Inspired Fashion Design: Sketching Collections | Dmitry Sholokhov | Skillshare

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Inspired Fashion Design: Sketching Collections

teacher avatar Dmitry Sholokhov, Owner and Creative Director, Dmitry Sholokhov

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

11 Lessons (50m)
    • 1. Trailer

    • 2. Finding Inspiration

    • 3. Mood Board Development

    • 4. Fabricating Your Mood Board

    • 5. Sketching (Part 1)

    • 6. Sketching (Part 2)

    • 7. Sketching (Part 3)

    • 8. Combine Sketches with Moodboard

    • 9. Assign Fabrics to Garments

    • 10. BONUS! Final Pieces

    • 11. More Creative Classes on Skillshare

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About This Class

After winning Project Runway season 10 and building my own fashion label, I know first hand how powerful of a skill it is to create cohesive, innovative, and sought after collections. I always start a new garment or season by researching for inspiration first, and I look forward to sharing this process with you in order to elevate your own fashion endeavors.


What You'll Learn

In this class I will go through the various processes for developing a collection that I have learned by working in various fashion houses as well as designing my own line. 

  • Inspiration and Mood board development. How to find a start point and use it as a visual material to work from. Develop a color and material story to carry throughout the collection.
  • Fabrication. How to source and choose materials based on the inspiration, color story, and textures in the mood board.
  • Design ideas. How to sketch and develop silhouettes based on inspiration. 
  • Editing. How to tie together the colors, fabrics, and silhouettes with a strong, cohesive collection. 

What You'll Make

In this class you will make three fashion sketches that form the foundation of a collection. I will go over each step of my process so you can apply the lessons to your own designs. After taking this class you will enhance your design skills and will be able to make anything you are inspired by.

Meet Your Teacher

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Dmitry Sholokhov

Owner and Creative Director, Dmitry Sholokhov


I graduated from the Parsons School of Design, earning my BFA in Fashion Design. During my studies, I interned at Calvin Klein and J. Mendel. Immediately after graduation I accepted a full-time position at Italian house of Domenico Vacca, and soon became Design Director. Fashion professionals recognized my genuine talent, strong artistic presence and personal charm which resulted in offering me to create my own collection. That led to an even more challenging position at the Jones Apparel Group.

During my young yet experienced career as a fashion designer, I have won the GenART Award, Saga Furs Design Competition Award, Gap Design Competition Award, showcase at Debut, 24 Hour Cat Walk (lifetime), Project Runway season 10, amongst others.

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1. Trailer: Hi. My name is Dmitry Sholokhov. I am a winner of Project Runway Season 10, and I own my own brand Dmitry Sholokhov. The objective of this class is to create a mood board based on your inspiration and to create the capsule mini collection based on the mood board. You will learn how to choose fabrics, how to design from your mood board, how to get the ideas from your inspiration. I'll teach you how to tie old ideas and fabrics into one collection that is cohesive based on your inspiration. After taking this class, you will enhance your design skills, and you'll be able to design anything from your inspiration. 2. Finding Inspiration: Hi guys, welcome to class. So, inspiration, how do we find inspiration? For me it's always a pretty tough process. So, to get inspired you just have to, sometimes you just have to wait for inspiration, you have to watch movies, you have to maybe go to museums, you have to travel. For me, after each collection I get so drained, so I have to recharge my batteries and by recharging my batteries, I get inspired again. I am usually inspired by architecture, but you might be inspired by nature or painting, anything, so it's totally up to you. Whatever you feel emotional about, just take it and work from it. So, being in New York City and being surrounded by this amazing architecture, the diversity of architecture, that's usually my inspiration. Let's take, for example, Guggenheim Museum, it's such an iconic building, such an iconic architectural building and I'll show you the example of it, so I have some images of it. So, it's very graphic and very clean, very geometric. So, it's going to be very easy to work with, but at the same time it has so much information and clean information that I like and I like that it's very literal. So, much visual information and so many curves and so many details, but at the same time it's very clean. It's very important when you design from inspiration, it's important not to be too literal. For example, if you take a building, you don't want to design another building, so you want to design piece of cloth if you design a clothing because it has to be wearable. 3. Mood Board Development: First you start with the mood board. You have your inspiration, and then you have to create the mood board. Pretty much it's a collage. Collage of all your images that you get inspired. The textiles, it can be text it can be anything. Whatever inspires you, you put on your mood board. So, and in our case this is a Guggenheim Museum so I have some images of it, so let's start putting them. So, whatever images you've collected, and you can take your own images or you can do research online and print them out, it all depends on your inspiration. And for the mood board I use this boards that you can find at any art store. So, let's put it up and I love the exterior. The exterior that's I think it has so much information and so many ideas, and you can design so many collections from one building exterior and interior. So, let's put some, cool. So, and remember that you can be as creative as you want. So, in this case we're doing it really clean that it's easier to understand, but there are no rules to create a mood board. So, it's almost like you're creating a pattern, and again it's very personal for everyone. So, let's make it a bit more creative, a little bit more messy. Now we start to have that dimension that is really really important. Well now I'm getting inspired and I'm inspired by all this lines and curves and dimension. So, it has such an interesting details. So, and it can be transferred easily on the clothes but again remember when you start drawing the ideas, remember not to design another building because we're designing clothing and it has to be wearable. 4. Fabricating Your Mood Board: Fabrication is very important because if you want to transfer this ideas to the actual garment you have to make sure that your fabrics do what you want them to do. So, because it's very geometrical and very kind of structural looking, so we have to make sure our fabrics have a kind of stiffness about it. Your mood board, it's also a reflection of the color story because the Guggenheim as such iconic building and it's white. So, we will use white. I love black and white. I think it's timeless, it's always in style and it's very strong. So, okay. So, let's focus on black and white and then we can use maybe a pop up color just to bring everything to light. So, based on this, we will need white, we might use grays, we might use blacks and whatever popup color you want. It's totally up to you. So, I found this really cool fabric. It has a shine to it, it has a structure, it's very stiff but at the same time it's very, very flexible. So, I think it will be a perfect fabric for our garments. So, let's put it on a mood board list. We can use maybe black lavel as well. That is really strong and has this industrial look to it. So, then let's use some of the lighter fabrics. This is silk schmooze as well. It's another shade of white and I love this as well. Again, you don't have to use all these fabrics, you just put everything on a mood board. Pretty much it's information for you. Information and the choices that you have. Okay. So, then we have really cool this lacey fabrics. But again it looks very structurally. You see how our fabric story reflects our inspiration. It starts making sense. So, let's take this kind of dusty pink just to bring our colour story to live a little bit. Just add some color and again it's absolutely up to you what colors are you using. Of course the color has to reflect the inspiration, but then you shouldn't be literal. You can be a literal but I don't think it's interesting when you're too literal with you inspiration. So, let's take something light and transparent and we can play with hard and soft to add a dimension to it. Like this. Again, if you want to use streams or buttons or any kind of applications that you like you can put everything on the mood board. I think this is cool too. Then we have this electric blue. I think going to make our story's really good. Okay, and you can continue with the fabrics all the way, but it's important not to have too many fabrics. When you design collection, you always have to think about business side of it. You have to use one fabric as much as you can just to make the collection cohesive and then to save money. So, I think our mood board is pretty much done and then I think it's time to start sketching. Based on this mood board I don't know about you guys, but I'm very inspired and I have so many ideas from it. 5. Sketching (Part 1): Now, let's start to transfer our ideas into actual garment. But we have to create a garment, and to make it easier for us I used templates, and this is the template. You can find it anywhere online. You can just find it online and you can draw right on top of it, or you can make copies or you can redraw it and then it just easier for you to create a garment on on the croquet. So I have mine ready right here, so I have a couple of images in front of me of Guggenheim or you can have your mood board in front of you. Now case mood board is behind me, so I only have eyes right here so I have a couple of images. Let's do it, so and again before we start again, let's not design another building. Let's design something wearable, something clean, modern, not overdesigned. So look for the lines you like and for just elements you love. So I think we will start with the dress. Right, maybe something sleeveless. Let's do like, simple sleeveless shift dress. We start with it. Right, this is our silhouette, very clean, very sharp, knee length, elegant. Just like Guggenheim. Erase all the lines, croquet lines that I don't need. And then I would use all these elements, the stripes and cuts, into my garments, just and again using your personal aesthetic and point of view, wherever you feel just kind of roughly. Then we can create maybe like a cosset here. Again I'm using this ideas of stripes and I like the dimension that it has and we can play for example white and black. White or any other color of your choice to show the depth. So we're going to create in this cosset. Again, you do whatever pleasing your eye. That's totally up to you. The lines. Right, and then I like to use ink to make it cleaner. Then you can clearly see the ideas, and you see all this lines they reflect our inspiration, the Guggenheim but, they're not literal. So it's just ideas there but it's still very kind of freehanded. So and I always also like to add a scheme color just to separate your garment and the body. Here we go, and by looking at it I think it's going to be cool if we make these lines transparent, we can use like a tool or we can use a solid fabric with a different color and it's going to make a really cool contrast. So, and here we go, we have our first design. But we also have to think about the back of it, and this dress has to be practical and you have to think how she's going to put it on. So it has to have a closure. So we have to design the back of the dress. So we have our inspiration, we have our front and let's do the back. So for the back you can use the same croquet. So because it doesn't have a head, so it doesn't matter. So the back, make sure you think and you look on the front of your dress that you know it makes sense for the back of it. So all this lines that you have in front, you don't have to continue with them to the back, but I mean if you want to, but I think this dress is quite complicated. So I will take this waist lines, the cosset kind of lines and transferred to the back as well. So let's get rid of the all the lines we don't need. It's very confusing. And the guidelines, you need those lines on the croquet just to make sure that you know where is the waistline, where is the bass line, it's going to help you to make your garment balanced. So, let's put it in the same idea to the back and then let's put zipper. I love zippers. I think they're really cool and they give the edge to the garment and it's an easy access. So, let's make this. So we have our zipper right here, so we might need darts as well here. Then we have to continue this line to the back. I would. It's almost like a mirror reflection of the same. All right and then you do the same inking, but it's not necessary but for me I love it because especially when you take it to the person who's actually going to make it, it makes it easier for them to understand. You can also color in your garment. But because our garment is white, so that is already white. But again to add dimension we can take kind of green marker and add some shadows to it. So we have our first garment, and it's pretty literal. I wouldn't call it very literal, but it definitely reflects the Guggenheim. If you look here, look how cool it is, and based on this, lets design another dress. 6. Sketching (Part 2): So, this is the start point for us. So, we designed the first garment based on our inspiration. Now, we can continue designing and creating a collection. Now, it's easier for us because we have the first garment, and we can design from this garment. We have so many ideas just based on this garment. The silhouette. Let's keep the same silhouettes. Right? We come, new links. Let's add little sleeve maybe to it, to have a diversity. So, let's get rid of them, all the lines that we don't need. Again, look at your inspiration, look at your first garment, and using the same elements and ideas, create something new. So, let's do something like this, a cool simple line. Let's do this part transparent, like we have all these lines transparent. So, we might need dots here. We need them to push a little. So, let's use exposed dots to reflect the detail on the bust. I love inking, that it makes it really, really clean and sharp. Especially, if you're planning this garment to be made, and if you're not making it yourself, it has to be very clean, to make sure that the person who's going to make it understands the construction of it. Let's add the skin tone to it. In this part, we have it transparent. So, you can see through it a little bit. So, we can use either chiffon or tulle. I love this one. Cab you give some texture to it. All right. I think we have our next dress. So, you see, you can still say that this dress is from the same collection. It has the same elements, the same silhouette, but at the same time, it's different. Now, we have to create the baccalaureate. Simplicity is the key, but not necessarily for everyone. I like to be simple, but it's very personal for everyone. Some people love simplicity, some people love to be overwhelmingly dressed up. So, it's very personal, and especially because our inspiration is such a graphic, such a clean and iconic building, and I think it's important that your garment reflects that clean, sharp image. Again, we have our silhouette. Let's get rid of the lines that we don't need, otherwise it gets confusing. I had this class before I became a professional designer, because I think that would be so great to see someone like me designing. So, let's open the back a little bit just to make it sexy. See we have all this geometrical shapes here, and we can give her like a diamond shape open back. We can put maybe a little button here, and then we can still give a zipper here. We need the dots, and let's make the simple dots. Let's not do the exposed one, because we already have so much going on in the back. So, let's ink it. Again, I feel like these type of shift dresses, they are always in style, they're always modern. I think it's timeless and also they're ageless. A woman in her 40s can wear it, the 50s, and all, a girl in her 20s can wear it, and they would look absolutely amazing. So, we would need a seam here, and the dots. So, let's put the scheme color in to separate our garment. So, this is our open back. This is our shoulder. So, this part is transparent. So, we can use tulle, or we can use chiffon, or organza. There's some stitches here, show the zipper. Again, you guys can do any closures you want, but make sure that when you design, think about how you, or your customer, or the girl who's going to wear this dress, how she's going to get out of it, or get in. It's very important, don't forget. If you are not sure where to do the closure, go and see your favorite dress, or dresses, or go to the store and look at the garments. It also helps to actually look at actual garment to understand the construction better, and you can get ideas for your construction, and for your designs as well. So, now, we have the front and the back of our new dress. Let's put back and front. It's important to have separates. Separate skirts, jackets, blouses, then your customer can mix and match, because dresses are amazing, but you don't wear dresses every day. So, let's design something else. Let's zoom a skirt. 7. Sketching (Part 3): So, let's do some separates. What we're going to do. Let's do the skirt and a vest. So again, look at your inspiration. Look on the garments that you already did, and using the same elements, the same ideas, and the same kind of structural elements, let's make a skirt. So again, I would stay in the same kind of silhouette. So, knee lengths, let's give it a nice kind of shape. Let's get rid of them. The lines we don't need. So, we have a nice basic pencil skirts. But who needs a nice basic pencil skirts? I mean everybody needs it but nobody wants it. So, let's make something exciting. I love the ideas of all these piecing together, the course outlines. So, let's transfer it to the skirt. These cool lines. I am using the same kind of ideas and elements from the first dress we did, and taking the corset ideas and moving them to the hip area. So let's separate it here to make it. We kind of have this cool skirt made out of many pieces. So, let's ink it in. We'll give the garment dimension. Okay. Again, it's totally up to you, and the materials you use, and you can draw with colors, you can draw with anything you'd like. All right. So, let's separate the skin. All right. We have our cool skirt. How it works together with our dress. Right. So, and what she's going to wear with this skirt? The skirt is pretty intense. It's very complicated looking. So, I think if we design a vest, or jacket, let's do a vest. It has to be very simple, very clean but still, let's keep that kind of maybe sharp angles, big sharp lapel. So, let's give a nice big lapel to your vest. All right. Let's do this drawn. Shoulder, it's very modern looking. Nice angles. Let's add our skirt here as well. Let's ink it. Inking, it's the easiest part. You already have your design, and you just pretty much making it prettier. So we have kind of cool strong looking vest to go with our skirt. You have to make sure that you're being true to yourself, and you're not trying to copy anyone. Just be yourself and just design the way you see it, the way you love it, and don't copy me. Kidding. I mean, we still get inspired by other designers, and we get the ideas from other designers. But then, using your own kind of judgment and your own point of view, you can take a garment, and you can redesign. But you can definitely learn from others. Like you're learning from me right now, and I still learn from other people as well, and from every collection you design, you learn something new. There's a lot of times, your ideas that you put on paper, sometimes they don't really work quite well as you think, and then you have to basically improvise and find solutions and change things. But you can only find this out when you actually make the garment, and we're going to make it. Okay, let's add some shadows to give us some dimension to your design. All right. So, now, we have our skirt and our jacket. So, and as you can see, all of our garments, outfits, they have the same elements. So, that's what makes it a collection. Same elements, same silhouettes, same construction, and you can expand that to a much bigger collection. You can expand it to 10, 15, 20, 30 looks. Just take an idea of the idea of the idea because now from this, from our last garment, you can expand to, you can make a code dress based on this jacket, or you can make another dress, or you can make a blouse based on the skirt, and based on the same elements. So, it can be endless, but who has time. 8. Combine Sketches with Moodboard: Okay. So, let's put our sketches on our moodboard to see how we did. Let's cut them, maybe, out a little bit with this extra paper. Let's put our sketches, right on our moodboard and we'll see how they work together. I'm going to put only the front, frontal sketches. So, I'm going to put the back. Okay. Nice and clean. So now, we have our ideas on a moodboard. Again, this idea you can expand and you can create as many garments as you'd like. So, if you want to do a full collections, so usually it's 15-30 pieces. We did a small capsule collection, but it has so much information that it can be expanded easily. Look how these elements on our garments, how they reflect our inspiration in the construction and in the overall look. Now we can clearly see how our garments and our looks reflect the inspiration, or vice versa, how the inspiration reflects our garments. It's very important for your collection to be cohesive. In order to be cohesive, your collection has to have same silhouette, has to have similar elements, construction elements, fabrications. Now, it's time to decide which fabric we're going to use for which garment. 9. Assign Fabrics to Garments: Let's assign the Fabrics to our Garments. Again, it's absolutely up to you, but you have to think about if the specific fabric you choose if it will work for the garments. So, if you have a jacket for example, you need something stiffer to hold the structure. I think this white fabric, it's a blend of wool and something synthetic, but it's a great fabric, great weight, and it'll work perfectly for our jacket. So, the shape and the color will reflect our inspiration. And the skirt, I would use black jersey, combined with black twill or black chiffon to piece all these pieces. So, it'll be black and white look and I think for these three looks, we'll stay in a black and white color story, just to kind make it graphic, simple, cool, and timeless. For this look, I would use white or cream jersey, something like this that we have here and maybe combine it with the black twill or chiffon to piece all this fabrics together or it's up to you for the trim you can use a [inaudible] pop color to kind of show the dimension. The last dress, we can use again the black jersey combining with the black twill or black chiffon. So, they'll be very black-and-white cool capsule collection. 10. BONUS! Final Pieces: So, we are almost done. We have created our capsule collection based on our inspiration and I have a surprise for you. You know that I did project runway and we had to create our garments, our final product literally in five minutes. So, I did the same thing for you and I just created all of these three loops, just for you guys. Here's our first dress. The next one is our second dress that we designed. Our final look, a vest and a skirt. Here it is. So, this is it for this class. Thank you very much for joining me and I hope you learned a lot. Now, go and design some dresses. 11. More Creative Classes on Skillshare: