Amelia’s Magazine | Zeynep Tosun: London Fashion Week S/S 2014 Preview Interview

Zeynep Tosun S/S 2014 preview by Laura Hickman
Zeynep Tosun S/S 2014 preview by Laura Hickman.

Last season I was blown away by the discovery of Zeynep Tosun, an ambitious Turkish designer with a penchant for beautiful embellishment. This season Zeynep Tosun takes inspiration from the androgyny and sexual freedom of the 1920s for her Hidden collection. Yesterday I caught up with her in the studio to get a sneak peak of what to expect – beautifully illustrated by Laura Hickman.

Zeynep Tosun S/S 2014 preview by Laura Hickman
Zeynep Tosun S/S 2014 preview by Laura Hickman.

I loved your show last season, how did you construct such elaborate pieces, and who does all the handiwork such as embroidery for you?
I have my own atelier in Istanbul which allows me to experiment with intricate and innovative haute couture techniques. All my embroidery is done in-house.

You have had your own brand since 2008, what has been the journey so far?
It’s been a rollercoaster ride…

What did you learn working with the likes of Alberta Ferretti and Dice Kayak?
Working at Ferretti was my first experience after graduating from Istituto di Maragoni in Milan, so it shaped my character and allowed me to hone my skills to haute couture.

This season you’ve been inspired by the 1920s – how have you translated this time period into a modern collection?
The collection denotes concealed sexuality and merges androgynous shapes with allusive femininity.

What kind of materials have you worked with for the new collection?
Luxe stone-washed silk and silk chiffon, S/S 2014 plays on transparency in a muted palette of white, smoke, navy and candy pink.

How easy was it to set up a flagship store in Istanbul and who are your customers?
My success in Istanbul led to the opening of my flagship store in Akmerkez, and the demand from my private clients mean it has grown every season. My next goal is to open stores in London and New York.

What is it like to work in Turkey in the fashion industry: what are the perks and the challenges?
I am well established as a designer in Turkey so I have much support. London is the platform to build the label internationally.

Zeynep Tosun shows on the catwalk at Freemasons’ Hall with Fashion Scout on Saturday 14th September.

Categories ,Akmerkez, ,Alberta Ferretti, ,Dice Kayak, ,Fashion Scout, ,Ferretti, ,Freemasons’ Hall, ,Hidden, ,interview, ,Istanbul, ,Istituto di Maragoni, ,Laura Hickman, ,preview, ,S/S 2014, ,Zeynep Tosun

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Amelia’s Magazine | Zeynep Tosun: London Fashion Week A/W 2013 Catwalk Review

Zeynep Tosun A/W 2013 by Chloe Douglass
Zeynep Tosun A/W 2013 by Chloe Douglass.

There was one designer who made a unanimously good impression on the massed guests of Fashion Scout, and the one who had us all talking was Zeynep Tosun. She’s shown in London before but this was the first catwalk show that I’ve attended and I was very impressed.

zeynep tosun AW 2013-photo by Amelia Gregory
zeynep tosun AW 2013-photo by Amelia Gregory
zeynep tosun AW 2013-photo by Amelia Gregory
zeynep tosun AW 2013-photo by Amelia Gregory
zeynep tosun AW 2013-photo by Amelia Gregory
zeynep tosun AW 2013-photo by Amelia Gregory
Zeynep-Tosun-by-Alexandra-Haddow
Zeynep Tosun A/W 2013 by Alexandra Haddow.

Zeynep Tosun is a graduate of the Istituto di Marangoni in Milan, she has worked at Alberta Ferretti and I was not surprised to discover that she has a flagship store in Istanbul from where she sells her couture pieces: this was an ultra professional show featuring a huge and immaculately conceived collection, styled to perfection. Of particular note were the fabrics and construction: fine tooled leather thigh high cowboy boots, swirling embroideries reminiscent of 70s furnishings, brocade, complex digital prints on velvet and jewelled embellishments galore. There be money behind this ‘ere label.

zeynep tosun AW 2013-photo by Amelia Gregory
zeynep tosun AW 2013-photo by Amelia Gregory
zeynep tosun AW 2013-photo by Amelia Gregory
zeynep tosun AW 2013-photo by Amelia Gregory
zeynep tosun AW 2013-photo by Amelia Gregory
Zeynep Tosun A/W 2013. All photography by Amelia Gregory.

Models wore deep red lips and slicked back centre parted hair, a few loose tendrils curling in front of the ears. This season’s high neckline came as a chin skimming ruff of Tudor proportions, lending the collection an air of primness. Silhouettes from different eras somehow sat well together: boxy jackets and flared pencil skirts from the 80s met brown and gold wide legged trouser suits from the 70s. All this came in a charming colour palette of cream, red, gold and black that was reminiscent of Renaissance paintings.

zeynep tosun AW 2013-photo by Amelia Gregory
zeynep tosun AW 2013-photo by Amelia Gregory
zeynep tosun AW 2013-photo by Amelia Gregory
zeynep tosun AW 2013-photo by Amelia Gregory
zeynep tosun AW 2013-photo by Amelia Gregory
zeynep tosun AW 2013-photo by Amelia Gregory
zeynep tosun AW 2013-photo by Amelia Gregory
zeynep tosun AW 2013-photo by Amelia Gregory
zeynep tosun AW 2013-photo by Amelia Gregory
zeynep tosun AW 2013-photo by Amelia Gregory
zeynep tosun AW 2013-photo by Amelia Gregory
zeynep tosun AW 2013-photo by Amelia Gregory
zeynep tosun AW 2013-photo by Amelia Gregory
zeynep tosun AW 2013-photo by Amelia Gregory
zeynep tosun AW 2013-photo by Amelia Gregory
zeynep tosun AW 2013-photo by Amelia Gregory
zeynep tosun AW 2013-photo by Amelia Gregory
zeynep tosun AW 2013-photo by Amelia Gregory
zeynep tosun AW 2013-photo by Amelia Gregory

With funds to back this impressive talent we should be seeing plenty more of Turkish lass Zeynep Tosun in the seasons to come.

Categories ,70s, ,A/W 2013, ,Alberta Ferretti, ,Alexandra Haddow, ,Chloe Douglass, ,Fashion Scout, ,Istanbul, ,Istituto di Marangoni, ,London Fashion Week, ,Milan, ,Turkish, ,Zeynep Tosun

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Amelia’s Magazine | London Fashion Week S/S 2011 Exhibition Review: Vauxhall Fashion Scout

Bolshie-A-W-2010-Amelias-Magazine-Antonia-Parker-A
Bolshie AKA Baby-Leg Girl, seek abortion by Antonia Parker.

Over at Fashion Scout there is yet another array of amazing new designers to trawl through. As I entered the upstairs room at the Freemasons’ Hall I was greeted by a girl with plastic roast chickens attached to her breasts and fanny. Perfect for Lady Gaga.

Fashion Scout LFW SS2011-Bolshie photo By Amelia Gregory
All photography by Amelia Gregory.

Bolshie
Those chickens, approved that spike-encrusted big-shouldered body suit, the top knot, the headless doll on a chain: something was ringing a very big bell. And it wasn’t the giant gold glittery Big Ben headpiece in the corner. I turned around and went “oh, it’s you!”

Fashion Scout LFW SS2011-Bolshie photo By Amelia Gregory

For it was none other than Baby-Leg Girl. Bolshie is 18 year old Rhiannon Jones, thrown out of her East Yorkshire school at the tender age of 15 years old and now residing in fashion centrale, Shoreditch.

Bolshie-S-S-2011-Antonia-Parker-Amelias-Magazine-A
Bolshie by Antonia Parker.

We noticed her everywhere last season, usually to be found obscuring our view with giant shoulders and hair – little did we realise that this daring and very ambitious fashionista has got her very own label a spot at Fashion Scout. She’s even made it onto the local BBC news. Now there’s two fingers up at her old school eh?

Fashion Scout LFW SS2011-Bolshie photo By Amelia Gregory

The collection is a massive mashup of contemporary culture, full of passionate bravado. Think Mickey Mouse ears on a police helmet, guns, watch-encrusted glittery jackets, a print that appears to feature Coca-Cola baby bottles and of course the odd Baby-Leg adornment. I wonder if she ever reads Super Super? You can see her entire collection here. Keep a beady eye on this one. She’s still only a teenager for gawd’s sake.

Fashion Scout LFW SS2011-Bolshie photo By Amelia Gregory
Fashion Scout LFW SS2011-Bolshie photo By Amelia Gregory
Fashion Scout LFW SS2011-Bolshie photo By Amelia Gregory

James Hock
This is the third season for the ex-accountant from Australia. But that’s about all I know about James Hock, since his website is ridiculously economical with any biographical information. The Unloved is a bold and playful collection of entirely black and red garments, based on an emotional journey. “It is sadness with a flickering of hope but ultimately, it is about the acceptance of fate.” So says the press release. Sheer fabrics are adorned with Swarovski crystals and juxtaposed against huge asymmetrical harlequin shapes cut across pantaloons, mini crinolines, sharp-shouldered capes and hybrid trouser-shorts. Audacious and definitely not for the faint hearted, he is currently stocked in uber trendy shop Machine-A.

James-Hock-by-Lisa-Stannard
James-Hock-by-Lisa-Stannard
James-Hock-by-Lisa-Stannard
James Hock by Lisa Stannard.

Kirsty Ward
Kirsty Ward graduated from Central Saint Martins MA in 2008 since when she has been working with Alberta Ferretti in Italy. S/S 2011 saw the launch of her own label at Fashion Scout but I remember well how astonished I was by her jewellery for David Longshaw last season. Her own collection features amazing sculptural creations that echo the lines of the body in sheer pastel panels shaped with exaggerated wire and piping. Many pieces have integral jewellery or are meant to be worn with her huge wire and crystal bead necklaces in shades of pale peach and mint green.

Fashion Scout Kirsty Ward photo by Amelia Gregory
Fashion Scout Kirsty Ward photo by Amelia Gregory

She was wearing an earring necklace when I met her: dangling earrings that connect under the chin. I’d personally be incredibly worried about pulling my earlobes off if I wore this creation, but she rocked the look with admirable confidence. I think a bit of upcycling could definitely fit into her aesthetic and I did nonchalantly suggest that she could use some old wire coat hangers… Definitely a new designer to keep a firm eye on.

felice perkins kirsty ward
felice perkins kirsty ward
felice perkins kirsty ward
Kirsty Ward by Felice Perkins.

Yong
Special mention goes to Yong, who studied at Edinburgh College of Art and Design before passing through the hallowed years of an MA at Central Saint Martins. He makes clever and elegant dresses, advised by my old friend Jason Leung.

Fashion Scout LFW SS2011- Jason Leung photo By Amelia Gregory
Jason Leung.

I particularly liked the royal blue dress with amazing white ruffled embroidery, but I think I need to see more of these dresses worn to really appreciate them. In fact I’d like to see all of these designers on the catwalk. Here’s hoping…

Fashion Scout LFW SS2011- Jason Leung photo By Amelia Gregory

Categories ,Alberta Ferretti, ,Antonia Parker, ,Baby-leg girl, ,Bolshie, ,Central Saint Martins, ,Fashion Scout, ,Felice Perkins, ,Freemasons’ Hall, ,James Hock, ,Jason Leung, ,Kirsty Ward, ,Lady Gaga, ,Lisa Stannard, ,Machine-A, ,Rhiannon Jones, ,Super Super, ,Vauxhall Fashion Scout, ,Yong

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Amelia’s Magazine | London Fashion Week S/S 2011 Exhibition Review: Vauxhall Fashion Scout

Bolshie-A-W-2010-Amelias-Magazine-Antonia-Parker-A
Bolshie AKA Baby-Leg Girl, seek abortion by Antonia Parker.

Over at Fashion Scout there is yet another array of amazing new designers to trawl through. As I entered the upstairs room at the Freemasons’ Hall I was greeted by a girl with plastic roast chickens attached to her breasts and fanny. Perfect for Lady Gaga.

Fashion Scout LFW SS2011-Bolshie photo By Amelia Gregory
All photography by Amelia Gregory.

Bolshie
Those chickens, approved that spike-encrusted big-shouldered body suit, the top knot, the headless doll on a chain: something was ringing a very big bell. And it wasn’t the giant gold glittery Big Ben headpiece in the corner. I turned around and went “oh, it’s you!”

Fashion Scout LFW SS2011-Bolshie photo By Amelia Gregory

For it was none other than Baby-Leg Girl. Bolshie is 18 year old Rhiannon Jones, thrown out of her East Yorkshire school at the tender age of 15 years old and now residing in fashion centrale, Shoreditch.

Bolshie-S-S-2011-Antonia-Parker-Amelias-Magazine-A
Bolshie by Antonia Parker.

We noticed her everywhere last season, usually to be found obscuring our view with giant shoulders and hair – little did we realise that this daring and very ambitious fashionista has got her very own label a spot at Fashion Scout. She’s even made it onto the local BBC news. Now there’s two fingers up at her old school eh?

Fashion Scout LFW SS2011-Bolshie photo By Amelia Gregory

The collection is a massive mashup of contemporary culture, full of passionate bravado. Think Mickey Mouse ears on a police helmet, guns, watch-encrusted glittery jackets, a print that appears to feature Coca-Cola baby bottles and of course the odd Baby-Leg adornment. I wonder if she ever reads Super Super? You can see her entire collection here. Keep a beady eye on this one. She’s still only a teenager for gawd’s sake.

Fashion Scout LFW SS2011-Bolshie photo By Amelia Gregory
Fashion Scout LFW SS2011-Bolshie photo By Amelia Gregory
Fashion Scout LFW SS2011-Bolshie photo By Amelia Gregory

James Hock
This is the third season for the ex-accountant from Australia. But that’s about all I know about James Hock, since his website is ridiculously economical with any biographical information. The Unloved is a bold and playful collection of entirely black and red garments, based on an emotional journey. “It is sadness with a flickering of hope but ultimately, it is about the acceptance of fate.” So says the press release. Sheer fabrics are adorned with Swarovski crystals and juxtaposed against huge asymmetrical harlequin shapes cut across pantaloons, mini crinolines, sharp-shouldered capes and hybrid trouser-shorts. Audacious and definitely not for the faint hearted, he is currently stocked in uber trendy shop Machine-A.

James-Hock-by-Lisa-Stannard
James-Hock-by-Lisa-Stannard
James-Hock-by-Lisa-Stannard
James Hock by Lisa Stannard.

Kirsty Ward
Kirsty Ward graduated from Central Saint Martins MA in 2008 since when she has been working with Alberta Ferretti in Italy. S/S 2011 saw the launch of her own label at Fashion Scout but I remember well how astonished I was by her jewellery for David Longshaw last season. Her own collection features amazing sculptural creations that echo the lines of the body in sheer pastel panels shaped with exaggerated wire and piping. Many pieces have integral jewellery or are meant to be worn with her huge wire and crystal bead necklaces in shades of pale peach and mint green.

Fashion Scout Kirsty Ward photo by Amelia Gregory
Fashion Scout Kirsty Ward photo by Amelia Gregory

She was wearing an earring necklace when I met her: dangling earrings that connect under the chin. I’d personally be incredibly worried about pulling my earlobes off if I wore this creation, but she rocked the look with admirable confidence. I think a bit of upcycling could definitely fit into her aesthetic and I did nonchalantly suggest that she could use some old wire coat hangers… Definitely a new designer to keep a firm eye on.

felice perkins kirsty ward
felice perkins kirsty ward
felice perkins kirsty ward
Kirsty Ward by Felice Perkins.

Yong
Special mention goes to Yong, who studied at Edinburgh College of Art and Design before passing through the hallowed years of an MA at Central Saint Martins. He makes clever and elegant dresses, advised by my old friend Jason Leung.

Fashion Scout LFW SS2011- Jason Leung photo By Amelia Gregory
Jason Leung.

I particularly liked the royal blue dress with amazing white ruffled embroidery, but I think I need to see more of these dresses worn to really appreciate them. In fact I’d like to see all of these designers on the catwalk. Here’s hoping…

Fashion Scout LFW SS2011- Jason Leung photo By Amelia Gregory

Categories ,Alberta Ferretti, ,Antonia Parker, ,Baby-leg girl, ,Bolshie, ,Central Saint Martins, ,Fashion Scout, ,Felice Perkins, ,Freemasons’ Hall, ,James Hock, ,Jason Leung, ,Kirsty Ward, ,Lady Gaga, ,Lisa Stannard, ,Machine-A, ,Rhiannon Jones, ,Super Super, ,Vauxhall Fashion Scout, ,Yong

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Amelia’s Magazine | Graduate Fashion Week 2010: The Gala Show Finale!


Shinsuke Mitsuoka

The world of fashion is notoriously fickle and grabbing the attentions of a fashion crowd for any extended period of time seems tricky. Catwalk shows do their best with an array of light shows and thumping soundtracks which could sometimes do with a warning.

Nottingham Trent have prepared it all for their outing at Graduate Fashion Week with glossy door staff, medications designer goody bags and even a rather trendy loitering DJ (wearing a somewhat dubious puffa jacket). They’re raring to go, remedy but there’s just one cog in the works; a serious lack of bums on seats. Well, there is of course the age old excuse of being fashionably late, but even the pinched smiles of women ferrying around have started to crumble.

All becomes clear as a dull thudding bass infiltrates the theatre and the sound barrier takes a bashing as the trill of hundreds of screaming girls hit the roof. Apparently Tinie Tempah is a big deal (and from the glimpse I got, genuinely teeny Tinie). He’s had all of one song, which luckily for Nottingham Trent, he dispatches quickly, and soon a bustle of activity swells at the theatre doors. If Tinie didn’t make them ‘Pass Out’ (see what I did there? Here all week folks…) then the efforts of Nottingham Trent’s 2010 graduates will surely do their best to stun the senses. 

Nottingham Trent has a clear passion for encouraging students to experiment with unique techniques and textures in knitwear, producing a modern and varied aesthetic across the course. Their catwalk show oscillates between detailed, intricate knitwear and sleek takes on womenswear with bursts of energy injected at intervals by the likes of Emma Dick, showcasing sharp, graphic prints of televisions and arrows just at home in a museum of Pop Art as the runway. Integrated hoods give the look a futuristic feel but there’s a touch of the retro about her two-tone body con jumpsuit with a classic 1960s palette contrast between red and black.

Nottingham Trent keeps the volume turned up with Claire Hartley’s cutaway knitted one pieces, exposing flashes of green, yellow and red for a futuristic sci-fi look. Hartley’s dedication to forward thinking stretches beyond the aesthetics as she hopes to generate a new innovative, zero waste policy in manufacturing to ensure the sustainability and evolution of the clothes. 

By now Tinie’s long forgotten as each model stalks down the catwalk to puffa DJ’s painfully hip soundtrack. Nikki Lowe dazzles with gold lamé suits complete with built-in gloves worthy of an evil Jackie Collins penned character, but flashlight necklaces add a distinctive disco feel caught somewhere between the 1970s and the 1990s.

Miranda Boucher’s collection is a dark and luxurious celebration of femininity with plush midnight blue coats and velveteen details just obscuring the model’s modesty.  

Emma Philpot’s knitwear seems to grow from the models bodies, twisting and turning upon itself and forming knots and twists likes a chunky chainmail, while Tiffany Williams continues the fairytale edge with her menswear collection in dark, brooding colours and heavy volume that weigh on the shoulders as a hulking, masculine presence. Backs reveal shimmers of gold thread intertwined, adding a lighter side to the depth of her work. 
Jenna Harvey’s dresses change at every turn as each layer of tiny fabric is double printed and loosely set so as it moves a new picture is revealed. At times it feels like 3D glasses are needed just to keep up with the transformation before your eyes.

Meanwhile, Phoebe Thirlwall’s beautiful knitwear dresses, inspired by the intricacies of the skin, show a level of workmanship that is breathtaking under the lights of the catwalk. Each ribbed layer clings to the models with hundreds of different levels working together. Her hard work has clearly not gone unnoticed as her work was also photographed by renowned artist Rankin, a stunning portrait duly displayed in grand terms at Earl’s Court.


 
Izabela Targosz’s equestrian turn on tailoring injects some more colour into Nottingham Trent’s show, with jackets made with horsehair pockets and backs adding a silky but quirky feel. Riding hats are the natural yet perfect accessory to a collection that shows an equal strength in its attention to detail for an upheaval of the British tailored look. 

Shinsuke Matsuoka’s work is saved for the final spot and with the breathtaking effect of the garments, it’s easy to see why. Bondage style zips snake across panels of black hi-shine material; the sound of the clothes are a foreboding presence in themselves, but as six outfits stand together the models are transformed into an unnervingly attractive chain gang from the future. I’m not sure if it was this effect or not, but my camera also spluttered its final breaths at this point, perhaps overwhelmed by the power of Matsuoka’s collection.

In any case, it proved a spectacular way to end things and is not something I can imagine being trumped by Tinie any day soon.

Images courtesy of catwalking.com


Nicola Roberts, cheapest illustrated by Jenny Robins

So it was time to wrap up what was a pretty crazy week in the form of the Graduate Fashion Week Gala Show. After making arrangements for a ticket a while ago, I was bemused to find that at the door there was no sign of said tickets.

Perhaps it had been taken by another contributor? Unlikely. ‘Are you sure you’re supposed to be at this (star-studded) show?’ ‘Yes’ I said, ‘that’s why I’m wearing a bow tie’.

After a few quick radio calls, I was allowed in. Into Earl’s Court, that is – not into the champagne drinks reception. ‘Sponsors only’ was the reply when I asked if I could have a quick drinkie. ‘Sponsors only my eye’ I thought, as I recognised half the people in the fashionably-roped off bar area.

So I waited patiently at the entrance to the theatre. And waited.

And waited.

‘We’ll get you in,’ I was told. ‘Before it actually starts?’ I thought to myself.

As I waited I was entertained by a lovely student called April who could see my blood boiling – stood a little distance away to avoid the steam coming out of my ears. ‘After all I’ve bloody done this week,’ I thought to myself, and then said aloud to April, who quickly excused herself.

Finally I was allowed inside and ushered into a press seat, and, true to form at these events, there were three seats either side of me that remained empty. ‘Typical!’ I thought to myself, and then thought I really should stop thinking to myself so much.

With a few whoops and a whizz, the Gala Show kicked off in fabulous fashion, with Britain’s Got Talent champions Diversity. Fun. Next, Caryn Franklin, resplendent as ever, arrived on stage. It was a whistle-stop tour through the non-catwalk-based awards, including those for fashion marketing and promotion. I was pleased to see Northumbria added a few more to their metaphorical mantelpiece.

A host of celebs had turned up, and from my seat I could spot front-row regular Erin O’Connor (who later presented an award), Nicola Roberts of Girls Aloud fame (who has quickly swapped pop for paps, Fashion Week regular that she is). I even brushed past her on my way to the loo, and she is genuinely gorgeous in real life.


Another Nicola Roberts, illustrated by Antonia Parker

It’s always great to see the wonderful Hilary Alexander (who I had the pleasure of sitting next to at the Northumbria Show) who presented mature student Ellen Devall with the ‘First Word’ Journalism Award, because it left her ‘wanting to know more.’


Hilary Alexander, illustrated by Amy Martino

Another of my favourite spots was Barbara Hulanicki, who was here to present the Textile Award to Natalie Murray from Northumbria University. She’s utterly bonkers but gosh what a woman.


Barbara Hulanicki, illustrated by Abi Daker

Onto the main event – the Gala Show(case). I was thrilled to see many of the graduates we’d already talked about on the website appearing in this Best of the Best-style show, including Naomi New from Northumbria (one of my personal favourites from GFW as a whole) and Northbrook’s Rhea Fields.

The staging for this was incredible, and justified the ghastly white sheet that hung in the background for the first part of the show. It burst down to reveal a scaffolding set, where models pouted, lights flashed, and the music roared.

So, the winners then. With the inclusion of the International Show this year, it was great to see them honoured with an award, which must have been a great end to a fantastic week for International Students. The winner, Roya Hesam from the Amsterdam Fashion Institute won over the judges with her minimalist collection.

Pretty soon afterwards, out popped everybody’s favourite glamorous granny, Zandra Rhodes, to present her Textiles Award.


Zandra Rhodes, illustrated by Paul Shinn

The competition was fierce here – all were fantastic – but it was Anna Lee’s literally fierce collection of big cat prints that triumphed.

Dylan Jones, editor of GQ Magazine, presented Thomas Crisp of Ravensbourne with the marvellous Menswear prize, owing to his sleek, sophisticated tailoring.


Dylan Jones, illustrated by June Chanpoomidole

Rhea Fields (yay!) from Northbrook college won the womenswear award for her covetable collection and unique use of materials, presented by Mark Eley of Eley Kishimoto.


Mark Eley, illustrated by Lisa Billvik

So, the moment we’d all waited for (and in my case queued, sweated and been reduced to tears for) was the River Island Gold Award. God knows how the likes of River Island design director Naomi Dominique, Lorraine Candy of Elle and Kim Jones chose the winner, but it was down to fellow judge Alberta Ferretti to present the award.


Alberta Ferretti, illustrated by Paolo Caravello

And the winner was…

…Rebecca Thompson from Manchester Met! Thoroughly deserved for her inspirational collection. Alberta Ferretti proclaimed that Rebecca had triumphed because of her ‘unusual and interesting combination of fabrics and for the contemporary feeling of her collection’.

As the ticker tape covered Rebecca and her models, I thought to myself,’What a freakin’ fabulous week.’

Categories ,Alberta Ferretti, ,Amsterdam Fashion Institute, ,Anna Lee, ,Awards, ,Big cats, ,Britain’s Got Talent, ,Caryn Franklin, ,Diversity, ,Dylan Jones, ,Earls Court, ,Elle Magazine, ,Erin O’ Connor, ,Fashion Week, ,Gala Show, ,GFW, ,girls aloud, ,Gold Award, ,Graduate Fashion Week 2010, ,International Show, ,Kim Jones, ,london, ,Lorraine Candy, ,Manchester Metropolitan University, ,menswear, ,models, ,Naomi Dominique, ,Naomi New, ,Nicola Roberts, ,Northbrook College, ,Northumbria, ,Rebecca Thompson, ,Rhea Fields, ,River Island, ,Roya Hesam, ,Textiles Award, ,Ticker Tape, ,Womenswear, ,Zandra Rhodes

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Amelia’s Magazine | Graduate Fashion Week 2010: The Gala Show Finale!


Shinsuke Mitsuoka

The world of fashion is notoriously fickle and grabbing the attentions of a fashion crowd for any extended period of time seems tricky. Catwalk shows do their best with an array of light shows and thumping soundtracks which could sometimes do with a warning.

Nottingham Trent have prepared it all for their outing at Graduate Fashion Week with glossy door staff, medications designer goody bags and even a rather trendy loitering DJ (wearing a somewhat dubious puffa jacket). They’re raring to go, remedy but there’s just one cog in the works; a serious lack of bums on seats. Well, there is of course the age old excuse of being fashionably late, but even the pinched smiles of women ferrying around have started to crumble.

All becomes clear as a dull thudding bass infiltrates the theatre and the sound barrier takes a bashing as the trill of hundreds of screaming girls hit the roof. Apparently Tinie Tempah is a big deal (and from the glimpse I got, genuinely teeny Tinie). He’s had all of one song, which luckily for Nottingham Trent, he dispatches quickly, and soon a bustle of activity swells at the theatre doors. If Tinie didn’t make them ‘Pass Out’ (see what I did there? Here all week folks…) then the efforts of Nottingham Trent’s 2010 graduates will surely do their best to stun the senses. 

Nottingham Trent has a clear passion for encouraging students to experiment with unique techniques and textures in knitwear, producing a modern and varied aesthetic across the course. Their catwalk show oscillates between detailed, intricate knitwear and sleek takes on womenswear with bursts of energy injected at intervals by the likes of Emma Dick, showcasing sharp, graphic prints of televisions and arrows just at home in a museum of Pop Art as the runway. Integrated hoods give the look a futuristic feel but there’s a touch of the retro about her two-tone body con jumpsuit with a classic 1960s palette contrast between red and black.

Nottingham Trent keeps the volume turned up with Claire Hartley’s cutaway knitted one pieces, exposing flashes of green, yellow and red for a futuristic sci-fi look. Hartley’s dedication to forward thinking stretches beyond the aesthetics as she hopes to generate a new innovative, zero waste policy in manufacturing to ensure the sustainability and evolution of the clothes. 

By now Tinie’s long forgotten as each model stalks down the catwalk to puffa DJ’s painfully hip soundtrack. Nikki Lowe dazzles with gold lamé suits complete with built-in gloves worthy of an evil Jackie Collins penned character, but flashlight necklaces add a distinctive disco feel caught somewhere between the 1970s and the 1990s.

Miranda Boucher’s collection is a dark and luxurious celebration of femininity with plush midnight blue coats and velveteen details just obscuring the model’s modesty.  

Emma Philpot’s knitwear seems to grow from the models bodies, twisting and turning upon itself and forming knots and twists likes a chunky chainmail, while Tiffany Williams continues the fairytale edge with her menswear collection in dark, brooding colours and heavy volume that weigh on the shoulders as a hulking, masculine presence. Backs reveal shimmers of gold thread intertwined, adding a lighter side to the depth of her work. 
Jenna Harvey’s dresses change at every turn as each layer of tiny fabric is double printed and loosely set so as it moves a new picture is revealed. At times it feels like 3D glasses are needed just to keep up with the transformation before your eyes.

Meanwhile, Phoebe Thirlwall’s beautiful knitwear dresses, inspired by the intricacies of the skin, show a level of workmanship that is breathtaking under the lights of the catwalk. Each ribbed layer clings to the models with hundreds of different levels working together. Her hard work has clearly not gone unnoticed as her work was also photographed by renowned artist Rankin, a stunning portrait duly displayed in grand terms at Earl’s Court.


 
Izabela Targosz’s equestrian turn on tailoring injects some more colour into Nottingham Trent’s show, with jackets made with horsehair pockets and backs adding a silky but quirky feel. Riding hats are the natural yet perfect accessory to a collection that shows an equal strength in its attention to detail for an upheaval of the British tailored look. 

Shinsuke Matsuoka’s work is saved for the final spot and with the breathtaking effect of the garments, it’s easy to see why. Bondage style zips snake across panels of black hi-shine material; the sound of the clothes are a foreboding presence in themselves, but as six outfits stand together the models are transformed into an unnervingly attractive chain gang from the future. I’m not sure if it was this effect or not, but my camera also spluttered its final breaths at this point, perhaps overwhelmed by the power of Matsuoka’s collection.

In any case, it proved a spectacular way to end things and is not something I can imagine being trumped by Tinie any day soon.

Images courtesy of catwalking.com


Nicola Roberts, cheapest illustrated by Jenny Robins

So it was time to wrap up what was a pretty crazy week in the form of the Graduate Fashion Week Gala Show. After making arrangements for a ticket a while ago, I was bemused to find that at the door there was no sign of said tickets.

Perhaps it had been taken by another contributor? Unlikely. ‘Are you sure you’re supposed to be at this (star-studded) show?’ ‘Yes’ I said, ‘that’s why I’m wearing a bow tie’.

After a few quick radio calls, I was allowed in. Into Earl’s Court, that is – not into the champagne drinks reception. ‘Sponsors only’ was the reply when I asked if I could have a quick drinkie. ‘Sponsors only my eye’ I thought, as I recognised half the people in the fashionably-roped off bar area.

So I waited patiently at the entrance to the theatre. And waited.

And waited.

‘We’ll get you in,’ I was told. ‘Before it actually starts?’ I thought to myself.

As I waited I was entertained by a lovely student called April who could see my blood boiling – stood a little distance away to avoid the steam coming out of my ears. ‘After all I’ve bloody done this week,’ I thought to myself, and then said aloud to April, who quickly excused herself.

Finally I was allowed inside and ushered into a press seat, and, true to form at these events, there were three seats either side of me that remained empty. ‘Typical!’ I thought to myself, and then thought I really should stop thinking to myself so much.

With a few whoops and a whizz, the Gala Show kicked off in fabulous fashion, with Britain’s Got Talent champions Diversity. Fun. Next, Caryn Franklin, resplendent as ever, arrived on stage. It was a whistle-stop tour through the non-catwalk-based awards, including those for fashion marketing and promotion. I was pleased to see Northumbria added a few more to their metaphorical mantelpiece.

A host of celebs had turned up, and from my seat I could spot front-row regular Erin O’Connor (who later presented an award), Nicola Roberts of Girls Aloud fame (who has quickly swapped pop for paps, Fashion Week regular that she is). I even brushed past her on my way to the loo, and she is genuinely gorgeous in real life.


Another Nicola Roberts, illustrated by Antonia Parker

It’s always great to see the wonderful Hilary Alexander (who I had the pleasure of sitting next to at the Northumbria Show) who presented mature student Ellen Devall with the ‘First Word’ Journalism Award, because it left her ‘wanting to know more.’


Hilary Alexander, illustrated by Amy Martino

Another of my favourite spots was Barbara Hulanicki, who was here to present the Textile Award to Natalie Murray from Northumbria University. She’s utterly bonkers but gosh what a woman.


Barbara Hulanicki, illustrated by Abi Daker

Onto the main event – the Gala Show(case). I was thrilled to see many of the graduates we’d already talked about on the website appearing in this Best of the Best-style show, including Naomi New from Northumbria (one of my personal favourites from GFW as a whole) and Northbrook’s Rhea Fields.

The staging for this was incredible, and justified the ghastly white sheet that hung in the background for the first part of the show. It burst down to reveal a scaffolding set, where models pouted, lights flashed, and the music roared.

So, the winners then. With the inclusion of the International Show this year, it was great to see them honoured with an award, which must have been a great end to a fantastic week for International Students. The winner, Roya Hesam from the Amsterdam Fashion Institute won over the judges with her minimalist collection.

Pretty soon afterwards, out popped everybody’s favourite glamorous granny, Zandra Rhodes, to present her Textiles Award.


Zandra Rhodes, illustrated by Paul Shinn

The competition was fierce here – all were fantastic – but it was Anna Lee’s literally fierce collection of big cat prints that triumphed.

Dylan Jones, editor of GQ Magazine, presented Thomas Crisp of Ravensbourne with the marvellous Menswear prize, owing to his sleek, sophisticated tailoring.


Dylan Jones, illustrated by June Chanpoomidole

Rhea Fields (yay!) from Northbrook college won the womenswear award for her covetable collection and unique use of materials, presented by Mark Eley of Eley Kishimoto.


Mark Eley, illustrated by Lisa Billvik

So, the moment we’d all waited for (and in my case queued, sweated and been reduced to tears for) was the River Island Gold Award. God knows how the likes of River Island design director Naomi Dominique, Lorraine Candy of Elle and Kim Jones chose the winner, but it was down to fellow judge Alberta Ferretti to present the award.


Alberta Ferretti, illustrated by Paolo Caravello

And the winner was…

…Rebecca Thompson from Manchester Met! Thoroughly deserved for her inspirational collection. Alberta Ferretti proclaimed that Rebecca had triumphed because of her ‘unusual and interesting combination of fabrics and for the contemporary feeling of her collection’.

As the ticker tape covered Rebecca and her models, I thought to myself,’What a freakin’ fabulous week.’

Categories ,Alberta Ferretti, ,Amsterdam Fashion Institute, ,Anna Lee, ,Awards, ,Big cats, ,Britain’s Got Talent, ,Caryn Franklin, ,Diversity, ,Dylan Jones, ,Earls Court, ,Elle Magazine, ,Erin O’ Connor, ,Fashion Week, ,Gala Show, ,GFW, ,girls aloud, ,Gold Award, ,Graduate Fashion Week 2010, ,International Show, ,Kim Jones, ,london, ,Lorraine Candy, ,Manchester Metropolitan University, ,menswear, ,models, ,Naomi Dominique, ,Naomi New, ,Nicola Roberts, ,Northbrook College, ,Northumbria, ,Rebecca Thompson, ,Rhea Fields, ,River Island, ,Roya Hesam, ,Textiles Award, ,Ticker Tape, ,Womenswear, ,Zandra Rhodes

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Amelia’s Magazine | Corinne Day 1965 – 2010


ADZ, capsule drug illustrated by Jess Stokes

Whilst eco-couture has always been ahead of the times in terms of sustainability, click it’s often been left behind in the style stakes, unable to compete with mainstream, high fashion. Gradually though, a new breed of designer has emerged who is equally concerned with creating a cutting edge aesthetic as they are utilising sustainable and organic materials.

At the forefront of this movement is Ada Zanditon, whose designs experiment with shape and texture in a way that is unsurprising once you learn that she originally interned with Alexander McQueen and Gareth Pugh. After establishing her own eco-luxury womenswear line in March 2008, Ada has gone on to raise awareness of everything from eco fashion to politics through the likes of the Think Act Vote campaign. Ada took the time to answer a few questions for us about the inspiration behind her new range ADZ, and the future of eco fashion. ? 


ADZ S/S 2011

You’ve really established yourself as a pioneer of eco-fashion, giving the movement a younger, sexier image than it had in the past. How did you go about this?  
I think that I had two very strong passions that I was determined to make work together – fashion and sustainability. I enjoy the innovative aspect that comes into every part of the process, my main how-to part of it I think comes from a basic viewpoint that anything is possible. It’s equally possible to make a beautiful fashionable dress from an ecological material as it is from one that is not. It’s equally possible to create fashion that considers its full life span and even decay as it is to create something that does not. It’s a question of awareness, choice and aesthetics. 

Tell us about your new collection, ADZ?  
ADZ by Ada Zanditon is the bridging line to my main collection, it’s contemporary, resort urban wear that combines strikingly unique prints with casual yet sophisticated pieces that are focussed around bold geometric detailing in fluid soft fabrics such as tencel, silk jersey and chiffon. The SS 2011 debut collection of ADZ is titled Nebulayan. My inspiration came from creating illustrations of satellite images of the Himalayas mountain range which I then layered with Hubble telescope imagery of deep space nebulae. We now have achieved the technology to see the Earth from space and also to see deep into outer space. I like the idea of contrasting these perspectives with each other. 


ADZ, illustrated by Aniela Murphy

How do you cope with the volume of work and your nerves in the build up to London Fashion Week? Any trade secrets?
I am always aware that I am so fortunate to be in the position to be running my own label, I don’t really want to complain. Everyday always has its challenges, but I try to see that as opportunity. I think gratitude is vastly underrated these days…. don’t you? 

Absolutely! Amelia’s magazine have always been a big fan of your illustrations, any plans to design your own prints based on your work?
Actually, all my prints are based on my illustration work and photography and as well as that I use watercolour then layer all these elements together. ? 


ADZ, illustrated by Natsuki Otani

Musician Viktoria Modesta is your muse; how did you end up working together? You’ll be contributing to her showcase next month; what will that involve?
Soon after we first met we found we had a good creative rapport. I think Viktoria has incredible elegance and style with a real sense of grace. As for the showcase – I don’t want to give to much away but it will be a great evening. 

How do you think the public can be convinced of the importance of sustainability? Do you think there is more designers, magazine editors and celebrities could be doing to highlight its significance?
I only think the planet can truly convince people of the importance of sustainability. I’m sure most people living on the coast of Bangladesh are highly convinced that we need to live in a more sustainable way as they are effected daily by climate change. However, I think that people can encourage and inspire, and have a really good try at convincing. What worries me, though, is that catastrophic events only really shake people into action. I think everyone in every walk of life can do more, no matter what you do.

To see the entire ADZ S/S 2011 collection, visit Ada’s website.
To read more about Think Act Vote, see our interview with Amisha Ghadiali here.

Corrine Day pictured in 1996

The fashion world is in mourning over the loss of another of its brightest stars. Corinne Day, decease the fashion photographer known for shooting Kate Moss at the beginning of her career, information pills has died aged 45.

Her documentary-style photography shook up the fashion world in the nineties, mind at a time when the industry was looking for an antidote to the gloss and glamour of the eighties.  

Born in Ickenham, west London, Day she was raised by her grandmother (her mother, she said, ran a brothel, and her father was not in the picture), and after failing school, worked as a courier. A chance meeting with a photographer led to a short-lived modeling career – Corinne knew she was no cover girl – but through it she met her lifetime partner Mark Szaszy, who taught her how to use a camera.  

It was behind the lens that Corinne shone, and whilst modeling in Milan, she started snapping ‘what she knew’ – her friends – teenage models, hanging around cramped, dingy flats, dressed in charity shop finds.  

This was before the age of street style or fashion bloggers, where anyone with a camera and a passport could jet set around the world, snapping chic from the sidewalks. Her subversive shots caught the eye of Phil Bicker, then art director of The Face, who commissioned a shoot that was to become the stuff of fashion legend.  

The story of Corinne and Kate is well-documented. Day saw promise in a polaroid of the wannabe model, just 16. The ‘3rd Summer of Love’ in July 1990, saw Kate frolicking on a beach in Camber Sands, dressed in a mismatch of high-end designer and cheap market finds. The shoot caused a sensation. The two became firm friends, sharing a flat for three years – this closeness was something Corinne shared with many of her subjects, enabling her to capture them at their most natural.  

Shoots for Vogue followed – (Day was the first to shoot Kate for one of her countless Vogue covers) with Corinne teaming up the stylist Melanie Ward to create the now infamous ‘waif’ look. Her ‘Underexposed’ sequence saw Kate Moss languishing in a bedsit festooned with fairy lights, skinny in saggy tights, creating outrage in the national press for encouraging anorexia and heroin use.  

But nothing could stop Day’s rise to stardom. Her stark, fearlessly honest photographs welcomed in a new mood suited to a country recovering from a recession.  
After a decade of supermodels with their Amazonian bodies and diva demands, Day’s idea of perfection was imperfection. She hated retouching photographs, and favoured quirky models with only traces of makeup, exposed to natural light. Her shots of street kids in second-hand clothes summed up the anti-glamour aesthetic of Generation X. It was an answer to Seattle’s grunge movement – but uniquely British, and effortlessly cool.   

Influenced by the work of documentary artists like Nan Goldin, she sought to capture people’s “most intimate moments”, when “we’re not having such a good time”. This extended to her own life, when she was diagnosed with a brain tumour in 1996, and asked her partner to photograph her battling with the illness. The result was published as ‘Diary’ in 2001.  

After recovering from her first bout of illness, Corinne continued to shoot for fashion magazines, as well as documenting her own friends and family. Her work was commissioned by the National Portrait Gallery, exhibited everywhere from the V&A to the Saatchi, and even the subject of a BBC Four documentary.  

Corinne will always be known as the girl who kick-started heroin chic, but her legacy will be something greater. Writing in The Telegraph, stylist Belinda White commented how, growing up as a working class girl, she “had no business” looking at Vogue and “couldn’t relate” to the stories on the magazine pages. The Kate Moss shoot made her “stop in her tracks” and realize that for the first time, normal girls ‘like her’ could be a part of this world.  

Corinne Day’s photographs democratized fashion, and made it ‘real’ and relevant to a girl on the street. Only under her guise could Kate Moss, a short, flat-chested girl from Croydon, rise up the echelons of the fashion world.  

All images © Corinne Day

Categories ,3rd Summer of Love, ,Amazonian, ,Britain, ,Camber Sands, ,corinne day, ,Croydon, ,fashion, ,Generation X, ,grunge, ,Ickenham, ,Kate Moss, ,london, ,Mark Szaszy, ,Melanie Ward, ,Milan, ,Nan Goldin, ,national portrait gallery, ,Obituary, ,Phil Bicker, ,photography, ,Saatchi Gallery, ,seattle, ,The Face, ,Underexposed, ,va, ,vogue

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Amelia’s Magazine | Dear Fashion Diary: an interview with Emmi Ojala

Dear Fashion Diary

How did you first come across the idea of the Free Fashion Challenge, and why did you decide to take part? 


The Free Fashion Challenge was an initiative of Laura de Jong, who studied in the same fashion school (Amsterdam Fashion Institute) with me. She started the project to challenge fashionistas to rethink fashion and personal style outside the cycle of consumption. A teacher of mine introduced me to the project, asking if I would be interested in participating in the challenge. First it felt like a big commitment to sign up for not shopping for a year, but it was such an intriguing challenge that I ended up saying yes. I was curious to see how well I would cope, and so many people around me were shocked by the mere idea that it made me want to prove that spending 365 days without shopping would be doable.

Dear Fashion Journal

What was the biggest challenge when you stopped shopping for a whole year?
The biggest challenge was trying not to get bored with my clothes and find ways to cope when my clothes started to wear out. By the end of the year, I didn’t have one single pair of stockings without holes, so I always wore two on top of each other to cover the rips. I also started spending more time restyling my old clothes in attempts of staying excited about my outfits. It gave me the same happy feeling you get when you wear something new for the first time.

Dear Fashion Journal

And what was the most surprising thing that you learnt after a year without spending on clothes?
Most surprising thing I learned was that not shopping wasn’t actually that difficult. The only thing that I really missed was treasure hunting in second hand shops, but other than that I hardly had any temptations to spend on clothes.

Dear Fashion Journal

How did you learn to make your clothes fit seasonal trends, without buying new stuff?

My closet stayed pretty up-to-date thanks to swapping with friends and visiting my mom’s closet in search for old items. I was so happy that she had kept some of her golden oldies, because trends go around, come around, and suddenly old items begin to look contemporary again. Also DIY helps a lot if one wants to be trendy without spending; you can dye your clothes, cut them up and sew them back together into something fresh. The cyberspace is full of great DIY tutorials, so you can always find ways to customize your clothes even if you weren’t an expert on sewing.

Dear Fashion Journal

What was the process behind the creation of Dear Fashion Journal? What were you trying to achieve?

During the Free Fashion Challenge, all us participants wrote about our experiences on a blog. There were quite some thought evoking aha-moments documented there, so after the challenge was over, I wanted to dig a bit deeper and collect stories inspired by those experiences into a printed publication. My goal was to arouse thoughts on our attitudes towards fashion and ever-changing trends, and do so without nagging about green this and eco that. I wanted to tell personal stories that would inspire people to be creative with fashion and think about their clothes as something valuable rather than throwaway pieces. 


Dear Fashion Diary

How did you set about collecting all your data, and finding illustrators to work with you on the journal? 

The entire magazine is based on the experiences of 30 people, who took part in the year of not shopping. I interviewed many of them to find out what they had learned, what had been their most striking experiences and if their thoughts on fashion and style had changed. All the articles in the magazine are inspired by those discussions and by the blog that we wrote during the challenge.

I have always loved richly illustrated books and magazines, so I knew from the beginning that Dear Fashion Journal would have to be like that, too. I had a wish-list of illustrators I wanted to work with, and was over the moon to get to feature illustrations from Daria Hlazatova and Krister Selin, both of whom I knew from Amelia’s Magazine. I also found some great artists via friends, blogs and portfolio sites like Behance. Next to that, me and my best friend Sarah Meers also spent a few long weekends illustrating some of the articles for the journal ourselves.


Dear Fashion Diary

You have since created a book called Dear Fashion Diary, which is a place where people can record their relationship with clothes – how did this come about?
Before I decided to self-publish Dear Fashion Journal, I got in touch with BIS Publishers and introduced the concept to them. The journal gave them an idea about a kind of a fashion diary, and they asked if I would be interested in working on something like that. Coincidentally, me and Laura de Jong (the founder of Free Fashion Challenge) had already earlier been brainstorming about making a notebook full of fashion assignments, so we took on the project together and so Dear Fashion Diary was born.

Where can people in the UK find a copy of Dear Fashion Diary?


You can find the Diary at Tate Modern, Podshop, Blackwells, Rizzoli Bookshop, Waterstones as well as order it through Amazon.

The journal can be ordered online here.

What next? Any other projects in the pipeline?

For now, I’m happily busy illustrating a children’s book and freelancing for a few other clients, whilst waiting for my brain to blurt out the next great idea for a project of my own!

Emmi Ojala is featured in Amelia’s Anthology of Illustration. You can follow her travels in illustration, fashion and sustainability on twitter here.

Categories ,Amelia’s Anthology of Illustration, ,Amsterdam Fashion Institute, ,BIS Publishers, ,Blackwells, ,Daria Hlazatova, ,Dear Fashion Diary, ,Dear Fashion Journal, ,Emmi Ojala, ,ethical, ,fashion, ,Free Fashion Challenge, ,illustration, ,interview, ,Krister Selin, ,Laura de Jong, ,Podshop, ,Rizzoli Bookshop, ,Sarah Meers, ,sustainable, ,Tate Modern, ,Waterstones

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Amelia’s Magazine | Discovering Tour de Force at Luna and Curious

Tour de Force headpiece by Alicia Rosam
Tour de Force headpiece by Alicia Rosam.

Luna & Curious used to be at the end of my road, malady but in February they relocated to a new store on Calvert Avenue just near Arnold Circus – part of the famous Boundary Estate, one of the first ever council housing schemes in the world.

Luna and Curious Calvert Avenue shop

Their stock remains excellently curated by founders Rheanna Lingham, Polly George and Kaoru Parry but the bigger space allows for a larger range of exciting designers to showcase their work. So it was through them that I was introduced to the delights of the Tour de Force headwear range by the Gibraltarian designer Camille Roman, who graduated from Central Saint Martins before working for Lanvin, Zac Posen and Johnny Loves Rosie then launching her own range of luxury accessories and womenswear. Luna & Curious were her first UK stockist two years ago and since then the brand has grown and grown. I caught up with Camille ahead of an exciting Easter project with Bompas & Parr.

Tour De Force Budding by Gareth A Hopkins
Tour De Force Budding by Gareth A Hopkins.

How did growing up in Gibralter set you up to become a headwear designer?
I didn’t actually grow up there, but all of my family live there, so I spent every summer and holiday with them. There have been tailors and seamstresses in my family and their love of fashion and hand-crafted detail got me hooked as a kid!

Tour de Force Headpiece SS 2011
Tour de Force Headpiece from the S/S 2011 collection.
 
Where does your studio look like?
It gets overcome by waves of chaos and a lot of ‘stuff’ everywhere – and then I will hide it all away for a little while – but I am not one of these people that needs to see structure to feel calm. I kind of love a whirlwind process.

Tour de Force Headpiece SS 2011
Tour de Force Headpiece from the S/S 2011 collection.

How did you first get your hats onto the heads of celebs such as Paloma Faith, and have you had any strange requests from a celebrity?
I met Paloma a long time ago through a friend. However, I had previously seen pictures of her from her early burlesque performing days and really wanted to dress her already… she has an amazing presence! I had someone ask for a rodent-inspired piece once, which was cool.

Kate Nash in Tour de Force
Kate Nash in Tour de Force.

Broken Hearts in Tour de Force
Broken Hearts in Tour de Force.
 
What inspired the designs for the current collection?
The S/S 2011 collection is inspired by the spirit of the Glad Game created by Pollyanna in the classic children’s tale: a contrast of innocent optimism and a sense of hardness. For A/W 2011 my inspiration was taken from the Jean Cocteau film Orpheus, about a woman who works for death. This was mixed with arid, volcanic landscapes and structural concepts found within product design to make interesting structures out of rubber.

Tour de Force from the S/S 2011 collection.
Tour de Force from the S/S 2011 collection.
Tour de Force S/S 2011 collection.
 
Who do you see wearing these designs?
Someone with a big personality like Jessie J (who wore a Tour de Force piece for her Brit Nomination appearance) or generally anyone who loves a bit of a dramatic stamp and a stare in life or on stage. I love when celebrities showcase my pieces and enjoy them, but I don’t have a set muse.
 
Tour de Force Struck-Eye Headpiece By Jess Purser
Tour de Force Struck-Eye headpiece by Jess Purser.

What are you working on now and next?
I just made some Dada-inspired Oompa-Loompa headpieces for Bompas & Parr, who have created a real chocolate waterfall for Easter! I am also making something for a Vogue editorial shoot and starting to design for S/S Womenswear 2012 which is always exciting. So lots going on at the moment!

Luna and Curious can be found at 24 ~ 26 Calvert Avenue, London E2 7JP, and is open daily from 11am-6pm. All stock can also be purchased online at Luna and Curious. Check out the Tour de Force website here.

CHOC WATERFALL POSTER bompas and parr

You can visit the Bompas & Parr chocolate waterfall at Whiteleys Shopping Centre in Bayswater between 22nd – 25th April 2011 for £5.00. It was inspired by the 40th anniversary of Willy Wonka’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory film and attendees will be able to walk through the installation before having the chance to create their own chocolate Easter treats to take away. Tickets are available from the Bompas & Parr website.

Categories ,Alicia Rosam, ,Arnold Circus, ,Bayswater, ,Bompas & Parr, ,Boundary Estate, ,Broken Hearts, ,Calvert Avenue, ,Camille Roman, ,Central Saint Martins, ,Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, ,Chocolate Waterfall, ,Easter, ,Gareth A Hopkins, ,Glad Game, ,Headwear, ,Jean Cocteau, ,Jess Purser, ,Jessie J, ,Johnny Loves Rosie, ,Kaoru Parry, ,Kate Nash, ,Lanvin, ,Luna & Curious, ,millinery, ,Oompa-Loompa, ,Orpheus, ,paloma faith, ,Polly George, ,Pollyanna, ,Rheanna Lingham, ,S/S 2011, ,shoreditch, ,Tour de Force, ,vogue, ,Whiteleys Shopping Centre, ,Willy Wonka, ,Zac Posen

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Amelia’s Magazine | An interview with fashion designer David Longshaw

Latitude 2010-Ivo Graham Blind Date by Amelia Gregory
James Acaster by Kathryn Jones
James Acaster by Kathryn Jones.

Over the course of Latitude I saw numerous comedians, online some of whom appeared as comperes on other stages when not performing to surely one of their biggest ever audience (of thousands) in the Comedy Arena. The Cabaret Arena was much favoured, cialis 40mg as of course was the Literary Arena – hanging out with Robin Ince and his fabled posse.

Kevin Eldon, sildenafil Phil Jupitas, Josie Long… they all dropped by, frequently.

Latitude 2010-Phil Jupitas by Amelia Gregory
Phil Jupitas. Photography by Amelia Gregory.

Robin Ince by Stacie Swift
Robin Ince by Stacie Swift.

My favourite part of the longstanding Book Club was a guide to one of Robin Ince’s favourite bad books: Mens’ Secrets, set to a duelling musical accompaniment.

Latitude 2010 James Acaster by Amelia Gregory
James Acaster.

James Acaster was one such novice who I saw happily entertaining pre-act literary crowds with clever improv. Teenage wonder Ivo Graham kept the Cabaret crowd thoroughly entertained with his impromptu rendition of Blind Date – amusingly he is so young he had to be told of Cilla’s name. Weird to think of Blind Date already consigned to ancient TV history.

The main Comedy Arena was my favourite place to hang out in 2007, and it’s popularity continues to grow. Despite additional wing tents on each side of the huge central marquee, the arena remained unable to contain the enthusiastic crowds, who kicked up huge volumes of dust with every new exodus and influx.

Abi Daker - Ivo Graham
Ivo Graham by Abigail Daker.
YouTube Preview Image

One of the biggest draws of Latitude is the chance to discover new talent. Ivo Graham is a mere 19 years old, which made his ability to engage a massive audience all the more impressive. With jokes centred around Facebook, pesky younger brothers and getting in trouble with mum, he still struck a chord with the older folks.

Eric Lambert by Gareth A Hopkins
Eric Lambert by Gareth A Hopkins.

Eric Lambert was winner of the Latitude New Act of the Year 2010, although from what I heard Ivo would have been way more deserving…. or James. Eric’s winning performance centred around an improv routine that wasn’t always quite up to scratch.

Latitude 2010-Eric Lambert by Amelia Gregory
Eric Lambert.

He was cheeky and sexual, no doubt a hit with the ladies. It’s proved nigh on impossible to do any research into Eric since he seems to have zero internet presence… but I would guess from his demeanour that he’s a big fan of Russell Brand.

docbrown_by_iamanoctopus
Doc Brown by Iamanoctopus.

Of the better known comedians I really enjoyed the guide to slang courtesy of Doc Brown, who was formerly a rapper and just happens to be younger brother of Zadie Smith. Sucking snot out of his small child and inappropriate comments on packed buses define his descent towards the normality of family life.

stephen-k-amos-suziewinsor
Stephen K. Amos by Suzie Winsor.

Following him on Friday South Londoner Stephen K. Amos was suitably un-PC, berating his previous Yorkshire audience for its lack of diversity, ripping the piss out of posh people, bemoaning his old age (he’s 35. there’s no hope for me) and generally causing loud if somewhat uncomfortable chuckles across the arena.

On Sunday we caught the tail end of Rufus Hound, who was indeed face-painted up like a dog, if somewhat lacking of a tail. He spoke of the trials and tribulations of marriage and babies… which led onto the misogynistic diatribe of Richard Herring, a 43 year old singleton who made jokes about tit wanks and gay sex, accompanied by a signer for those hard of hearing. Or perhaps just to afford the opportunity to make yet more lewd jokes.

Richard Herring by Sine Skau
Richard Herring by Sine Skau.

He also over-milked an incredibly tedious tirade about Mars Bars that met with a fairly frosty reception… that became part of the act… that increased it’s tediousity. I think he was my least favourite comedian at Latitude.

ANDREW LAWRENCE Faye Skinner
Andrew Lawrence by Faye Skinner.

Next up Andrew Lawrence was really quite sinister but also strangely endearing, geared as his jokes were around his all round lack of appeal. Hey, why the sadness? I’ve always had a soft spot for scrawny gingers! Leaning back at a jaunty angle and grinning demonically he spoke of his semi-autistic relationship with his current (long-suffering) girlfriend. Hey, doesn’t that cover most men?

Lastly, Deborah Francis White put on a genius show on Sunday in the Cabaret Arena. “Every actor wants to be in a sitcom, every man wants to be in a woman,” she informed us, talking us through a series of pie charts that showed the different state of mind for women. Whilst we’d like practically every man we meet to want to sleep with us (approximately 95% according to Deborah) the reverse is true when it comes to the amount of men we actually want to sleep with.

Deborah Francis White Oversees a Bra Fight by Gareth A Hopkins
Deborah Francis White Oversees a Bra Fight by Gareth A Hopkins.

To a chorus of knowing laughter from women, slightly nervous laughter from the men, she talked us through the best way to pull the opposite sex. “Be a Scorsese movie!” she opined, extolling the virtues of confidence. “You’re probably not going to get a part in me…” But the point is that every man should want to. Even if the reason they’re so fixated on lesbian porn is simply “two tits good, four tits better.” She persuaded the women in the audience to stroke themselves on the breast to turn the men on, pulled people out of the audience to follow her instructions on how to tell a girl on the tube she’s gorgeous, and finished with a bra wrestling match between two men. Because who wants to sleep with a man who can’t get a bra off with one hand?

The comedy at Latitude Festival is undeniably one of its biggest selling points… now if only they could figure out how to accommodate the heaving numbers of people that yearn to be amused.


David Longshaw, patient illustrated by Abigail Wright

David Longshaw is a man of many talents. Aside from designing his own label, look he is passionate about writing and illustrating not only for various publications but as part of the creative process behind his collections. 

After his passion for fashion lead him to an open day at the famous Central St Martins, try where all his favourite designers had attended, before even completing his GCSE’s, he decided to go ahead with A Levels at his local Grammar school whilst taking Wednesday afternoons off to study  pattern cutting at an Adult education centre as his first step onto that ladder towards success. It worked.  

Now, with an impressive resume boasting a degree, an MA, various awards, work with designers such as Alberta Ferretti and Max Mara and his own label, he is as motivated as ever and yet to satisfy that inner taste for success in the fashion industry. 


AW10, illustrated by Krister Selin

How did you get from such humble beginnings, attending just one pattern cutting class a week, to working with such big designers and creating your own label? 
During the summer that followed my A Levels, I did a work placement with Adam Entwisle, working on his LFW debut collection. I then studied Art Foundation at Manchester Metropolitan and carried on my pattern cutting, studying the advanced course. Then, during that summer I did work experience at Clements Ribeiro and Hussein Chalayan before starting at St Martins, where I studied BA (Hons) Fashion Design Womenswear. 

The fabric for my graduate collection was given to me by Richard James after doing a work placement there on Savile Row during my second year and the collection won the Colin Barnes Drawing Prize and the Esme Fairburne Award. 

After St Martins I went straight on to the Royal College of Art studying  (MA) Fashion Design Womenswear. I was asked to design for Alberta Ferretti before I finished my graduate collection but said I wanted to finish my MA, so the day after graduating I moved to Italy to design for Alberta. It was great being offered the job before graduating as it meant I could concentrate on my collection and I knew I’d get great experience from designing in Italy. 

My MA collection was selected for the Final of ITS#6 (Trieste) and Le Vif Weekend (Belgium) and I then went on to design for Max Mara in Italy before coming back to start my own label. 


David Longshaw at Ones to Watch, AW10, photographed by Matt Bramford

Where do you get inspiration from for your own label?  
I’m inspired by short illustrated stories I create specially for each new season. My last collection was called ‘Escaping Emily’, it was about a puppet who was discovered by a slightly disturbed fashion designer called Emily who had moved to work in Italy.

Some of the illustrations I then turned in to prints for the dresses – and the cogs that were in some prints and sewn on to some garment, came from the section where Emily finds the puppet in a hamper style basket that’s full of camera and watch parts. The colours, shapes and prints all come from the story.  


Illustration from David’s sketchbooks

Are there any designers that you would compare yourself to or that you admire? 
I wouldn’t compare myself to any one really but I really admire a variety of designers such as Karl Lagerfeld, Miuccia Prada and Ricardo Tisci at Givenchy. Kirsty Ward is a really exciting designer who’s launching her own label this September, after working for Alberta Ferretti and doing jewellery for my collections. 

Are there any pieces from your collections that you are particularly fond or proud of? 
I have a few favourites. One of them is a cog print cropped jacket from my last collection that wasn’t actually on the catwalk in the end as I felt there was enough going on with the dresses and it would have detracted from the total look. I also like the pleated dresses from the last collection as they were the trickiest to construct but after a severe lack of sleep, wither out how I wanted. 


Illustration by David Longshaw

What else do you get up to in any spare time that you manage to have? Is there anything other than designing that you like to immerse yourself in? 
I also do some writing and illustrating for different magazines which you can find links to on the press section of my website. There’s also a section called ‘Maudezine’ where I’ve interviewed Holly Fulton and JulieVerhoven. I’ve also written about up and coming designers with fictional character Maude for Disorder magazine which is quite amusing. 

Other than that, I really love going to galleries and the theatre with my girlfriend when we both have the time! I also really like watching rugby and football, especially live.  I’ve not had much time to go since starting working for myself but I get the odd match in with my dad or friends.   


AW10, illustrated by Krister Selin

So, what’s next for David Longshaw?  
Well short term I’m working on my new collection for September, which I’m planning on exhibiting in London and then Paris. I’m expanding my collection to include some more, simpler pieces using my illustrations as prints so they are more accessible for shops and customers. That will also mean I can have a few more extreme pieces in the collection to balance it all out which should be fun. I’ll also be continuing writing and illustrating. 

Where do you see yourself in the future? 
Hopefully still being as creative as possible – designing , writing and illustrating, just hopefully on a bigger scale with my own larger creative company.



David Longshaw at Ones to Watch, AW10, photographed by Matt Bramford

Categories ,Abigail Wright, ,Adam Entwisle, ,Alberta Ferretti, ,Central St Martins, ,Clements Ribeiro, ,David Longshaw, ,Disorder Magazine, ,Emily, ,Givenchy, ,Holly Fulton, ,Hussein Chalayan, ,JulieVerhoven, ,Karl Lagerfeld, ,Kirsty Ward, ,Krister Selin, ,London Fashion Week, ,ma, ,Manchester Metropolitan, ,Maudezine, ,Max Mara, ,Miuccia Prada, ,Ones To Watch, ,paris, ,Pattern Cutting, ,Ricardo Tisci, ,Richard James, ,Royal College of Art, ,Savile Row, ,Womenswear

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