From a short course to a tailoring business
Fashion designer Elisa Borrat has always been passionate about art and design.
Since graduating from London College of Communication in 2020, Elisa has completed three short courses at Central Saint Martins and gone on to launch her own womenswear tailoring brand, Nancaua.
We caught up with Elisa to find out more about her experience on our Patternmaking Experimental And Explorative Approaches Part 1 Short Course and hear about her new business venture.
Are you interested in fashion or tailoring? Take a look at our guide on how to start a career in fashion for some top tips.
Elisa started her career in fashion as footwear designer in Barcelona. “I graduated in Industrial Design and moved to London in 2018 to specialise in fashion design and art direction,” she tells us. Her studies later took her to London College of Communication, where she completed a master’s degree in Art Direction in 2020.
Keen to expand her skills, Elisa took three short courses with a focus on patternmaking and art direction:
Elisa particularly enjoyed her experience on our Patternmaking Experimental And Explorative Approaches Short Course. The course, which takes place over five weeks, is designed to introduce students to the innovative approach to the creative process at Central Saint Martins. Students explore unconventional, versatile and inventive approaches to patternmaking and shape creation.
“I loved the creative freedom when it came to the exercises,” says Elisa, “Jill (course tutor) encouraged us to create almost without thinking about the final result, and then make the design wearable.” This approach was new to Elisa, who enjoyed the creative freedom and found the process inspiring. “I was used to doing it the other way around before,” she explains, “so I really enjoyed designing with a different and more creative mindset.”
Taking a short course allowed Elisa to work at her own pace and practice different techniques alongside her work commitments. The classes took place on Saturdays, which worked well for Elisa. “It really suited me because I was working during the week,” she says, “and it meant I had some time between classes to reflect and practice the things I had learnt.”
For Elisa, the course opened up new creative possibilities. “I learnt how to properly sew curve seams, as well as how to design from the body to the pattern, instead of the conventional way. That changed my approach and allowed for a lot of new possibilities.”
After losing her freelance job during the pandemic, Elisa decided to set up her own business. “I always knew that I wanted to create my own brand to be able to shape the creative direction of a project from scratch, from the design to the communication,” she says.
After two years of hard work, Elisa launched Nancaua, a womenswear tailoring brand which aims to blend slow fashion values and craft with technology and innovation. “Nancaua is set to inspire the woman who wants to dress tastefully off-beat in her everyday life,” says Elisa. “The brand's mission is to create exclusive collections of wearable garments that feel relevant, interesting, and can be passed on to future generations.”
Elisa’s business specialises in suits, which has she has always had a personal interest in. “Suits have always fascinated me in terms of how they can elevate ordinary days by bringing flare and empowerment to every moment,” she says.
Elisa is now working full-time on the business and enjoys sharing her passion for fashion design. “I always knew that I wanted to design fashion,” she tells us, “because I truly believe in its power to influence your perception of yourself and how you present yourself to the world. I wanted to use my work to make people feel the best version of themselves.”
Find out more about Elisa's tailoring business by following Nancaua on Instagram.
Feeling inspired? Read more about how a short course can help you grow your business and expand your skills.
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