Martini Blahnik: Behind The Graphic

While most students walk out of Textile Testing with knowledge about flammability standards, fiber structure, and stain prevention, I walked out of the course with a notebook full of doodles. Yep. I wasn't best friends with this weekly 3 hour lecture, despite my many attempts for us to become acquaintances. Call me crazy, but taking notes about surfactants is far less interesting than drawing shoes in the margins. 

Alas, this is how the Martini Blahnik graphic was born. At first, my pen started creating different combinations of food + fashion (life's two necessities). Banana sneakers, strappy sandals made out of cherry stems, and ultimately a mule crafted from an orange peel. The doodles continued to evolve, but this time into a martini glass. You can see what this lecture was driving me to... I titled the shoe-shaped glass "mar-toes-i." Not my best pun, I'll admit it. The rest of the thought process went like this: 

Mar-toes-i > bad dad joke > Wells, do better > ok, three syllables > must relate to shoes > alliteration: a plus > Manolo Blahnik > Martini sound like Manolo >  Martini Blahnik!

You could say my thoughts kept pace with the lecture's powerpoint slides (sorry, Dr. Sharma). When I returned home I almost immediately started sketching. Truth be told, I'm not much of a "draw for fun" gal. But the motivation to polish my doodle into an illustration piqued my interest.

It was satisfying to later incorporate the graphic into an actual textile, recalling lessons-past from my Color Theory, Design Process, and Arts classes. This sparked a desire to design more textiles, ultimately leading to the creation of Swells of Splendor.

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my sketches from textile testing

1 comment

  • I love this story! Dr. Sharma would be proud :)

    Leslie

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