SUMMER ROBE

A BREEZY COVER UP FOR BRISK MORNINGS

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Design Brief: set time aside from grad school course work to do a fun, creative, sustainability-related project 

Solution: a hand sewn and block printed robe for easy transitions out of bed and into my morning routine

PROCESS

I've owned a fluffy cold weather robe for most of my life and have longed for a summer version, but could neither bring myself to splurge on the robes I really wanted nor settle for a more reasonable version. For this project, I decided it was time to make my own summer robe. 

Research – More of a window shopping journey, the research consisted of searching through existing options on the market, evaluating color, pattern, material, silhouette, etc. 

Development – I had natural cotton left over from another project that I wanted to use for the weight, texture, and breathability. To create the pattern, I traced my winter robe onto paper, and adjusted the lines based on measurements of other garments I own and light robe dimensions I found in my research.

Construction – This was the first garment I had ever sewed with sleeves, which proved to be the trickiest part. Normally I will watch tutorial videos and research all the possible ways to do something before starting, however, part of the exercise of this project was to simply create, unencumbered by an overload of information from a research rabbit hole, so I continued along feeling my way through each step. To finish the edges, I folded the raw edge in and sewed over top. I finished off the garment with a pocket for my phone.

Block Printing – I knew I wanted a floral design and ultimately decided a peony would be a playful shape in a block print. I carved out a rubber block and mixed up a custom pink to compliment the natural flower. I test printed on paper as I went along to better gauge what still needed to be cut out further and which shapes to refine to minimize bleeding. Knowing that the front edges would fall open, I printed on both sides of the fabric to create a continuous vertical pattern. 

Back

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Peony Drawing

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Side/Front

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Carving Away Negative Space

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Sleeve

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Mixing the Perfect Pink in Screen Print Ink

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Test Print on Paper

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Printing on the Robe

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Interior Seams

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Fit

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Final Summer Robe

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