North East of England born and bred, I am a womenswear pattern cutting specialist with a keen interest in storytelling through garment design to creation. My work aims to show gentle shifts in design that manifest into easy ways to implement change into the fashion industry that encourage wearability for a wider audience.
Growing up in the Northumberland countryside allowed me to appreciate the small things within life and every small detail around me, but also know that the North is an area often left behind in England. This is not something that a northerner gets down about however, instead choosing to laugh and jest through the constant battles to celebrate what is it to live in the North East. This combined with opportunities to work alongside a local bridal designer and work within occasionwear led to me have an eye for tongue and cheek design from stories that lead to highly executed end products.
My FMP is entitled ‘That Damn Woman’, a womenswear AW22 collection, raising awareness of the autistic spectrum and the struggles of diagnosis. The project began as a personal exploration of my mother’s fight for my brother’s recognition of asperges syndrome. Misogynistic labelling against my mother for bearing ‘annoyance’ for trying to fight for his rights to simply live in a world unwelcoming to difference shaped the collection, to embrace and celebrate those who empower others through gentle activism.
Using historical muses to frame this idea gives references to historical garments, a theme that led through into the follow-on collection’s concept ‘Our Last Correspondence’, and ‘Flora over Fauna’, a brand collaboration with Erdem. With sustainability also a given, fabrics are sourced from designer deadstock, or support local businesses to encourage circularity and support those forgotten in society, sticking with my design ethos.
The embroidery techniques were developed to allow for society to connect with everyday battles for those of less societal power. Aimed at balancing impact, messaging, and textile created the final output of lettering on tweed using an industrial zig-zag embroidery machine, creating the final back piece as seen on the boilersuit made. The textures of fabrics were picked to have maximum tactile feel, whilst being soft to comfort those on the spectrum, where irritable materials may normally cause issue. Creating my own font for the quote, this was layered onto black organza for legibility and leads to the perfect bold embodiment for those who choose to be ‘That Damn Woman’.