Take a look at the Spring 2020 Women’s Global Runway trends

Spring 2020 collections embraced joy through optimistic bright colors that were met with voluminous silhouettes like the maxi dress. This season many brands moved away from athleisure references, opting instead for casual summer staples. Bermuda shorts were everywhere as a seasonal essential. Good vibes were in the air with a Midsommar theme, featuring eyelet, lace and whimsical florals. Ultralight transparent fabrics and natural materials like raffia were highlighted. Prints took on familiar, yet highly commercial motfis, from polka dots and tropicals to the new animal print du jour — zebra — while cutouts spoke to new erogenous zones.  From our friends at Fashion Snoops.

NEW URBAN
New Urban is a fresh take on minimal utility, which has been strong for the past few seasons and lands at one of the most prevalent themes of Spring 2020. Details such as utility pockets and metal hardware elevate items, which have a decidedly casual look even though tailoring is also factored in. New soft brights bring excitement to an otherwise neutral palette. Key items include jumpsuits, cargo pants and structured blazers.  To make this at home, try PFI patterns Roxy Raglan jacket and Avril pants; Casual Jackets + Jeans & Pants classes.

 

MIDSOMMAR
Midsommar is packed full of whimsical, summer fun. Set to a cheery color palette, materials like eyelet stand out on flowing maxi dresses. Floral prints, stripes and lace trim are just as relevant as casual spring sweater dresses. All – white looks make an entrance. To make this at home, try PFI patterns Wrap Dolman top and Boho pants; Jeans & Pants + Classic Shirts classes.

 

80s
The 80s powers forward. Spring 2020 collections go BIG on shape, with strong tailored shoulders and exaggerated puff sleeves. Other highlights include bright colors, the return of polka dots, minis, ruffles and bubble hems. To make this at home, try PFI pattern Moto jacket; Casual Jackets class.

 

OPTIMISTIC BRIGHTS
The notion of joy was featured across all fashion weeks with fun, bold and inherently optimistic colors, which also extended to neons. Bright primary hues include Sunny Yellow, Carrot Orange, Scarlet Red and Lively Green. To make this at home, try PFI pattern Lola dress; Dresses class.

 

GO GREEN
One of the most powerful fashion colors to emerge for Spring 2020 is green. Both lively bright hues and dramatic jade are featured. To make this at home, try PFI pattern Isabella dress; Dresses class.

 

SHORT STORY
Shorts make a huge impact in Spring 2020 collections. High waist bermudas are key, while short suits bring a casual sense to tailoring. To make this at home, try PFI pattern Marianne rompers; Jumpsuits & Overalls class.

 

MAXI
Couture-like volume was a big takeaway for Spring 2020. One of the most commercial ways to apply it is through sweeping maxi dresses. Bold color and print applications stand out. To make this at home, try PFI pattern Julia dress; Knits class.

 

ZEBRA
Animal prints remain strong throughout Spring 2020 collections, with zebra as the most forward direction. To make this at home, try PFI pattern Warhol Trench Coat; Jacket class.

 

 

POLKA DOTS
With a nod to the 80s, polka dots are a favorite in Spring collections. Mini and oversized scales are featured on a variety of items. To make this at home, try PFI pattern Donna dress; Couture Dress class

 

TROPICAL
The J.Lo jungle dress moment defined Spring 2020, with a variety of vacation-ready lush tropical patterns. To make this at home, try PFI pattern Morgan Wrap dress; Dresses class

 

ULTRALIGHT TRANSPARENCY
From gauzy netting to super fine macrame, transperancy is a key material focus. A number of European designers explored these aerated materials, bringing a sporty perspective to vacation-ready fits with embroidered overlays or fringe effects. To make this at home, try PFI pattern Bianca dress; Couture Dress class.

 

NATURE’S DESIGN
From basket woven raffia to macrame filaments, natural materials ruled runways. Designers opted for flexible fronds that were easily manipulated into full looks or intricate detailing.  From Liza Rietz’ Innovative Design class, Dieter Vlasich’s straw dress.

 

CUTOUTS
Cutouts remain as one of the most popular design details, with a focus on new placements. Cutout sides and shoulders are highlighted, while new circular cutouts are a forward direction. To make this at home, try PFI pattern Baby Jane top & tunic; Knits class.

 

Next up:  Trends in sustainability

Nike, W+K, Oregonian, Project Runway help PFI boost business classes

Portland deserves to be a center for the apparel industry.

“Our city is known nationwide for its fashion,” says Sharon Blair, director for Portland Fashion Institute.  “We want our apparel designers to continue that image, to express themselves and have fun. But we also want them to make money and stay in business.”

“It’s no fun to go broke.”

To meet that challenge, PFI today announced the launch of a business class series for apparel start-ups.  All are taught by industry experts from top companies such as Nike and Wieden + Kennedy. The series leads with talks from the Oregonian’s former fashion editor Vivian McInerny and famed local designer and Project Runwaywinner Michelle Lesniak.

“We have an exciting group of speakers willing to share what they know and help others succeed, Blair says”

Classes take place Saturdays, 10 am-1 pm starting September 14.  The series of 11 classes costs $680 or $65/class.   This business series takes place only in Fall.

“No where else can you get this caliber of instruction for such an accessible price,” Blair says.  “Our hashtag is #schoolwithoutdebt.”

Blair adds that the classes are for everybody.  “Half our students are here for one or two classes.  The rest are here for a career.  These classes are useful whether you start your own business or want work for one of Portland’s 25 apparel manufacturers.”

The list of classes Includes:

— September 14.  Start an Apparel Business with McInerny and Blair.

— September 21. Fashion Forecasting with Lesniak.

— September 28.  PR Secrets.  Kim Bedwell, FLM Harvest Public Relations sr vice-president

— October 5.  Excel for Apparel Professionals, Dana Ditto, Nike materials mgr

— October 12.  Costing & Pricing. Dana Ditto, Nike

— October 19.  Sourcing 101. Dana Ditto, Nike

— October 26.  Contracting Basics. Owen Schmidt, contracts attorney

— November 2. Working with Production. Jason Calderon, West Daily designer & S Group sr product developer

— November 9.  Working with Boutiques & Buyers.  Celeste Sipes, Thunderpants USA owner and former owner of Radish Underground boutique

— November 16.  Truth about Trade Shows.  Jason Calderon, West Daily & S Group

— November 23.  Social Media Marketing. Rebecca Russell, Wieden + Kennedy social media strategist

PFI places 100 percent of its career school graduates in the apparel industry with jobs at companies such as Adidas, Nike, Columbia Sportswear, Bridge & Burn and Kroger Corp.

PFI is an Oregon licensed fashion design school that aims to be the “best education center for apparel in the United States.”  It celebrates its 10th anniversary in 2020.

Sewing Tip: SHORTEN A LONG COIL ZIPPER

1 – Place zipper stop at bottom of opening so excess is at top. Sew zipper.

2 – Unzip zipper below waistline.


3 & 4 – Sew forward and back through teeth on each side of zipper (don’t worry; this won’t hurt your needle).

5 – Make sure your new “stop” actually stops zipper.

6 & 7 – Cut excess zipper tape

 

Want more sewing tips? Sign up for Apparel Construction with Lisa.  Choose either the morning or evening class.  Next classes start in September.  Click here!

Sewing Tip: MAKE EVEN RUNNING STITCHES

Use a wooden coffee stir stick as a guide to make even stitches and even spaces between stitches.

If needed, chalk the sew line & on either side of the stir stick.

Pull the thread taut to show the beauty of your straight line of even stitches.

Want more sewing tips? Sign up for Beginning Sewing with Anne, Britta or Suzi.  Or Apparel Construction with Lisa.  Choose the class that’s right for you.  Next classes start in September.  See you there!

12 hems in a hurry

Is it Summer? Do you want to finish that hem so you can wear that dress? Check out these 12 hems in a hurry for any garment. Then sign up for a sewing class so you can perfect that technique for your own clothes.

Hems are one of your final touches – whether on the sleeve or body of the garment.  They are also one of the things you hurry through so you can wear the garment.  Why leave hem choice to chance? After spending so much time cutting and sewing, why ruin a garment by choosing the wrong one?

When in doubt, I pull down my brief dictionary of hem finishes.  These are samples I’ve sewn to show me how a hem will look and behave on a variety of fabrics.

For you, I’ve chosen 12 of the most reliable.  I’ll show you how to make them and how to choose the right one for your garment.

THREE BY MACHINE:  Use these on straight or slightly curved hems for woven fabrics when you don’t mind seeing a stitch line – or can turn it into a design element

  • Double turn. Allow for turn of cloth; e.g., hem allowance for shirts = ½” while hem allowance for jeans = 1¼”.  Press up full hem allowance then tuck under the raw edge.  This creates a straighter hem.  Tip for shirts:  Spray hem with starch and let dry before pressing.
  • Press up a ¼” hem to the right side.  Cover with lace or ribbon, ¼” or wider.  Three-step zigzag (aka “elastic stitch”) in place.
  • This is best on transparent fabrics as an alternative to the rolled hem. Run a straight stitch 1/8” parallel into the hem allowance. For example, if your hem allowance is 1” away from the raw edge, sew your stitch at 7/8” away from the raw edge.

Fold on the stitch line to the wrong side of the garment and edgestitch.  Use appliqué scissors to trim to the edgestitching as closely and evenly as possible.  Fold the edge to the wrong side again.  With the wrong side up, stitch on top of the first stitching. Overlap your beginning stitches with your ending stitches.  Do not backstitch.

FYI:  There’s a fourth machine hem:  The blindhem.  This is a popular finish for pants.  But most blindhem feet have a plastic gauge that gives an uneven stitch.  Here’s how to conquer your blindhem woes.

Press up the hem allowance then press under the raw edge by ¼”. Press the garment back exposing the hem an even 1/8”.  Use a metal edgestitch foot.  Set a stitch width of 3.5 and length of 2.5.  By pressing and using a metal foot, you’ll keep the stitches even.

Why are blindhems on ready-to-wear pants so clean? Industrial machines stitch hems in the flat – no folding needed.  The hem edge is serged with a narrow stitch or covered with hem tape.  The hem is pressed up and placed on the machine bed, hem side up.  A curved needle grabs a small bite of both the garment then the hem.  Bite depth and stitch length change to match the thickness of fabric.  Manufacturers routinely use invisible polyester monofilament thread.

THREE BY SERGER.  Use these on wovens or knits when you want the stitch line to be part of the look of the garment.

  • Also called an overedge, it is used for wovens.  It’s particularly attractive on wools.  Cut corners into curves.  Set up your machine for 2-thread serging.  Don’t have 2-thread?  Use 3-thread and run Pearl Crown Rayon in the upper looper.  This is an easy hem for a fleece blanket for a football game or baby shower.
  • Also called a serger rolled edge.  Remember to “feed the knife.”  When merrowing soft transparent fabrics such as chiffon, set the machine for the widest rolled edge possible, disengage the knife and guide the fabric’s raw edge to the inside edge of the presser foot.  On knits, change the differential feed.  Use higher numbers to keep the edge flat.  Use lower numbers to make a lettuce edge.
  • Standard finish for a knit hems.  Press up ½” or 1” hem.  Stabilize with a ¼”-wide strip of fusible web.  Coverstitch from the right side with two needles.  Don’t have a serger?  Use a 3.0 mm stretch twin needle on your sewing machine.

THREE BY HAND – Use these stitches on the straight hems of finer garments when you absolutely do not want see a stitch line. For all, press up the hem allowance 1¼”. Press under the raw hem edge ¼”. Use a single thread in a size 8 or 10 Sharps needle.

  • Work from left to right (or right to left if you are left-handed!). Catch a small stitch on the top of the hem allowance then pick a small bite of the garment about ½” to the right.  Your stitches will create a series of “Xs”.
  • Work from right to left as above. Stitch inside the fold, out of sight, for about ½”.  Come out to catch a small bite from the garment.  Go back into the same hole in the fold.  Continue.
  • Position the hem vertically. Pick up a small bite on the hem allowance then pick a small bite of the garment about 1/2” up.  Repeat, alternating between the hem and the garment to create a series of diagonal lines.

 

THREE ON THE BIAS – Use these finishes on curved hems that won’t turn up without puckering.

  • Use on wovens.  Cut or buy 2″-wide bias strips of tightly woven but thin fabric such as cotton broadcloth.  Piece them together to match the length of your hem length plus 2”.

Machine stitch the strip to the bottom edge of the garment. Leave the first 1” of the strip unstitched.  Start sewing ½” from a side seam.  Finish by matching the beginning and ending of the strip so it is the same length as the bottom edge.  Place right sides together matching raw edges.  Stitch and trim excess.  For a better look, place right sides together with one end of the strip at a 90°angle.  Stitch on the bias.  Finish sewing the strip to the bottom edge.

Press seam allowances toward the facing. Understitch. Press the facing inside with 1/8” of fashion fabric showing beyond the bias strip at the hem edge.

Press the raw upper edge of the facing under by ½”. Attach the facing to the garment with a loose row of hand stitches.

  • Use on knits.  Press under ½”.  Insert a ¼”-wide strip of fusible web under the raw hem edge.  Fuse.  TIP: To copy the look of ready to wear, finish from the right side with a zigzag stitch, 1.5 stitch length, 1.5 stitch width.
  • Use this on heavier fabrics.  For wovens, use woven bias strips.  For knits, use crossgrain strips of knit.

For wovens, cut strips 1-3/4” wide by the length of the hem.  Press under one long edge 3/8”.  Place the right side of the unpressed edge of the bias strip against the wrong side of the fabric, raw edges together.  Stitch a 3/8”-wide seam allowance.  Press the seam allowances toward the strip.  Don’t “unpress” your previous pressing!

Wrap the strip around the raw edge of the fabric to the right side of the fabric.  Line up the previously pressed edge of the strip so matches the stitch line.  Edgestitch the bias strip from the right side.

For knits, cut strips 2” wide by the length of the hem. Place to the garment, right sides together.  Sew a ½” seam allowance.  Wrap the binding over the seam allowance to the wrong side.  On the right side, stitch in the ditch or edgestitch the fold or zigzag across the fold.  Trim excess binding close to stitching line on wrong side.

Want more?  Try our Beginning Sewing, Apparel Construction or Splendid Mending classes.  Like our Instagram page for sewing tips.

———

Sharon Blair owns and directs Portland Fashion Institute in northeast Portland. PFI’s 24 instructors work in the apparel industry and teach classes from sewing to design to patternmaking to business.  Look for PFI’s line of patterns and ready-to-wear at PFI_Supply and Fade to Light Fashion Show.

Pattern Tip: ADD SEAM ALLOWANCE TO A PATTERN

 


1 – Weight pattern to a clean piece of paper.

2 – Join two pencils with a rubber band.

3 – Trace around pattern.

4 – Remove weights & pattern.

5 – Reveal tracing.

Want more?  Sign up for Patternmaking with Anne.  We have four levels of patternmaking; choose the one that’s right for you.  Next class starts September 9.  Click here!

Sewing Tip: Quick & Easy Gathering

At PFI, we aim to make your sewing easy and professional.   Here is the latest in our series of sewing tips everyone should know.  Just one of the many we share in our classes.  Enjoy!

 

1 – Put heavy cord centered under machine foot. 

2 – Zigzag over cord (SL 3.0, SW 3.0). 

3 – Tie off one end.

4 – Pull cord to gather.