Sebastian Collinge, recently made the press, after his GFW award winning products were praised openly by David Beckham. We caught up with the winner of the New Business Award to hear more about his entrepreneurial pursuits and design ideas.
Taking inspiration from minimal Australian plant based beauty product retailer Aesop, Sebastian created Attirecare, a brand focused on denim washes and laundry products. Read on to find out more about his aspirations, thoughts on versatility in fashion and how he's using the recent rise in the popularity of cycling to expand his business.
How did it feel when your name was read out?
It was quite a surreal experience; I was not expecting to win it what so ever! It has definitely now given me more confidence in my work and what I now what to achieve with the business.
Which university did you attend, and how do you think they prepared you for graduation?
I attended Manchester Metropolitan University, I think they prepared me for graduation by always pushing me to take a placement year because without this year I don’t think I would have achieved as much at university as I have done. We have always been taught to be entrepreneurial on our course and developing skills in many different areas of the fashion industry that as a graduate can make you very versatile.
Photography by Will Barker
Describe the inspiration and concept behind your work.
The design and inspiration for the brand comes heavily from the likes of Le Labo and Aesop who are perfume and Apothecary specialists who have revolutionised the industry with minimal and timeless design throughout their ranges.
Attirecare wants to bring this style of minimal and clean design to the Shoe & Garment care market. The brand believes that there is a complete target consumer in itself for these types of products if designed and delivered in the correct way. Someone who would shop at this type of brand, the vision and dream is for that same consumer to shop at Attirecare for shoe, home or garment care products.
What do you plan to pursue now, and where do you hope to be in five years time?
This consists of growing the brands current market position through garment and shoe care products, gaining a loyal customer base, feedback and repeat customers who choose to shop at the brand more than once. Developing a wider range of detergent products introducing unique smells to the market of laundry. Labels for the garment care range will also be adapted to have their own identity steering away from a similar look that the shoe care range currently has. Collection 3 is currently in the development stages and set to launch within the next 12 months. This range will be focused primarily on home wares and the products available to take care of them, for example easy to use kits to look after a newly bought sofa, contracts can also be made with furniture shops so that a AC kit is supplied with every sofa sold.
The business also has intentions of launching care products for your bicycle. With the increase on consumers opting to cycle in the United Kingdom (cycling, UK, online) these products would be effective in the current market place and products which the business can already make and and bring to market, collaborating with brands like Veloretti in Amsterdam (shown), who currently do not even offer these products themselves would be an option for future growth.
So in 5 years’ time the dream would be to have all 4 collections launched and an interactive flagship store in either London or Manchester where customers can visit and try all of our products.
If you could give one piece of advice to yourself in first year, what would it be?
Don’t be afraid to try new things and follow your gut feeling, because most of the time your gut feeling is the correct one.