I am a womenswear design graduate specializing in pattern cutting. My favourite way to work is to start off by taking a silhouette that I have seen through my research and develop this into an initial design, I will then start to draft it on the stand to give me a 3D basis that will allow me to visualise it clearer so I can then develop further details onto.
The message in my Final collection- The Royal Runt has stemmed from the idea of how the craftsmanship of our modern-day clothing has been replaced by the “new luxury” of branding and how we use this to impose a higher sense of social standing and the feeling of inclusion. I juxtaposed modern day branding focusing on streetwear/ sportswear silhouettes as these are most worn by the working class (perhaps seen as the “runt” of the social hierarchy), with the aristocracy of the 1800’s- who’s only purpose was intended to display the highest social class.
My inspiration for design comes from the idea that a person’s clothing can act as a uniform of what they are about. In a sense, it is a representation of their personality and who they are. I am fascinated with youth cultures from different periods in a time that I feel truly represented themselves, the likes of skinheads, teddy boys and punks - you instantly knew what they were about just by looking at what they had on. I like the idea that clothing can have far more meaning than a garment that you wear.
I’d like to think I’ve brought together the best of both worlds in my collection. I’ve taken modern sportswear fabrics/trims & branding inspired by the working-class youth and used old pattern making techniques to create the extreme silhouettes from the gowns worn by 1800's aristocracy. It’s interesting to see how branding has replaced the idea of craftsmanship as something desirable. I like exploring the worlds teenagers create for themselves and what is important to them.
I strongly believe in the fashion industry’s need to incorporate more time and effort into slowing down their design process and ensuring that all finished products are made from high quality materials that can be recycled, obtained from sustainable sources and made by workers on fair living wages. I also believe that all future fashion should serve a purpose through considered design. The future of young people depend upon a healthy planet and the fashion industry can contribute to that. I have used irony in my collection juxtaposing 1870’s fashion with 21st century branding. Both were and are worn to reflect the wearer’s social standing and feeling of inclusion often with little thought into how or who made these clothes.