By Lucy Wyndham
It’s no secret that the arts are seriously underfunded in many American schools, giving students limited access to creative programs. One such area that many schools fail to touch upon is the world of fashion design. Students around D.C. who are interested in learning more about the world of fashion often have a difficult time doing so, as most schools don’t offer pertinent classes. To better accommodate the interests of all students, D.C. schools should make an effort to introduce more arts programs into their schools, including courses in fashion design.
Introducing Fashion Into the Curriculum
Bringing fashion into the school curriculum doesn’t have to be complicated. Instead of introducing an entirely new class, kids can learn about fashion in an arts or home economics module. This solution is both a cheap and effective way to introduce school-aged children to fashion design. If there’s no room in the curriculum during the school day, administrators can start after-school programs for students who are interested in learning more about the core skills needed to succeed as a fashion designer such as:
~ Sketching: Students need to have a basic understanding of how to sketch out the anatomy of the human body. This allows them to create realistic mockups for their clothing designs.
~ Sewing: No fashion designer can get started without a basic knowledge of sewing. Kids should learn both how to sew by hand and how to use a sewing machine.
~ Software Design: These days, many industries are going digital, and the world of fashion is no exception. In addition to sketching, kids should learn how to use popular design programs such as Adobe Illustrator.
Junior Fashion Design Programs in D.C.
Even if their school is unable to offer a comprehensive fashion program, schoolchildren in D.C. can still learn about clothing design, sewing, and more at several kid-friendly locations around the city. There are places that offer courses during the school year, and some that hold week-long camps in the summer. Here are some of the best programs for young aspiring fashion designers in the D.C. area:
~ Creative Youth: Kids and teens can take classes in sewing, fashion design, jewelry making, video production, and digital photography. The venue also hosts birthday parties for budding fashionistas and a week-long summer camp.
~ Lavner Fashion Design Camp: During this week-long summer camp, kids brainstorm ideas, sketch their designs, and construct clothing and accessories.
~ Modeling Camp: Girls from ages 11 to 17 can learn all about the world of fashion in this camp, which includes workshops, photo shoots, and sessions with industry professionals.
Clothing design is an interesting and rewarding field for creative minds, but many kids don’t get exposed to the world of fashion beyond what they see on TV and in magazines. To help children cultivate their unique interests, schools in the D.C. area should make an effort to include a wider variety of courses, including those to do with fashion. Kids and teens can also learn more about fashion design by attending local classes, seminars, and summer camps.