A career as a fashion illustrator typically requires a bachelor's degree in graphic design or a related field. Those interested in pursuing this career will need to build a portfolio to showcase their work to potential employers. Fashion illustrators use art to express fashion designs and ideas, and they may be employed by publications, studios, fashion designers or clothing manufacturers.
The silhouette at this time was a masculine one with flatter chests that were held down by specially made corsets. Bras weren’t about support as they are now, some were little more than camisoles, some women even went without bras in order to look more flat chested and breasts would therefore sit much lower down the chest wall as a result. Those with a more generous chest size would attempt to bandage their breasts down flat. The “Symington Side Lacer,” was a bra whose sole intention was to do just that. It was created so that both side could be pulled until the chest was flattened with lacing on both sides of the bra.
Josephine Baker is the woman who inspired Beyonce’s booty-shake. How cool is that? The original showgirl was famous for her ‘banana dance’, plus she was a spy and she owned a pet cheetah, which she used to walk in Paris. A queen of accessorising, the Jazz Age beauty sometimes wore little else on stage, and by day she worked an Art Deco print like no other.

“It’s changing, and it’s becoming a much more friendly industry for women particularly,” says Susannah Garrod, who studied fine art at Central Saint Martins and now counts Vogue, Jimmy Choo, Emilia Wickstead and Jessica McCormack as clients as well as contributing to the Fashion Illustration Gallery stable run by William Ling. “Instagram allowed me to record more personal, rather than client-based work - which in turn generated more work ... as a 'jobbing' illustrator it’s been rewarding to be commissioned for work in my own right rather than creating illustrations strictly dictated by the client. These days fashion illustration is appreciated by a more social savvy audience as an art form rather than a 'paint by numbers' necessity to record. People are looking for something different if they commission a fashion illustrator rather than a photographer - it’s no longer the 'poor relation' but an intimate way of interpreting fashion which stands the test of time as a commentary on the industry as a whole.”
Evening dresses were made of fine materials like silk, chiffon, taffeta and light velvet. They were usually sleeveless for young women and long sleeves for older women. Dresses featured the iconic ’20s drop waist with layers or tiers of fabric creating some fullness from the waist down. Beaded dresses were the most glamorous and most expensive. Some had fringe or metal sequins, but this was quite rare. The short, fringed flapper dress is a ’20s myth. Real flappers wore knee-length or longer gowns that swished and swayed white dancing to jazz.
We are eternally grateful to Mademoiselle Coco Chanel for so many definitive 1920s fashion styles, and some of the greatest sartorial inventions; the little black dress, skirt suit, costume jewellery, espadrilles… But her greatest, most overarching influence? The liberation of women’s clothing and the concept of casual chic in the 1920s. Chanel led the trend for a flatter, corset-free bust, a streamlined silhouette with no hyper-waistline and she popularised trousers for women. Next time you let it all hang out after a huge dinner, you can thank this woman.
Why: Hailing from Sao Paulo, Helena Bordon is one of Brazil’s most influential style bloggers. She started her fashion education from a young age courtesy of her mother, Donata Meirelles, the style director of Vogue Brazil. When Helena was just 7 years old, she’d join her mum at all the top fashion shows and eventually interned at Valentino. Now, Helena is co-founder of Brazilian high street fashion chain 284, as well as finding the time to run her eponymous blog, helenabordon.com, which offers Helena’s insider style, travel and beauty tips. Disclaimer: expect holiday envy.
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