Who watches Project Runway? I watch it here and there in spurts (I can’t handle the stress in long doses) and something I’ve noticed every season is there’s always some level of shit talking toward the designers that are self-taught. I’ve been thinking a lot about that lately as I’m attempting to teach myself clothing construction. Because here’s the thing: Obviously, going to design school is the “right” way to do this thing. While the internet makes it relatively easy to find the resources I need to teach myself, it is hard and frustrating AF trying to figure out and troubleshoot any issues I come up against. Every time I’m following along with an online course or whatever, my inner dialogue sounds a little like this.

This doesn’t look right. Did I do something wrong? Why doesn’t this look like theirs? Why am I getting weird bunching here? Did I skip a step? I gotta rewatch that part. What did I do wrong? How does theirs look so smooth? Maybe I didn’t block this right. Did I miss something in the video? WHAT AM I DOING WRONG??

It’s stressful, guys. And while I would love nothing more than to drop everything I’m doing and attend a proper design school, my real life commitments just don’t make that super feasible. So, instead, I’m trying to tell myself that maybe it doesn’t matter AS MUCH that what I’m draping or drafting looks exactly like what’s being shown in the course. What matters is that the drape looks good on my dress form.

I definitely don’t consider myself a perfectionist but I do struggle when what I’m doing doesn’t look like I think it should. But, so far, this little reminder seems to be helping me. What I try to do is follow whatever course or video I’m following as best I can. Then, I’m trying to trust myself to make adjustments where I think they need to be until the drape looks good on the form. Which is really the end goal, right?

All of this is basically to say I have no idea what I’m doing but going with “common sense” has helped a little, I think. We’ll see once this particular dress is completed, I guess.

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