My Son, the Fashion Designer

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 thoughts on “My Son, the Fashion Designer

  1. 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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  2. 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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  3. 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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  4. 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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  5. 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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  6. 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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  7. 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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  8. 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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  9. 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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  10. 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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  11. 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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  12. 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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  13. 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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  14. 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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  15. 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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  16. 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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  17. 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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  18. 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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  19. 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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