Drawing Design Details: Side Pleats, Ruffle Pleats and Smocking

Saint Laurent, Rodarte and Christopher Kane are just a few design houses that make good use of the design details (as seen above) we are featuring this week in our newest Fashion Art videos.  In our latest round of illustration videos with Roberto Calasanz, we show you how to map and shade Side Pleats, Ruffle Pleats and Smocking.  Coincidentally, we found all three of these design details in Karen Walker’s 2015 Resort collection.  The following examples illustrate how learning Fashion Art skills with the University of Fashion’s videos can be translated into unique designs.

After mastering our Side Pleats video, use what you know to add side pleats to culottes, shorts, pants or skirts as shown in Karen Walker’s latest collection above.

Ruffle Pleats are a versatile design detail – for a masculine twist, use them as the bib on a tuxedo style shirt, blouse or dress.  If your design leans toward the feminine, using ruffle pleats at the neck, yoke and sleeves gives a Victorian era feel.

Whether used as a design detail or to create shape in a garment, smocking is a design detail worth adding to your illustration repertoire.  Karen Walker uses smocking at the neck, on the sleeve and even as a small panel just underneath the bust on her notch collar blouse in her 2015 Resort collection.  Try your hand at illustrating our newest design details as well a variety of others in the U of F’s Fashion Art section.  As always, we love to see what you are designing and creating using the University of Fashion’s video library. Send us your work – we love to feature our talented students!

*Runway images from Style.com

Sign-up for our newsletter

Join our newsletter to receive updates on future blog posts, special deals, and new lessons. Also visit the main webpage to check out all of our video lessons.

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 Style.com. 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.