Tuesday, 15 February 2011

All Walks Beyond The Catwalk Event at The National Portrait Gallery

The All Walks Beyond The Catwalk Event 'Snapped' at the National Portrait Gallery was a gathering of industry individuals who were there to support change in the industry.  On display were a range of photos to promote diversity in fashion, shot by the talented Rankin.  I have already talked about All Walks last year link but the initiative has gained in following and interest over the last year.  The main part of the evening consisted of a debate chaired by Caryn Franklin and the panel consisted of Erin O'Connor, Lorainne Candy (Editor-In-Chief of Elle UK), Lynne Featherstone MP, Linda Papadopoulos and Kiki Kendrick.

Some highlights from the debate:

Lorainne Candy  
"We (Elle) don't present very unrealistic images, we have turned away celebrities that were not good role models...I don't think regulating would work...We don't want to get rid of the beautiful fantasy of fashion, women wouldn't buy magazines that were derogatory to women"
"To regulate airbrushing is very complicated in fashion"
"We should look at all media, not just fashion celebrity culture is a big issue.  Elle is being brave by addressing this issue but Readers must begin the debate"

Erin O'Connor 
"Models are getting increasingly younger - they are vulnerable and not fully formed in mind and in body.  We need to expand on the idea of beauty"

Kiki Kendrick 
"Fashion is the only sector without a regulatory body...people believe the images are real.  Advertising - tell a woman that she is old, fat and ugly and she will spend money, tell her she is young and beautiful and she wont spent any"

Linda Papadopoulos 
"Womens values lies in being desirable"
"Fashion is the only industry where women get paid more than men"
"The more you see something the more it becomes normal.  We don't have the opportunity to question it, we become habituated...Discussions should be started as young as possible...have transparency with airbrushing, we know about images, young girls don't."

The image above perfectly sums up the point that the images portrayed in fashion are unobtainable.  The evening prompted many of the attendees to consider the problems that exist within the industry but also what we can do to change it. 

"Power is with the public" - Caryn Franklin
 S x

'Snapped' at the National Portrait Gallery

Lucy Freeman

Karolina Rogalska

Sunday, 13 February 2011

My Attempt at Millinery

I recently  attempted to make a hat at university in a millinery workshop.  Granted, it may have been possibly the easiest hat to make, but I wanted to create something that I was likely to actually wear.  Below are the pictures and I must say the hat looks rather fetching...

S x

Wednesday, 9 February 2011

S/S 2011 With 'The Hilfigers'

Last season we saw the introduction of 'The Hilfiger' family to various mediums of advertising campaigns. I am happy to report that this season the eclectic family are heading to the country club in a campaign labelled 'El Country de-la-Club-ius'.  The campaign is already being featured in the March editions of major fashion magazines, but we are going to see it promoted through social media, outdoor and online.  Shot by Craig McDean, styled by Karl Templer and Trey Laird served as creative director shows the same cast return from the A/W 2010 campaign.

The clever marketing is clearly showcasing items from all the Hilfiger lines; the fictional 'All American' family is is hip, young old, eclectic and most definitely preppy.  You are not only buying into the Hilfiger lifestyle, you are buying into the family.  What a genetically blessed bunch...


Interview with Textile Designer for Felder Felder - Angela Hooker

Backstage shot by Marco Walker

I caught up with up and coming textile designer Angela Hooker in London’s Covent Garden – the epicentre of UK fashion retail. Born and raised in similarly fashion conscious France, Hooker became fascinated by designers such as Alexander Mcqueen and Martin Margiela, who were making strong conceptual statements via fashion.

After graduating from Central Saint Martins in 2006, Angela tried to launch herself into the industry and found herself working within every aspect of the industry from buying to design. Angela’s first job on graduation was as a pattern cutter for a small company, but she didn't find it very enjoyable, and after a few months she went on to become a brand specialist for Balenciaga in Selfridges.

This position allowed her to have direct communication with customers and to start to understand their buying patterns. During her time at Selfridges, Angela was also involved in buying trips as an assistant buyer for Balenciaga, which culminated in her having a deeper understanding of the designer retail field and also helped to shape her perspective on textile design for designer brands.

Angela’s next step was to jump at the opportunity of working with her fellow student friends from Central St Martins, Danni and Annette Felder. Little did she know that by 2010, her second successful collaboration with the Felder sisters would be gracing the London Fashion Week catwalk – a pretty exciting prospect for any textile designer!

I posed a few questions to Angela :

What was the main inspiration for your print designs for the Felder Felder S/S 11 collection?
I’d been looking at some under water photographs in The National Geographic magazine. You can pick up so many colours from the sea – I really loved the rich pink of the coral.

We also produced a black and white version and did a lot of experimenting with bleaching.
When I first started with Annette and Danni, I did a lot of tie-dye; it’s a kind of trademark technique that we really want to push further every season, comprising digital design and bleaching.

What’s the design process for each new season? Is it difficult sticking to the Felder Felder design identity?
We talk about the collection from the beginning and then we brainstorm the silhouette, cut and colours. My job is to design the textiles and choose the colour palette. I then work on my ideas for the new season, and refine these to choose exactly what would suit the brand.

I’m finding that I am now learning exactly what Felder and Felder love, and what they want to see. I tend to mould my designs to them. I usually come up with 6-12 fabric samples – some of them are as tiny as A5 paper! – and surprisingly that’s the start of the collection.

Why did you decide to go into textile design rather than garment design?
I find that with textile design, you can make your artistic canvas come to life in 3D. You can still do that artistic thing and be creative, but you can also see people wearing it, which is great.

In school I learnt silk screen printing, which is very artisanal, but recently I’ve been really into digital design. I absolutely love it and I’m buying lots of books on it! I’m going to be focusing on digital design in future because it’s a really exciting technique and I’m really passionate about it.

Do you have any particular fabrics you love and hate working with?
I try to use modern textiles. I love velvet for its texture and shine, but it’s really hard to work with. I just want to now work on fabric that doesn’t fray when you cut it! I’d like to work with more modern fabrics.

Angela is now in the process of developing ideas for the next collection, but as we are rounding up the interview, she is excitedly discussing future ambitions for the brand.
From the Felder Felder pre collection to looking into the possibility of moving into the homewares market, Angela has ambitions.

The Henson apartment designed by the Felder twins using textiles designed by Angela

“I’m excited to work with furniture, so hopefully in the next few years I will be working on that, and you never know, you might just see my textile designs gracing the shelves of Liberty’s in London soon!”.

I hope so too.

Angela's Blog