When I went round town for the shop report I realised that I didn't feel very inspired by the shapes I was seeing, and and it made me rethink my idea of just doing womenswear collections for high end and high street. I really want to use this project to create something different and exciting, alongside being able to show that I can do commercial design. I know that I want to do scarf designs again as that has been successful in the past, but I also want to branch out, so I have decided to widen this into fashion accessories, but I will also stick with doing one high end womenswear collection for variety. After quite some thought I realised that handbag linings will be the perfect vehicle for my busier prints, as I can create something quite simplistic on the outside that reveals a wealth of treasure once you open it.
The things that I found most interesting when researching clothing shapes was the use of panelling and contrasting textures - lots of sheer sections in unexpected places. There was also lots of unusual hemlines that were longer at the front or back. I think it is these subtle details that rather than an in-your-face print that makes something high end stand out, so I will make sure to incorporate some of these elements in my designs.
When it came to handbag research however I was even more uninspired by what is on the market, which seems to be flooded with basic tote shapes and boxy designs, excluding the odd unusual shaping from Alexander McQueen and Stella McCartney. I chose instead to focus on vintage handbag shapes, which lead me to look at some really interesting history books where I discovered lots of interesting things about the origins of handbag shapes which will feed back into my design work. As I am planning on designing a simple exterior to contrast my busy linings, I think I will need to try sourcing some leathers and suedes to experiment with.