Tuesday, September 21, 2010

A Couple of Days in Rome

I recently caught up with a good friend in Rome this last weekend, and I just wanted to share a few pics of my latest travel around Italy. This country is amazingly beautiful. The history, the architecture, the art, the shopping, the people are really something to see. Here are a few pics from my weekend.

Fontana dei Trevi

Me on a stairwell near the City Center

One of two huge fountains in Piazza di San Pietro - where the Pope speaks.

The dark window in the middle is where the Pope comes out to address the crowd.

The Coliseum

Drinking from the Fountain near Fontana dei Trevi. The water all over Rome is wonderful! In the parks at the fountains. You must have some when you come!

I'm sure I'll see you soon! Ciao a Tutti!

Monday, September 20, 2010

The First Three Weeks: Phew!

So, design school is no joke. I am in class everyday from 9am to 6pm with very short breaks and lots of work to complete at home. Now, as I enter the third week of school, I think my body and my mind are adjusting to the rigors of the program. I can tell that my sketches are improving with speed and accuracy, and I'm learning to sew with industrial machines.

I'm not going to lie: this has been a little intimidating. Some of the students in my very small program (13 in my class from Korea, China, and United States) have had much more training than I have - up to six years of art and some have studied design already. I've had no formal training. All the same, I am so focused on learning these new skills, that I don't care what everyone else does. I'm here for me and my dream. My professors can see my determination, and I get a lot of great attention. In just three weeks, I've grown exponentially. I can't wait to see what my semester projects look like. Don't worry, I'll be sure you see them too.

I'm also taking an International Buying and Marketing Class in the Fashion Marketing department. This class is 50% in the class room and 50% in boutiques, factories, and artisan workshops. This week we went to La Scuola del Cuoio -- The Leather School.

This place is really special. It's housed on the campus of a Franciscan Monastery of the Santa Croce Church in Florence. Inside, they handcraft handbags and other leather goods from the finest of materials. As a customer, you can select your own materials, colors, and even have your name engraved in gold.

My instructor, Inger, is well connected in the industry. She sets up amazing opportunities for us to be able to talk to the people who run these various establishments. For our final project, I essentially have to put my entire business plan together to include my logo, target market profile, product samples etc. It blends seamlessly with another final project I have for art and design which requires me to create my collection.

It is really late, but I wanted to be sure to share all that has happened in the last few weeks. It is really busy, but I am really happy.

Ciao a tutti!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

First Week of Design School in Florence

Here are a few pictures of my design school here in Florence. I am an International Fashion Design student at Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT based in NYC), but the Italian campus is housed at Polimoda, an International Fashion Design and Marketing school in Florence. Every time I tell people in Florence where I go to school, they are always like "oh wow, that school". I knew it was a good school, but I didn't realize how well respected it was among the locals. It's a good feeling to be at one of the best schools in the country.

This week is orientation week. I just received my class schedule, and my course of study is quite rigorous. I'll be in class from 9 - 5pm, sometimes 9 - 6pm with about an hour break only on 4 days of the week. The fifth day goes straight through with a student association meeting at the lunch hour. This is no joke! I'm glad. I didn't want to come here to waste my time - not that you could do that here. Everything around you is so enriching.

The campus of Polimoda is housed in Villa Strozzi. It's a beautiful park, the well maintained grounds of and old Italian palace. There's a bar (cafeteria), an outdoor stage where they hold graduation, and the actual home which is now administrative offices and the library.

This is the ceiling of library. The floor to ceiling windows have a beautiful panoramic view of Florence.

This is where I go to school. You can picture me here!