Karan Gupta

Jacket 01

Class of: 2027

Major: Fashion Design BFA

Medium: Fashion Design

Faculty: Heidi Lee

Prompt: I first developed six croquis based on the theme of my Seminar final paper, selected one design, then created a prototype before finally executing the final garment.

My final paper’s topic was leather. I was researching in hopes of figuring out how I really felt about it’s use and origin. As an aspiring designer with an affection for vintage leather, I needed to know as much as possible. My conclusions are frustratingly nuanced; I believe that the leather and animal farming industries are grotesque, immoral, and dangerous. Unfortunately, that doesn’t seem to matter to a great many people, at least not yet. So, for as long as animals continue to be farmed, using as much of the animal as possible follows quite logically. That being said, the quality of life that animals deserve is so much higher than what they receive and we must implement regulation to enforce that. The other facet is the massively destructive impact animal farming and leather tanning have on our environment, which deserves equally heavily enforced regulation. Jacket 01 is made out of pleather, a decision that sits better with my conscience and wallet. The final piece and the entire croquis collection was based on these truths of leather. My six croquis walk together down a runway of blood, with body horror imagery framing them and sacred Sanskrit mantras worshipping cows floating behind them. I wanted to create looks that were exposed and macabre, unorthodox and abrasive. I tried to explore leather’s unique sculptural abilities and range in form. I also wanted to reference historically significant leather garments like chaps and motorcycle jackets. Jacket 01 is but the first of my personal interpretations of the legendary Schott Perfecto, although I personally own and sport an 80s Wilsons variant, and as happy as I am with it, I am brimming with ideas for Jacket 02.