Calandra Cooper

From toile to finish

Calandra Cooper
From toile to finish
HouseofArt.jpg

National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne
Presented through The Art Foundation of Victoria by the Shmith Family, Fellow, 1993
© Estate of Athol Shmith

National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne
Presented through The Art Foundation of Victoria by the Shmith Family, Fellow, 1993
© Estate of Athol Shmith

My preferred working method (for developing a design (that’s from a sketch or direct application)) is working out ideas directly in muslin fabric and draping directly on a form; making a toile. So that the silhouette, the line and the proportion may be studied, experimented with and perfected.

And then, just like in a couture fashion house, after careful consideration of texture and color combination, the toile (muslin mockup) is ready for truing and is made up into an oaktag pattern (in a house by a pattern maker), then cut (in a house by a cutter) in fashion fabric for later construction and finishing (in a house by seamstresses and petit mains).

Draping permits a designer to see the design in its entirety from all sides; enabling the designer to use the best possible information about the design by reviewing it: suggestions on the fall, the character of line, of fold, or of areas of the fabric itself, as well as seeing immediately if the idea one has in mind is at all possible.