I have been doing a lot of sketching recently.  When I first started doing Fashion Illustration, I had zero experience.  But I bought a sketch book, grabbed a pencil and eraser, and started drawing.  As I have continued to draw and draw, I have seen my skills get progressivley better, and I have learned on my own, new techniques to incorporate into my drawings.  

These four sketches I am going to show you are my most recent work. The first three, I free hand sketched the outline and detailing of the clothing, and I then imported the images into my laptop to color the garments in.  I found that coloring them in on my computer gives a more clean finish, and there is a wider variety of colors options.  

The very last sketch though, is the complete raw sketch.  It is the one I am most proud of, and have decided not to color in, in fear of losing the detailing and movement in the dress.  

All sketches belong to me, Amanda Kaplan.  All have been created by me and have been thought-up by my imagination.  All rights reserved to Amanda Kaplan, Brunette with a Budget.  For use of any of these images, please contact me.



It is the time of year any fashionista waits for. It is the time of year when you can slide open your drawers and pull out your blacks, wool, and pants. It is the time of year where fashion is a MUST. It is September.

As I stared at the beautifully packaged in plastic, bible of fashion, I was in awe by the beauty displayed only by the cover: diversity, bold, natural. Joan Small, Cara Delevingne, and Karlie Kloss, runway model extraordinaires. Though their facial expression were soft and fresh, the intensity of their eyebrows and facial structure spoke to me: this edition of Vogue was going to be daring yet crisp.

Though roughly 428 of the pages were ads, there was more to them than just advertisements. I was immediately awestruck by Dolce & Gabbanas futuristic wonderland ad.

Blacks and neutrals have always been a must for the fall, but Dolce & Gabbana are introducing a new pathway towards these dark colors. In several of the outfits on the right, especially the one that Kendall Jenner is wearing, is coated in light capturing beading. These silver specks of luminosity add just the right amount of texture as well as light to what would of normally been an all black outfit. Another aspect of this ad that I found especially captivating was the use of floral in the outfits. Though floral is a well known spring and summer trend, by making the floral prints darker with a lot of texture in the dresses, it allows for a cooler and deeper tone. The details in the background as well tell their own story of happiness (the flowers in the trees) in a place of darkness. 

Cold and dark is a common theme in fall fashion, but this year, Chloe is bringing a new heat to the likely fall ideal.

Fall is all about bundling down and layering up for those chillier days and nights. In this Fall 2014 ad for Chloe, though the scenery is bright and summery, Chloe manages to incorporate fall within their ad. Fur coats paired with dresses adds a touch of summer to the fall attire. By sticking with soft neutrals, Chloe is able to embrace fall fashion without the feeling of cold. This fall, it is not only important to embrace your summer wardrobe, but make it fall appropriate. In addition to the temperature, the usual fall hairdo in past years has been straight locks and tight buns, but Chloe is clutching on to the messy summer strands. Just because fall is right around the corner, it doesn't mean you have to let go of your summer looks. Chloe used a summery backdrop along with summer staples and added heavier pieces such as fur coats in order to create outfits that are not only Vogue ready, but fall ready.

Street style prepsters will fall in love with Kate Spades new Shanghai 2014 Fall collection. The fashion is not only gorgeous, but the way that it was portrayed in the September issue is more than alluring. 

Though the tiger may be stuffed and fake, this image is more fierce than his nonexistent roar. Kate Spades lush red tones adds a new scene to the fall weather. Since sometimes the fall weather calls for jackets and booties, Kate Spade adds a different cold weather flair to her clothing. Instead of throwing on a jacket, the strap width is wider allowing for more coverage-- not something that we see everyday in the fashion world. Along with different strap sizes, the color red infatuates us all, it's a long ways away from the dark neutrals, hopefully helping us get into the fall spirit without feeling too drowsy. 

So though fall is usual a static season in the fashion world, these three designer companies are breaking the rules and starting new fall trends. So take a chance with these new styles and let them inspire you... dare to be different.

XOXO, Amanda

* all photos belong to the designers as well as Vogue magazine *


Though I'm not one for sewing in fear of puncturing my fingers, sketching and creating clothing with a pen and pencil is more up my alley. 

Recently, I purchased a sketch book from The MET Fashion Exhibit in New York City. Though I had never sketched before, I wanted to allow myself to experience more of the fashion world, and take a step on the design aspect of fashion. 

Round No.1: Fun and flirty maxi and chic leather 

LEFT OUTFIT: chiffon black and dark purple maxi with floral and swirl print paired with a black envelope clutch and chunky heeled sandals

RIGHT OUTFIT: white chiffon tank with black lace trim paired with a black leather jacked and silver chain necklaces along with boyfriend jeans with a Celine purse and nude pumps

Round No.2: Fun slips and chic street style

LEFT OUTFIT: olive slip dress paired with a cream knit sweater and a brown belt with grey knee high socks with lace trim and black booties

RIGHT OUTFIT: black asymmetrical leather skirt paired with a simple grey tee shirt and pearl and pendant necklaces with black heeled booties and a black and white clutch

Round No.3: Mod dots and playing with stripes

LEFT OUTFIT: black and white polka dot shift dress with black fur trim paired with leather heeled boots with quilting detail along with a fur trimmed black tube purse

RIGHT OUTFIT: maroon and white striped tee shirt dress with a black simple belt paired with a simple black purse and white knee high socks with black wedge booties

Round No.4: Whimsical night out and sultry dress

LEFT OUTFIT: olive and silver mini dress with swirl detailing (chiffon and silver) with petal detailing (lace and olive) paired along with double chain pearl necklaces with a matching petal clutch and nude ballet style heels

RIGHT OUTFIT: mermaid style gown with tulle bottom, lace stripe detailing, and velvet torso and sleeve paired with simple black heels and a bow style velvet clutch

So never define yourself as one particular aspect in fashion or in any career. Never be afraid to broaden your horizons, you might just surprise yourself.

XOXO, Amanda

All sketches are original and copyright by Amanda Kaplan between the days of July 5th, 2014 and July 22nd, 2014. Sketches may not be copied or used without the permission of Amanda Kaplan.

All sketches are original and copyright by Amanda Kaplan between the days of July 5th, 2014 and July 22nd, 2014. Sketches may not be copied or used without the permission of Amanda Kaplan.