Barbie Themed Party Ideas!

Invitations: Choose die cut paper that look like clothes Barbie would wear, such as a fancy dress or fun purse. Glue these on the front of blank note cards or card stock and decorate with glittery gel pens and glitter glue. You can even use cutouts from a fashion magazine or even attach the invite to a bottle of nail polish or a pair of fashion sunglasses. Remind party guests to wear their prettiest pink clothes and bring their favorite Barbie doll. This is a really cute invitation idea – take a photo of the birthday child dressed up all dirty and with ugly clothes, hair all messed up. This will be the BEFORE picture. Then, clean them up and dress them up with nice clothes, hair and make-up and take an AFTER picture. Glue the before and after on the front of the card and on the inside use the caption in bold letters “Join us for a Barbie Makeover!”

Decorations: Pink and very fashionable of course! Create the interior of a Barbie dream house with girlie touches everywhere. Bows, sparkles, flowers and candles should do the trick. Decorate your tables with pink tablecloths, white doilies and sprinkle with sequins and pink candies. Add bouquets of pink and white balloons around the party room with bunches of twisted matching streamers. Hang Barbie Posters around the area and do not forget to bring out all your child’s barbie dolls, accessories and toys.

Activities: Have a Barbie Makeover. Allow all of the girls to dress up when they arrive. Pull out old dresses, shoes, hats, scarves and accessories from your closet (friends and family too) for dress-up time. Second Hand and Salvation Army stores can be a great spot to visit for these type of finds. Have an area set aside for a quick kid-friendly makeover, complete with lip gloss, hand mirrors, simple makeup and a full-length mirror to admire the results. After the girls get glamorous, have a space for Barbie’s makeover as well. Have brushes and ribbon on hand for a quick Barbie hair makeover. What’s the highlight of fashionable child parties? A fashion show of course! You’ll want to assign an area to be the walkway. You can use a long piece of fabric or carpet to be the walkway. To create the effect of a real fashion show you’ll want to make curtains in a door way so that the kids can stand behind them and come out one by one. You can even just hang sheets from the ceiling on both sides of the long walkway. Blinking strings of Christmas lights also create a wonderful effect! Make sure to record the moment and take plenty of pictures!

Games: Play Hot Purse, which is traditional Hot Potato but with a twist! The winner of each round wears a special Barbie tiara for the next round. The children sit in a circle and pass around a purse while the music plays. In Hot Purse the person holding the purse is considered the winner of the round and gets to open the purse and choose a small, wrapped prize. The last player standing can win the purse! Play Barbie Relay. This is a race to see who can dress her Barbie the fastest. Give all players similar clothing, including pants, shirt and shoes. You can make this game a bit harder by adding a blindfold or a pair of gloves.

Crafts: Give the kids a creative opportunity to be young designers. What you’ll need is pre-cut pieces of card stock paper in a shape of a body or mannequin form. Provide the guests with each crayons, markers, glue, gems, buttons, scissors, scrap fabric, etc. to decorate and make up their own unique fashions – much like paper dolls. Other popular activities include bracelet making, frame decorating or t-shirt designing.

Party Food: Keep it Pink! – everything really is prettier in pink! Serve heart shaped sandwiches filled with strawberry jam and marshmallow fluff or open faced mini croissants covered in raspberry cream cheese with fresh raspberries on top. How about an array of fresh fruit with pink Cool Whip for dipping or strawberries dipped in white chocolate that has been died pink. Snacks could be pink popcorn and pink sugar cookies. The possibilities are endless with just a few drops of red food colouring – anything from whips, chocolates, cheeses and dips can be made pink! A fun beverage could be pink lemonade served with ice cubes that have cherries frozen into them. There are several options for fun and beautiful Barbie cakes that you can make. One of the most impressive cakes is to build the cake around an actual Barbie doll. This is actually fairly easy to make on your own and it is sure to delight the birthday girl and her guests. All you need to make this cake is a glass baking bowl, cake mix and frosting of your choice, and a Barbie doll. Simply prepare the cake in the glass bowl – this will serve as the skirt of Barbie’s dress. Let it cool and remove from the bowl, then take an unclothed Barbie and insert her in the middle of the cake, up to her waist (it is easiest to make a small hole for her first). Next, you make Barbie’s dress by applying frosting to the cake, which soon starts to be recognizable as the skirt of her dress. You can make it as simple or as elaborate as you wish. Complete directions for this type of cake can be found on the Internet. Another option is simply to make or buy a regular sheet cake and decorate it with a picture of Barbie, candles and a birthday message. You can ask to have the colors of the cake be the same as the decorations that you have used so it will all tie together nicely. Pink icing, white polka dots and some fabric bows might be nice!

Party Favors: You can fill jewelry boxes or small purses with all kinds of accessories such as nail polish, lip-gloss, pink bubble gum, tiaras, dolls,hair clips, sunglasses, rings, bracelets, necklaces, doll clothes – anything Girlie! Another great idea for party favors (if you’ve got a digital camera and color printer) is to take “before” and “after” pictures of the girls and give them a copy along with their other favors.

Fashion Design Skills 101 – Skills That Fashion Schools Don’t Cover Nearly Enough

In fashion school, most of your time was spent learning to create fashion illustrations, draping, sewing, and flat patternmaking. While these are good skills to have, they aren’t very practical when you’re trying to land your first job in the fashion industry. In the real world you’ll be expected to know how to create computerized flat sketches, develop garment specs, CADs, and presentation boards. And I know some of you are thinking “But I learned those things in school too!” To which I reply: You think you know, but you have no idea! Take it from experience: fashion schools don’t focus on those skills nearly enough to fully prepare you for your first design position. In this article I will discuss each skill and its importance in the fashion industry.

Draping and Patternmaking – Low Importance
While patternmaking and draping are valuable skills, they usually only come in handy when you deal with a lot of fits. However, fittings are usually conducted by technical design teams so if you got into fashion for creative reasons, you’ll most likely be miserable in this type of position. On the creative side of design, all you need is a basic understanding of what creates a good fit, and how to fix a bad one. In the majority of design positions, hands-on patternmaking skills are not necessary, unless you plan to enter Project Runway!

Sewing – Low Importance
On the creative side of design, sewing isn’t that relevant. Yes, it’s good to understand the general concepts of garment construction, but you don’t need to be a great seamstress. On the job, if you need to know how a certain garment is constructed, there are tons of references available: from clothes at the stores, to “how to” books and online articles. The point I’m trying to make is: if you’re sewing skills leave something to be desired, don’t stress over it.

Illustration – Almost Unnecessary
Sadly, fashion illustrations are a dying art in the industry – they are scarcely used by designers in the real world. The fashion illustration has been replaced with computer drawn stylized technical sketches (floats) or more accurate technical flats, which are faster to sketch and much more practical. Not only do they present a clear representation of design concept, but they are a must have for production. Flats can be turned into CADs and can be used in mood/presentation boards. Fashion schools have not followed this shift and still focus more heavily on illustrations, and not enough on flat sketching.

Computer Programs – Must Know
I can’t stress enough the importance of knowing popular computer applications for creating floats, flats and CADs. Most companies expect proficiency in Adobe Illustrator, Adobe Photoshop, and Microsoft Excel since they are relatively affordable in comparison to more industry specific software. Unfortunately, the coverage of Illustrator and Photoshop provided by fashion schools does not meet the actual demands of the fashion industry. Many companies are also requesting knowledge of WebPDM, so if your college offers a course in this program, it would be to your benefit to take it. If your school does not teach this program, find a school or venue that does offer this program and take it!

Flat Sketching – Must Know
While interviewing candidates for design positions, we’ve seen applicants’ portfolios filled with beautiful illustrations and then say “That’s nice, but can you flat sketch?” If flats are included in their portfolios, they are usually basic, lack important details, and are not visually appealing. If the candidates sketches are halfway decent; my next question is “do you know Illustrator and Photoshop? ” Almost everyone says yes, but it’s usually far from the truth.

A lot of fashion school grads seriously believe that they know these programs well, but what you learned in school isn’t enough – fashion schools don’t teach these skills well enough for entry level designers to be competent within the fashion industry. Schools just cover basics, which are usually forgotten without practice. Take the extra effort to practice and become comfortable with Adobe Illustrator, Adobe Photoshop and other programs beyond what schools teach: read books and take additional courses (offered in either classroom or online settings).

Creating Specs in a Copycat Industry – Must Know
Knowing how to spec (measure and detail) a garment to create garment specifications, or “specs” is a fundamental skill. Many companies create their spec sheets using Excel. Although garment sizes and measurements vary from company to company, depending on different market segments and categories, if you know the principles, you’ll be able to quickly adapt to the standards of any company. You don’t even need to know how to develop specs from scratch!

As a head designer, to set spec standards for a company, I usually went to different stores, found garments with a good fit and copied the basic measurements. This is quite common – the fashion industry is a copycat industry- most fashions hanging in the stores are knock-offs of another company. Once, during a shopping trip in London, a store salesperson noticed I was a fashion designer collecting style ideas. He mentioned that his store received a constant flow of American design companies such as Calvin Klein, whose designers come to knockoff their merchandise. That’s right – even top designer brands use knockoffs for their ready-to-wear collections. There are even official terms: a “knockoff” is when a style is copied and a “rub-off” is when patterns are copied.

Educate Yourself!
Many fashion schools such as FIT in New York (Fashion Institute of Technology) offer important classes like “flats and specs for the fashion industry”, but believe it or not, these courses are not required by the curriculum! Another handy course that should be taken is “creative fashion presentation.” Salespeople use presentations a lot as visual aids. In addition they create a good impression and convey creativity level. If you can make outstanding presentations you’ll be assigned to do them often, and believe me it’s more fun to make boards than do fits or send faxes and organize showrooms.

To sum up: in order to get a job before the rest of the entry level fashion design candidates, you need to focus on refining skills that are highly demanded in the industry. Become proficient with flat sketching, include flats in your portfolio, and be extremely comfortable and knowledgeable in Illustrator and Photoshop. Not only will you be ready with the skills you need to succeed in fashion, but discussing how you went the extra mile to keep up with industry standards will definitely impress any prospective employer!

For your reference and use, we have posted lots of industry standard flat sketches and CADs in JPEG and vector (Illustrator) formats on DesignersNexus.com. If you can improve your skills to reach the quality of those shown, you’ll be in a very good shape

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Latest Fashion – Know What Is Hot This Season

Fashion might be your passion or your profession might have brought you to the fashion industry. Whatever is the reason for you to get into world of international fashion, it’s essential to find out latest fashion trends from all over the globe. The newbie always thinks that United States is the origin of most of the fashion trends but it is not. Italy or France would win the battle against United States when it comes to latest fashion. Paris fashion show 2011 is perfect example for that in which new trends where quite inspiring and innovative. For more information in latest trends, one can get lot of information from Fashion Magazines, Fashion Blogs, and Fashion week.

One question must be hitting your mind quite often as spring and summer is heading closer. What are latest fashion trends for this spring or summer? Light, bright, and cheerful dressing will be likely and enjoyable approach for this spring that officially arrives in March. To be more innovative, one can use his/her fashion ideas along with latest trends in fashion.

Latest Fashion Trends for This Spring/Summer

  • Androgynous: Classic tailored pants and stylish crisp pants with ‘easy boyfriend jacket’ and sleeves rolled up over shirt are perfect for Androgynous look. For person with heavy middle section, this look is perfect to camouflage that section. This look goes nicely on any place thus gives higher return for investment in latest fashion.
  • Transparent: Do you want to create romantic feminine statement or a sensual seductive one? Transparent items with see-through element in flesh nude tone will be perfect option. Crochet and Lace items or clothing made of fabric that has ability to transform to utterly fresh look in next summer.
  • Minimalist: Simple items made of natural fabric in neutral colors and soft lines are in demand this time around as they were over past few years. Collarless top or unstructured jacket combined with baggy pants and relaxed straight shirt could be perfect outfits for this season. Try this for fresh and uncluttered look.
  • Whites: Your wardrobe will be incomplete without elements of white clothing this season. Starting from head to toe, wear whites to look fresh all the time this summer. You can also use Bold and Fluorescent colored clothing as well along with whites.
  • Stripes: As the case with Paris Fashion Show 2011, Stripes are in demand this year. They are available in all directions, all colors combination, and all bandwidths. To update your look instantly, add one outfit with stripes in your wardrobe.
  • Denim and Baggy pants: To make definitive new style statement, use Denim or Baggy pant for your lower half. You can combine them with ‘Chambray’ shirts, Jeans Jackets, Capri leggings, and list goes on and on.
  • Accessories: Small new trends can made huge difference in your overall look. Bold colored mix, garden flower motifs, stripes, and the transparency trend goes well with light, bright, and trendy clothing. To pull whole new look all together, use pair of sandals as well as ‘Lucite’ bangles.

These latest fashion trends and ideas will certainly give you refreshing new look this season.

Men’s Fashion Styles That Women Absolutely Hate

Men and women have different fashion sense, and that’s the norm of course, but sometimes we need to take a cue from each other. Most men, for example, are known to have lousy taste when it comes to their fashion choices. That’s why they would be able to benefit tremendously from some real tips and advice from women.

There are choices of style and clothing for men that are totally frowned upon by the opposite sex. It would come in handy to know about these fashion violations especially if your aim in trying to be fashionable is to attract females in the first place.

Here are just some men’s fashion styles that women hate:

Socks and Sandals- There is never a good reason to wear socks with sandals. Socks are meant for shoes and closed footwear and sandals are meant for bare feet. Pairing these two together goes against their very nature.

Wearing them makes you look like a fool and women would rightfully think that you have no sense of fashion at all.

Mesh Shirt- Try to think of ways where wearing a mesh shirt can be considered to be hot. If you can think of any situation then that means you have an absolutely horrible fashion sense and that you have been committing equally horrid fashion crimes all your life. Try to rethink your whole idea of fashion.

Fanny Packs- Admittedly, the idea for the fanny pack is quite a good one, especially for a practical fellow who’d like everything handy. It’s kind of like Batman’s Utility Belt. Unfortunately, wearing a fanny pack in reality is a bad idea and could make you look like a total dork.

Skinny Jeans- This is one of the instances where we would see the vast difference between men’s and women’s fashion. Girls wearing skinny jeans is simply hot. The tighter the jeans, the better.

When a guy wears skinny jeans, it never looks right. It especially looks odd when we see the guy struggling to move around since the pants are obviously way too tight for what is considered comfortable.

Short Shorts- Do we have to explain this? Grown men walking around wearing short shorts is not something that we want to see in our normal waking lives. Hairy fat legs is a little but more than we can take.

There is really no situation that would justify that. Even the most intense weather is not good enough.

Logos Everywhere– Some guys are just way too drawn by the power of logos. They wear anything that has a huge logo emblazoned on it. Somehow, that makes them feel trendy and classy

It gets worse when you buy everything from the same brand. Even product endorsers don’t wear everything from the same company.

Sideways Baseball Cap- The wearing of a baseball cap is already questionable when you are not engaged in any sport or any activity that requires you to have sun protection. Wearing it sideways is just the height of being crass. You should never wear it that way.

Fashion Idea – Use Color to Look Better, Healthier & Slimmer Part 1

Psychologists conclude that color can account for 60% of the acceptance or rejection of anything someone sees and this includes the colors you wear.

In fact, the colors you wear can make you instantly look slimmer, healthier and create an image of confidence and much more – Lets find out how you can put this fashion idea into practice.

Color Impact

We react to color before ANYTHING else, and that’s why it’s so critical it’s an instinctive response.

In many instances our responses to color can help us survive.

For example, if see a black small object near your face your not to worried but if it has yellowish stripes you want to get it away. You are warned by color if it’s a bee or a fly and react accordingly.

Colors and what we associate them with

As society has developed it has reinforced our association with certain colors to trigger a response.

Ever wondered why the uniforms of so many authority personnel are black or dark blue?

The reason is that these colors signify power and authority.

Go into a Hospital and you will often see green because of its calming and makes us relax.

Take a road sign, traffic light or warning of late bill you will notice and it contains red.

You know you probably need to be cautious or worried.

Color and you

You can of course can use color to our advantage and here are a few examples.

Consider this simple fact; around 60% of clothes sold in the UK and USA are black.

The reason for this is that black can be used both formally and informally to great effect.

Wearing black formally suggests elegance, strength, authority and power.

If you have to attend a business meeting black is always a great color.

On the other hand never consider wearing red to business meeting, as it can be viewed as over the top, in other people’s faces, and even confrontational.

When worn properly, in any situation, black clothing conveys neatness and simplicity.
Black may be seen as a safe color, but it is extremely effective if worn in the right way, to trigger a positive response.

It also makes you look slimmer

Let’s look at some other examples:

If you want to look slimmer

Go for one color only.

Why?

Because, if you have different colors top and bottom, you will instantly draw attention to the waste area.

If you use more than one color keep them dark.

If you want to look healthier

Consider you hair color and complexion.

If you are pale avoid light colors that give you a washed out look like grey or light green go for darker colors.

On the other hand, if you have dark olive skin, you can use light colors to draw attention to your skin.
If you don’t want to look a mess.

Don’t wear more than three colors and learn how to use a color wheel to match colors to give you a coordinated look.

There are plenty of free color wheels on the net to help you do this and you will soon be matching colors to make you look your best.

Don’t underestimate the impact of color

Many people don’t understand color but learning how colors impact compliment and match is a fashion idea that will always make sure you present a great image for all occasions and look healthier and slimmer at the same time.

We will look at more ideas in further articles in this series.