Building a strong foundation

- - Draping, Pattern Making

The craftmanship of couture collections never ceases to amaze, and this season was no different. One look at Viktor and Rolf’s Cubist-inspired concoctions reminds us that there is but a blurry line that separates fashion and art. However, this season, we couldn’t help but notice the importance of foundation garments as the sheerest of the sheer frocks walked the runways.

Bodysuits and undergarments of all shapes and sizes provided the necessary base to showcase sheer dresses, delicate knits and embellishments worthy of the couture runways. From Christian Dior to Zuhair Murad, what was underneath was just as important as what was on top. And because we at the University of Fashion want our designers to be prepared inside to out, top to bottom and beginning to end in terms of creating your own collection, we decided to feature three new videos which will provide you with the skills you need to create your foundation pieces. Introducing One Piece Bodysuit-Swimsuit Sloper, Panty Sloper and Swimsuit Construction Tips.

First, learn how to drape a one-piece bodysuit-swimwear sloper in a 4-way cotton/lycra knit jersey. We will teach you will how to true the pattern and then how to transfer it to paper and then to oaktag. This sloper will be your foundation for creating many bodysuit and swimsuit designs and is the basis for our lesson on how to draft a panty.

Next, learn how to draft a full-brief panty sloper and pattern using the sloper that you created in our One-piece Bodysuit draping lesson. We will teach you about different types of panty shapes, including briefs, hipsters and thongs and how to create the crotch panel on a panty.

And finally, as a follow-up to our to our lesson on how to drape a one-piece swimsuit sloper this lesson will teach you some important swimsuit construction tips. You will learn about various types of liners and shelf bras as well as the different types of elastics that are specific to swimwear.

Whether you are creating a couture bodysuit, undergarments to support your designs or an entire swimwear line, our three newest videos will provide you with the technical support you need to get started. Take a moment to peruse the couture collections by clicking the link below and see how many applications you can find for the videos above, then let inspiration take hold as you take to your dress form.

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Kara Laricks is a regular contributor to the University of Fashion. She’s also a New York based women's wear and accessories designer. As the first winner of NBC's Fashion Star, Kara has designed collections for H&M, Macy's and Saks Fifth Avenue. Her masculine meets feminine line, Kara Laricks, debuted at New York Fashion Week in 2012 and her S/S 2013 collection sold exclusively at Saks Fifth Avenue. Kara's designs have been featured on the Today Show and HBO's True Blood as well as covered in Women's Wear Daily and on Kara holds Master's degrees in both Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Kansas and in Fashion Design from the Academy of Art in San Francisco. An educator turned designer, Kara is dedicated to supporting emerging designers and inspiring others to follow where dreams lead.