Ralph joined the fashion industry as a tie seller. He tried to introduce his own tie designs for the company, but his enthusiasm wasn’t perceived well. So, he left the company and launched his own mini-business: he sewed his first ties out of rags and distributed them to small shops. The most defining order of 100 dozens of ties by Neiman Marcus has radically changed Ralph’s life. He expanded his business by introducing menswear and womenswear lines. Currently his brand is worth $7.5 billion. Ralph Lauren’s success story inspires many novice designers. The first Polo logo was introduced in 1970.
In 1966 Paco Rabanne opened his own outlet at the age of 32, where he earned international repute for his metal-linked plastic-disc dresses, sun goggles and jewelry made of plastic in primary colors. Paco Rabanne’s dresses made of small plastic tiles linked together by chains, stole the show in Paris. His first collection, titled “12 Unwearable Dresses in Contemporary Materials,” sums up his philosophy that “the only new frontier left in fashion is the finding of new materials.” Throughout his career, Rabanne experimented with everything from plastic and aluminum to fiberglass and paper to create futuristic, eccentric, yet highly influential garments.
A picture tells a thousand stories and considering the noise that surrounds the launch of every issue of Vogue - endless hashtags and chatter about the cover model, photographer and pose, it seems inconceivable that covers in the past featured fashion illustrations elaborating far more detailed stories. The romance of images by John Ward and Carl Erickson, surrealism of Dali and Benito, and art deco of Bernard Boutet de Monvel, Georges Barbier and Harriet Meserole spun tales of arctic explorers; tennis players; bridal marches; world travellers; golfers; race drivers, actresses, mothers and lovers. In the days before photography became fashion’s key documenter, fashion illustration was just as emotive and colourful - if not more so - as the images burned onto our retinas more recently by Penn, Bailey, Day, Meisel and Mert & Marcus. Call to mind the images created by Rene Gruau as Dior’s artistic director in 1947 - there is no doubt as to the part illustration used to play in fashion storytelling.
Select your best pieces. You definitely want to include your best work in your portfolio. Aim to have between one and two pieces of really high quality work per project. Go for pieces that represent your personal style and approach to design. Maybe you tend to focus on designing for a certain demographic (young, fashion forward women, androgynous men, active children, etc) or around a certain theme. You may then include pieces that illustrate your ideal customer or consumer. You may select pieces that have also been well regarded in your design classes and considered some of your best work by professors and peers.