Behind the Scenes: Fall/Winter 2017
by Emily DeLong
16 October 2017
Here is a peek inside what the Margu studio has looked like during these past few months of sketching, sourcing, drafting, cutting, and sewing.
FW17 was certainly our most technically complex collection to date (so many pleats and darts and buttons!), and as such, the production process took quite some time. Fortunately, I got a lot of pictures of almost every step in the process, from my original sketches to our photoshoot that took place the weekend before last.
Some early, some late sketches of the nine styles in our FW17 collection. It's interesting to see how some of the design elements changed between then and now — pleats added, darts removed, seamlines altered, etc. etc., in addition to lots of tiny little adjustments that wouldn't be visible in sketches. After lots of tinkering, I finally got the collection where I want it to be (or at least close to it!).
This is the first time I remembered to get (albeit blurry) shots of the dyeing process. That's my yellow-gloved hand reaching in to stir while dyeing our Eggplant Denim fabric with fiber-reactive dyes.
Prewashing and drying fabrics beforehand is no joke — especially when you have to find a way to air-dry multiple yards of fabric on end!
Drafting patterns for each collection is one of my favorite parts! I love all the measurements and geometry involved.
Once I finish a pattern in a sample size, I'll sew up a prototype and then make adjustments to the pattern. (You can see here that I had several adjustments to make for the Odette Top.) After that, I'll make another sample to make sure everything is A-OK, and then I'll work on grading the pattern from size 4 to sizes 00-16.
Laying out pattern pieces onto the fabric and cutting them out is like one huge puzzle — so much fun! I try to lay the pieces out so that the smallest possible amount of fabric is wasted — and then I'll take the biggest scraps and make bias tape out of them.
I'm usually working on several garments at once, so remaining organized and keeping all the pieces straight is a big priority!
This collection has a lot of pleats and darts in it, so I spent a lot of time marking stitching lines with chalk onto fabric.
Some behind-the-scenes images of making bias tape out of scrap fabrics from the cutting process. We use bias tape for everything from binding necklines and armholes to finishing the insides of seams to making the little buttonhole loops on our tops and dresses.
So many little pieces of fabric to sew together!
I really went all out this time on the fun bias-bound trims. I think my favorite combination is the Jardin Voile trim on our Holly Berry Silk Noil fabric!
This is a photo of me mocking up the sleeves on the Darla Dress in Holly Berry Silk Noil before I actually sewed them on. It took a few tries to get the right amount of volume in the sleeves that I wanted.
Sewing every button by hand. Time consuming, yes, but I can assure you that all our buttons are attached for good!
Photography time! By this time, I was SO relieved to be finished sewing up FW17 samples. It was so nice to have a break from sewing for a few days!
Editing photos takes a lot of time, but it's so fun to see the clothes on our models!
Thanks for reading! You can take a look at our FW17 collection here.