The Upside Down

Cue Will Smith. Now this is a story all about how my life got flipped-turned upside down … by my worst project to date.

As the weeks dragged on my excitement began to slowly ebb away, as did my will to live. The result? Several mental breakdowns, a new haircut that had the vibes of Jenna’s Ratchet Salon, copious amounts of junk food consumed and the most ridiculous events causing me to break into tears.

It was as if god couldn’t get enough of my suffering.

‘Well, I guess on top of everything else you’re gonna be $1 short of paying rent this week.’

Cue hysterical laughter which quickly eventuated into tears.

The semester truly was a roller coaster ride of emotions. Eight weeks before I stood crying in the kitchen at my failure of a project while shoving chocolate into my mouth, I thought things couldn’t be better.

It had taken me two years, but I finally felt that I belonged in fashion. No longer was I some impostor who had little machine skills but a whole lot of imagination.

The realisation hit me one afternoon after two hours of scrolling through Pinterest purely looking at fashion. Most of my internal and external dialogue is influenced by Jenna Marbles, so there is a high chance that the exact thought I had at that moment would have been “Oh sheet beech, maybe you’re on the right path AFTER all.”

And with all the praise from my lecturers fattening me up like a thanksgiving turkey, I thought little could go wrong. With a solid A thanks to my ‘in depth research’, ‘risk taking designs’ and ‘wonderful digital illustrations’ I forgot briefly that I can’t make pattern make.

Which is in fact quite vital.

And so the descent into hell began for the second half of the semester.

I blindly walked into it with a few half assed toiles just feeling happy that they somewhat resembled my illustrations at all. My already somewhat tired small brain didn’t think far enough ahead to consider how I would hem or line the garments, and that toiling in a fabric similar to the chosen final fabric is (duh) VITAL.

Call me a clown, but I was too busy trying to juggle the roles of my group members in another class. Hah. While I was in fashion trying to draft a pattern I’d be waiting for the ol Team Tumnus group chat to pop off about how someone was sick and couldn’t make it to a meeting or they were too busy, etc.

In what world does the introvert end up becoming the leader for a group project? It wasn’t even that I challenged myself to, it was the pure lack of brain cells from everyone else that saw my name written on every part of the project. It was literally like that Marc Jacobs for Marc Jacobs by Marc Jacobs in collaboration with Marc Jacobs scenario.

Idea? Me.

Visuals? Me.

Research? Me.

Blog? Me.

Presentation script? Olly? Nope, me.

Without fail, every single time the group met up I wanted to passive aggressively say “Hi, do you know how a group project is supposed to work? If not, wHy ArE You HeRE?” But I never did.

Carrying Team (?) Tumnus on my shoulders, things quickly started to go wrong, and unable to afford alcohol until the semester was finished, I began to spiral.

It was like god was handing out free pamphlets except they were never for anything good.

Oh, that custom zip order you made? Well a slight miscommunication means that your entire order is wrong.

You’ve run out of time and can’t place another order? Sorry, but none of the fabric stores in Wellington have the zip sizes you want.

You wanted a wool fabric in baby blue? Unfortunately all there is on offer is this shitty nylon blend, here you go!

Oh, you want to sew a zip fastening between the wool and nylon blend? That’s not gonna happen.

You needed the zips to arrive a few days before the due date? Well how about the night before?!

And of course there were some mistakes that were purely my fault, such as forgetting how linings worked and not trialing it beforehand, not toiling full garments and more that will make me tear up again if I recall too much of this project.

But without further ado, introducing LABELS, a multiwear, agender collection that was designed with the intent to fit and suit anyone regardless of gender or size, with adjustable zips allowing the garments to be styled in multiple ways/fits.

The Casey Coat

The Bailey Blouse & Drew Dress/Skirt

Before I ask the floor to open me up and swallow me whole because I just remembered how mediocre my collection was compared to everyone else’s in my class *upside down smiley face* I’m gonna end it here.

Taking this all into consideration, I think its fair to say I’m in the wrong degree. Utterly and completely. I should be out there shoving cameras into peoples faces but I’m about two years too late.

I guess for now, I’ll just have to keep winging it.

P.S Don’t underestimate the importance of time management and prioritisation, kiddos. She’s vital.

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