploration. The drawing component of the class focuses on print and texture rendering, drawing the fashion figure, layout design, and use of varied rendering media.
    Estimated Material Cost: $150.00
    Major requirement, Apparel Design majors only
    Registration by Apparel Design department, course not available via web registration