My Son, the Fashion Designer

by Erin on November 12, 2008

ebay item 8305987417

My son did this sketch for me a couple of months ago and I have been meaning to post it for ages. It came about because I was curled up on the couch reading Vogue while he was organizing Pokemon cards or some such fourth-grade activity, and some picture caught his eye. Embarrassed at being caught being INTERESTED in something, he shrugged off the picture as "that girly stuff" … until I told him that (whatever it was, I can't remember) cost $1200. (It was in Vogue, remember?)

After his incredulous "REALLY?" we had a little talk about fashion designers, and how a lot of them were men … at which point he sat down and drew the above picture. I think he has a lot of promise as a fashion designer. First of all, he totally caught the Goth-Loli zeitgeist thing that's going on; for another he's very self-critical (he wrote the "D+" on the picture himself when he was done). He even named the look ("Moon Heart").

I also think he has a great eye for merchandising and diffusion/bridge lines — sure, the dress is $800, but the stockings (which make the look, you have to admit) are only $20. Affordable luxury! Not to mention the well-thought-out hair and makeup, right down to the dramatic lipstick and the heart and moon patches on the face …

The last cool thing is that he drew penny loafers. Since I wear penny loafers ALL THE TIME, I loved that part best of all. When he actually is a famous fashion designer (unlikely, as he mostly wants to be either a scientist or a book illustrator, or, failing that, Indiana Jones) I will take full credit for being his muse and inspiration. (He designed the dress for someone my height, as you can see.)

Look for him on Project Runway in about … 2018.

{ 43 comments… read them below or add one }

Evelyn November 12, 2008 at 10:15 am

Omigosh! That is so cute I can’t stand it!

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Miss Amelina November 12, 2008 at 10:20 am

Kids are so freakin’ awesome. LOVE IT.

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Marjie November 12, 2008 at 10:24 am

This is adorable! I love his details. And if he wants to be Indiana Jones, well, it’s better than my second son, who at 9 wanted to be a Ninja Turtle. (I’m not entirely certain that son is over it yet at age 23.)

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scmtngirl November 12, 2008 at 10:34 am

I like how he raised the prices after recognizing his own talent. ;)

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Allison November 12, 2008 at 10:37 am

Ain’t nothing wrong with Indiana Jones, except that his archaeological technique is suspect … (says the grad student in Classical Archaeology). If it were me, I’d go for scientist, with a very cool hat.

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Lydia November 12, 2008 at 10:40 am

This is the best thing ever. My friends have the most amazing kids in the world. Yay for great kids and fab parents!

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Shauna November 12, 2008 at 10:47 am

The shoulder detail, the high neckline, the 20 inch waist, it’s all wonderful. :)That’s so cute. Thanks for sharing!

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La BellaDonna November 12, 2008 at 10:49 am

Erin, if you want to totally blow your son away – make the dress.You absolutely could. Why not? It’s clearer than at least 50% of the high-fashion sketches designers and/or their assistants produced. It’s easily as clear as anything Mary Quant ever drew. It’s got armhole princess seams with either contrasting piping or extra inset panels; it has a slightly dropped waist, with a carefully detailed (probably detachable) bow; the waistline detailing, together with the bow, makes it look like a belt. It has the lace detailing at collar and epaulette/shoulder seams, and what look like long sleeves.It has a wide lace band at the hem, but, most importantly, it has very carefully delineated hearts and crescent moons appliques, very likely – on the bodice and at the hem. You have tons of basic patterns; if you can (casually) find out what colours he thinks it would be made in, you can sneakily make it and knock his socks off!

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Eirlys November 12, 2008 at 10:51 am

What promise! And, La Belladonna, I think you’ve got yourself a commission!

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La BellaDonna November 12, 2008 at 10:52 am

Strongerthanourfear, oh, I think he’s more sensible than that. He has very carefully marked how long the dress is from waist to hem – 20 inches. You may want to lengthen that a bit if you make it, Erin – just explain that the length that they show on the runways – 20 inches long – is not the same as the length shipped to the stores. The one version is for publicity, the other is what actually sells to a more conservative public.

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Yas November 12, 2008 at 11:32 am

As a member of the Chicago Gothic Lolita community, I may have to make the dress. If I do, I’ll be sure to send pictures ^^. Did he give any indication as to what color it ought to be?

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Theresa November 12, 2008 at 12:03 pm

I would totally wear that dress! My friend’s son really does want to be a designer. I try to encourage him at every opportunity.

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3KillerBs November 12, 2008 at 12:10 pm

That is really cute. And it looks perfectly wearable too.Someone really should make it up.

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Cookie November 12, 2008 at 12:20 pm

The shoulders are innovative! I agree that you MUST make this dress! I wonder what event you could shoot for? It has kind of a “dolly” effect…so maybe a toy convention?

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quinn November 12, 2008 at 12:59 pm

Hmmm. 12,000$ item in Vogue….possibly a shoe?

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Gray November 12, 2008 at 1:11 pm

Very cute. He sounds just like my 20-something male flatmate, ‘just girly stuff’ indeed…As an avid fan of both your blog, and the Japanese fashion of Lolita (we don’t really like the term ‘Loli-Goth’ – it conjures up images of skankily-clad teenage mall-goths) I should point out that the Wikipedia article is rubbish, and a much better reference would be found here: http://lolita-handbook.livejournal.com/I think that there are a lot of aspects to (real) Lolita fashion that you would like. Designers like Metamorphose put out some adorable retro-inspired prints and 50s silhouettes, full skirts and petticoats are practically compulsory, and there is even an extremely coveted dress by Angelic Pretty that features metallic ric-rac!

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-- November 12, 2008 at 2:31 pm

how cute is he???

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Cel Petro November 12, 2008 at 2:47 pm

So many things to love about this design and its creator. The detail, the moon heart design carried to the face, and it has the cachet of a design drawing for goodness sakes. Plus 4th grade boys are often some of my favorite inspirations–they bridge some sort of whimsey/practical, child/wise elder divide in the universe and many express it well, as he does. Thanks for the great drawing and inspiration, son of Erin.

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Little Hunting Creek November 12, 2008 at 3:18 pm

this dress is genius, ask him to design some more :). I LOVE thesleeves and the stockings especially

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Cindy November 12, 2008 at 4:30 pm

I love that he has a “texture” tight! What an eye–he has learned well from you! cindy

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brocadegoddess November 12, 2008 at 6:48 pm

Totally Freakin’ Awesome!!! I also agree that you should totally make it – and then send photos to places like h.Naoto, Baby the Stars Shine Bright, or one of the other Lolita designer names, I bet they’d eat it up!The details are what make it truly fabulous! Maybe he could be a fashion designer who moonlights as Indiana Jones – or the other way round?

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Otherwise known as Jen November 12, 2008 at 7:59 pm

That is so adorable! And you are right, he got the look absolutely spot-on :) I love that the dress is a princess cut…really reflects on his powers of observation!

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CC November 12, 2008 at 10:12 pm

I’m seeing it in a deep navy, something shimmery, with ecru lace, piping, and petticoats. The textured tights should also be navy. The moons and hearts need to pop. I think instead of applique the need to be embroidered, probably using and ombre thread in blue tones or bright yellow for an in your face pop.This is much more wearable and tasteful than many of the things out there to purchase.

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Kelly November 12, 2008 at 11:23 pm

When I first saw the drawing I thought he might have been doing a project for school and I was really mad at whom ever gave him the D+. Then I read farther down and saw he gave that to himself.. That is a wonderful dress your son designed… Definitely A++ work. I would love to have one of my very own. When is he going to come out with his own pattern line? He definitely has talent. k

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Kate November 12, 2008 at 11:39 pm

LOVE it! He totally got me with those stockings. What a clever guy!K Q:-)

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Cat November 13, 2008 at 1:53 am

This is fabulous! He has already picked up one of the most important design features, princess seams are flattering to nearly all female shapes. Love the details and I agree with labelladonna, please make this dress, anyone!

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Anonymous November 13, 2008 at 4:09 am

GREAT! I love it. Get him to put the date on it and sign it. Then stick it in your jewelry box or special portfolio!sewbeads

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-E November 13, 2008 at 6:51 am

love it! LOVE IT! If my son ever starts talking, we’re betting his first word is “burda”…

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lucitebox November 13, 2008 at 8:04 am

Totally adorable! Thanks for sharing!

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GremlyGril November 13, 2008 at 9:43 am

LOVE it — I’d wear it in a second! Those pointed shoulders are something else, and i’m intrigued by the hairstyle…

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Jen ~ MOMSPatterns November 13, 2008 at 9:57 am

That is the coolest picture ever!! I can’t get my boys to draw anything but stick figures.Genius, indeed.. you’re a lucky gal!PS. Please let him know Jen gives him an A- Just because of the scribble, but hey, he drew it with PEN! :)

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Anonymous November 13, 2008 at 10:18 am

Ah, the young…Such incredible detail and such a sweet gesture–aren’t little boys wonderful? Hey, I want to be Indiana Jones, too, and I’m, well, waaaaaay older than him.

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Cookie November 13, 2008 at 11:26 am

The other thing I notice about this design extravaganza is that it’s very “forgiving” (i.e., slenderizing). Because look how at the hipline it notes 20 in. across. It’s not EVERY design that can make 40″ hips look so narrow! Well played.

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AuntieShel November 13, 2008 at 11:28 am

The little guy is on to something…and this dress begs to be made…mom???

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Anonymous November 13, 2008 at 11:42 am

A+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++You HAVE to make this!

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Lavon November 13, 2008 at 12:00 pm

Make the dress! He would love it.My little niece drew a dress and I happen to have the perfect fabric for it she was thrilled that she could wear her design.He would love to see his creation worn by is muse!

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Joni November 13, 2008 at 3:47 pm

In my mind’s eye this dress is sjy blue, with orange piping. The hearts and moons will really pop against the white scalloped border (and really, how cool is your son for using a border print). I’ve been thinking about this dress all day, that’s how great it is.

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Summerset November 13, 2008 at 5:25 pm

Cute and very interesting his artistic interpretation!

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wundermary November 14, 2008 at 4:10 am

This is great! Someone mentioned metallic rick rack…

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joni November 14, 2008 at 4:28 am

Sky blue. Apparently I’m as bad as a speller as your son is good as a designer…

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sarai November 14, 2008 at 8:36 am

Wow, I LOVE kids’ drawings, and this design is awesome. I also love that he was inspired by the $1200 price tag. And I agree that you should totally make the dress.

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Hilary Caroline November 16, 2008 at 10:26 am

haha oh my goodness, this is just too cute. he’s definitely got some talent! ;)

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alas November 17, 2008 at 12:42 pm

nice dress

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