Category Archives: Resources

Fashion Drawing Template

Fashion Drawing Block

© Luxury of Labour 2009

To download and print this image in any size …  click on the image to open a high resolution version (it will open in a separate window).  In this window right-click and save the image to your hard drive or desktop; from there you should be able to double-click to open in your default image editor and print either A4or the size you require in Black & White from there.


Dress Making Workshop 2: 7th March

Week 2:  This week we will start with reviewing your mood boards – if possible photograph and post onto the blog  (using the comments response box) your 5 items from week one or bring images or the key items which form the starting point for your individual dress design.

We aim to cover pattern making and the sewing introduction this week.  If you have your own machine which you want to familiarise yourself with – please bring it along – and we’ll work out a way to manage the space!  The sewing introduction will include : threading your machine and filling a bobbin, sewing fabric  and seaming –  if you wish to practice on a particular fabric, please bring with you.  Demo’s may  include : overlocking, hemming, pockets, zips, setting in a sleeve, lining, buttons and button holing and hand finishing .

Our aim is to try and tailor our approach to your individual requirements – but remember there are only 5 weeks and we want beautiful finished dresses – so if you can bring your toile or final fabric this week the faster we can progress to pattern cutting! If in any doubt about how much fabric to buy post the width on the blog and we’ll let you know.

Summary of what to bring: Week 2

  • Mood Boards
  • Imagery of/or Key Items from Week 1 (5 Loved Objects)
  • Sewing Machine (if you wish to use your own machine)
  • Fabric Scissors if you have them (we will also provide scissors for your use)
  • Toile/Final Fabric and matching thread (N.B. if you are planning to overlock you will need x4 reels of thread)

Ideas & Inspiration

Image Credit:

Image Credit:

Louise Goldin is an exciting young British designer; primarily a knitwear designer her work is innovative and intricate. Her Fall 2009/10 collection was inspired by zoomorphic architecture; ShowStudio recorded a series of interviews unveiling her design process. The Spring 2010 RTW collection was inspired by Gianni Versace’s mid-nineties advertising campaigns.

A cautionary note you can lose hours on these sites! We’ll be posting further ideas and inspiration during the course of the week – so keep checking the blog.

Liberty: Fabric Resource

Image Credit: Liberty

Image Credit: Liberty

Liberty offer an online selection of new and iconic print fabrics in cotton jersey, cotton lawn and silk. The cotton lawn is very light weight and would be difficult to use in terms of drape; however both the jersey and silk qualities will drape well. You can order samples directly with the London store on 0207 734 1234.

Instructions for Taking Measurements

© Luxury of Labour 2009

© Luxury of Labour 2009

1. Shoulder to Shoulder: Only needed for dress with sleeves. This is the width of your shoulder.  

2. Bust: not your bra size! Take the tape around your back and bring it  across the fullest part of your bust. Your arms should be relaxed, down at your sides. You must wear a bra when taking this measurement.

a. Strapless: (or upper bust) just above your bust.

 3. Waist: this is the smallest part of your waist. Typically it’s an inch or so above your belly button; also known as the natural waistline.

 4. Hips: this is the widest part of your hips, across the hipbone. Measurement is taken approximately seven inches below the natural waistline.

 5. Length from Back: length from centre back at the nape of your neck to required length. You should stand upright without your shoes and your feet should keep together.

 6. Length from Front: Let the tape drape across your bust to the front and drop naturally to the waist – take a second measurement from waist to required length.

 7. Upper Arm Perimeter: Only needed for style with sleeves. Take the tape around your upper arm and bring it across the fullest part of your arm.

 8. Shoulder to Wrist: Only needed for style with sleeves.

 9. Neck Perimeter: Only needed for styles with roll neck or necklace.

 10. Height without Shoes: From head to feet without shoes.

Instructions for Sewing Block

© Luxury of Labour 2009: Not for Commercial Use

© Luxury of Labour 2009: Not for Commercial Use

Stage 1: Cut out fabric by first cutting one side (if you are joining at center back  seam) from card block, flip block on fold line to cut out other side

Stage 2: Overlock if required, decide at this stage whether to line and then french seam centre back

Stage 3: Pin & chalk stitch line (apart from if you are making cape)

Stage 4: Decide on sleeve pattern and cut out; overlocking shoulder and cuff

Stage 5: Insert sleeve

Stage 6: Double turn edge of hem or bag out lining

Stage 7: Sew in stitch line on right side of fabric i.e. wrong sides together


  • Press between all stages to ensure a neat finish
  • If you require a longer dress i.e. below the knee add 3″ to the length (medium block)
  • The belt will require fusible for rigidity for obi style sash belt. The majority of dresses will need to be lined or half lined to give a neater finish at the armholes.

Online Fabric Resource

Image Credit: MacCulloch & Wallis

Image Credit: MacCulloch & Wallis

Very broad range of fabrics from MacCulloch & Wallis including extra wide width jersey, (which you will not have to join along the centre back of our dress block – 3 metres max required)  printed silks and lace etc. A very good source indeed! They provide a free postal sample service (5 samples maximum apart from the very expensive fabrics and trims); you can call them on 0207 629 0311 or e mail  Please note, fabric prices exclude VAT and delivery is a standard charge of £7.50 excluding VAT.