I admire clothing designers. I have no idea how they have the patience to match seams and the control to do the fine detail work. Even though I understand the technical aspect of how clothes are made, it doesn’t matter. In addition to technical knowledge, skill, imagination and creativity, I utterly lack on essential ingredient and that is patience. I could no more spend hours on a drawing than I could climb Mount Everest. I can however, shoot a photo and even get rid of those white lines as needed to make an alpha cutout for a floor stand. So, typically I assumed that if the alpha displays in a store were poorly done (something I could do) then the clothes would be poorly done as well (something I could not do.)
However, today I was in a store that had clothes based on Chanel designs, clothes made with me in mind. Tweedy, nubby knits, tailored jackets, system skirts, all my fashion loves wrapped up together. The alpha textures displaying the clothing, however, were terrible. But, oh I did want the clothing. So…I put out a plurk question for designers asking if I was wrong to assume bad alpha displays = bad clothing and though there was some belief that what is worth doing is worth doing well (yes!) that in all honesty, my assumption was wrong and that the only way to tell was to buy something. So… I bought the least expensive outfit.
And the edges were perfect! Seams were matched! It was everything I hoped it would be and oh, no, I spent too much money. Here are three of the outfits I picked up – inspired by real life designs and absolutely scrumptious.
How to Avoid Ugly White Edges on Your Alpha Textures: There’s a handy-dandy tutorial by Robin Wood on how to make an alpha channel. The Solidify filter that makes it easy to have nice clean edges is free and can be downloaded from Flaming Pear here. To be honest, there have been stores I have not purchased tempting items from because of bad alpha displays. The only reason I made the purchases today was that I was assured that it did not necessarily mean the clothes were bad. However, no one was going to guarantee they would be good since those kind of problems can mean not caring about details.