My first semester of fashion design school is done and I loved every stressful, creative minute of it. A few weeks into the program, I noticed I may have been one of the only married people with kids (everyone I told was literally shocked) making this experience, in my opinion, completely different then some of the others for better or worse. Adding the element of school with it’s homework/projects/tests on top of the attention I give to my site (which those of you may know, it is a full time 40 hour week dedication), my kids, and my husband, something had to give. Sadly that was my blog. I did give it less attention for the sake of my own sanity and my family. But it paid off and because I dedicated the majority of the extra time to my schooling and entrenched myself in fashion design I learned so much and built the confidence and the skill I NEED for my future plans.
Now some of you are asking…man….should I make the leap too? Well, here are some things I came away with and why i decided to go with Academy of Art University.
Some quick pros and cons….
Beneficial for my future – what I learned just in one month has helped me solidify what I wanted for this blog and for my future career. I now know with certainty what I want to do and that I’m going to love it. Before going to school, it was more of a cool idea. Now I know so much is possible and I have the potential to do it. Seeing other students few years down in their Master’s degree gets me excited to further my education. Although I’m planning on doing it differently than they have.
Connections – I made friends with a lot of new people (who I will forever cherish and miss) and met a lot of fashion big wigs and companies in the industry. That hopefully draw on for help in the future.
Confidence and Assurance – Before I attended, I always had 2 questions run through my mind…do I really want to do this and can I do this?? these questions were answered, especially after viewing the fashion show…. I felt like anything is possible!! I felt that you don’t need to worry about whether or not people love your designs or if I’m going to be crazy overwhelmed by those talented designers or in my case right now those amazing readers and talented bloggers, because “life is more simple than people make it out to be” – Max Azria. No one really has their family perfectly dressed and well mannered with no confrontation, living in always clean house and rolling around in piles of money. never argues with their kids and husband. Just live my life, keep doing what I love, and don’t worry about anything else. Just enjoy it and do what you love. Also, before I showed up, I thought about how beautifully everyone was going to be dressed and in style and possibly how snobby they would be because all of my clothing is handmade and thrifted. I quickly found out that most fashion design majors were like me! They dressed however they wanted, because like Max Azria said “attitude is your style”.
New place and people – This broadened my “bubble”. I learned so much about people and the city of San Francisco, it was eye opening and life changing in a great way. And because of this new exploration, my little family becomes a little closer.
everything else gets put on the back burner – anything school related goes, homework allllmost becomes number 1 (just below the motherly duties of course). Work/blog/play gets shoved far back into the back of your mind. This is a very time consuming major because you are using your extra time and mind power to create and you will want to! It isn’t like you can crack open a book, study, and ace the test…you have to be creative and innovative, the side of my brain that was never used for my undergraduate degree.
Pricey – even if your tuition isn’t, everything will add up. But, you already know that going in to it….education costs money. If you are doing this just for fun…maybe something ilk a local class that is slower pasted and costs way less. Im currently looking for a cheap pattern making class because I don’t want to take the in depth one at AAU.
Why AAU? I choose to go with Academy of Art University, because it is ranked one of the top 5 fashion schools in the nation and top 15 in the world, it also is the ONLY fashion school to show at New York fashion week. Although I would have looooved to attend FIT or Parsons, New York wasn’t an option for us and plus my favorite city in the entire world is San Francisco (and still is!), thus, further narrowing my options. Then there was time to consider FIDM or AAU. I found FIDM to by at least 2x more expensive, and I’m sure the quality of education is just as great as AAU, AAU was ranked considerably better. Upon attending there, I found that many designers, fashion illustrators, big named teachers now teach there and found this significantly superior to many fashion schools. My fashion design teacher was previously the head accessory designer over at Celine in Paris for 13 years (give or take), and my dynamic fashion teacher taught Alexander McQueen in England years ago among others. In a recent Q&A with the lead designers of BCBG , Max Azria commented on this being one of the most talented Fashion Schools he had ever seen. I personally loved the education, I constantly found myself challenged, excited, and motivated throughout the whole process. If you have attended this or other fashion schools yourself….let us know how you liked it!
All in all, this experience was amazing and gave me the boost I needed. And as you can see from the graduate school final fashion show I will post tomorrow! Here is a mini tour of my classes and building.
Front desk we check in at and the Cafe where everyone grabs their coffee during break (except me-I get lemonade pomegranate juice). Everyone squeezes in here at lunch and eat salads or their gross looking fries, I always nuked up some cup o’ noodles.
Fashion Design 1 – my most favorite class I have ever taken! We became a family. There are a few in there that are for sure becoming big designers. Some talented talented people. This is the view from my seat…this class was over 6 hours long…can you believe it? My teacher was a head accessories designer for Celine and Chloe in Paris, can you tell she loves her jewelry? Look at that amazing necklace. She wore a completely different and awesome new one every week
. My textiles class, where I learned EVERYTHING about fabric. Seriously ask me a question…just kidding…thats too much pressure. This is my teacher Matthew, he was sassy, yet smart and funny. I made some fun friends in this class!