Whilst eco-couture has always been ahead of the times in terms of sustainability, 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. ?
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.
- London Fashion Week S/S 2011 Presentation Review: Ada Zanditon
- London Fashion Week A/W 2011 Preview: Ada Zanditon on Sustainability
- London Fashion Week A/W 2011 Presentation Review: Ada Zanditon’s The Cryoflux
- Pre-LFW interview: Ada Zanditon
- Ada Zanditon Interview