Katie was inspired by working from home due to COVID-19, realising how much workwear has gone to waste, with consumers no longer wearing it. Her textiles are inspired by being surrounded by nature in the first lockdown. Up-cycling old workwear into more fashionable and comfortable clothing.
My ambition as a designer is to challenge myself to create new and creative clothing sustainably, in new and imaginative ways. I would love to be able to educate people about how to make better choices for fashion and how you can be more sustainable within the fashion industry.
During the pandemic, many people changed their working arrangements to work at home. Everyone said they haven’t worn their work clothes since being in the office. This made me think about how much workwear must be going to waste, everyone had told me that they threw on a shirt when they had to put their cameras on for a Zoom call. What if I was able to create a collection that up cycles the workwear that is going to waste, to turn this into something you could wear whilst working, but also comfortable?
A sustainable and current concept, I wanted to be able to deliver both of these ideas into one. I did this by incorporating a traditional work collar, but with more relaxed silhouettes and comfortable fabrics and pairing them with a pyjama style trouser which invites relaxation. I also wanted my textiles to speak to my concept and decided to take further inspiration from lockdown; our longing for nature. Prints, embroideries and appliques feature bold and subtle floral motifs.
I began the initial design process by exploring different ways to reconstruct old clothing. I started by collaging pieces together to get an idea of how I could use old workwear to make a collection that was both sustainable and portrayed my concept. I played around with different textile techniques that I could use that are also sustainable and experimented with embroidery and appliqué. I decided to use back basted appliqué also made from old discarted clothing. The colour palette for this collection is very important, I chose warm tones as these are meant to help de-stress, a very important aspect whilst working.