Category: Designers

FashionFunny Granny Pictures and Fashion Design?

This week, I was perusing blogs and websites about fashion, design, art, and all things I love, when I happened upon a blog by a young woman named Charlotte Taylor. I found out that Charlotte is an up-and-coming fashion designer who is spunky, bright, and brimming with an optimism that is hard to find in the fashion industry right now.

Charlotte’s blog documents the process of starting her own line. I thought this was genius. It shows such a down-to-earth and human side of fashion that you can really relate to. This was very refreshing when compared to the normal snobbery of the fashion world that attempts to work as far away and as secretly as possible.

Charlotte went to Central Saint Martins, which is a fashion design school that most of the students at Pratt (the design school I attended in NYC) idolized. I was interested in her experience at design school and after design school, so I asked her if she would do an interview and explain some of her experiences of being and becoming a fashion designer with all of the lovely fans!

So here is the interview and some pics of her design process. Check it out!

Here is a picture of one of her mood boards that has some of the images that have inspired her line!

How did you get into fashion design?

I have always been artistic. I spent my weekends painting the Lake District, where I grew up, in watercolor. (Could I be more twee?!) I initially wanted to be an architect but changed my mind in my late teens. I am definitely a designer, as opposed to a “fashionista.” I love being creative and experimenting. I’m also one for pushing and challenging myself; I think it comes from having an older brother. If I didn’t keep up, I got left out!

What was fashion design like at Central Saint Martins?

To be honest, I didn’t really enjoy it for the fist few years, and I nearly left on a number of occasions for a number of reasons. However, I did a sandwich course, and in that I mainly worked with Marcus Constable, who was brilliant and taught me so much. I owe a lot to him. When I returned to college for my final year, we had a new tutor who was super enthusiastic and really pushed the course and the system. I loved every minute of that year and have really fond memories. We were like a family and would take it in turns to bring each other treats to keep us going.

What are the things that really get you worked up and going when it comes to your work? Is it the drawing, production, fabrications, etc.?

Hmm, all of it, really. It is the most satisfying thing, looking back at an inspiration board with finished garments in your hand, picking out where all the details, fabrics, pleats, etc. came from. I find the whole process totally exhilarating. Even being creative with marketing and PR is exciting. I am totally in love with what I do. It gives me such a buzz.

Who are some designers that have influenced you the most? Or any artists that have had an impact on the way that you see/approach design?

Jenny Saville influenced me a lot in my early days (about 15 years old). She paints overweight ladies in a “no frills” manner. She shows people, warts and all, and accentuates the bad parts more than the good. I love her paintings, although some of them are truly grotesque. It really got me started on “ugly beauty.” I then moved on to beauty in age, decay, etc. and am still today influenced greatly by all these things. I wouldn’t say that I am influenced by designers as such; it is more everyday life.

What are some of your favorite trends or fashion movements?

I love the mods. I have a lot of respect for punks too. It was revolutionary. To be a punk, you have to sacrifice a normal existence to some extent. It’s a life change. I’m also a closet 80’s fan, mainly because most of it makes me laugh a lot. The film Working Girl is one of my favorites. White socks and trainers over 10 denier tights with a mini skirt and a perm that would put any poodle to shame … you’ve got to give that girl credit.

For your upcoming debut, what is the concept/inspiration for the collection? Or how did grannies start to inspire you? What details/attributes to little old ladies are you implementing in your designs?

The collection is inspired by trashy grannies, penguins and the eccentric within. I take aspects from all of these. Colour, shape, fabric, story, etc. The clothes do not look like they have been swiped from a granny’s back; they just have hints of it.

And what are some of your hopes and dreams for where your ideal landing place would be with your line and business?

I aim to sell to small boutiques in the UK and online, starting small to build up good relationships with retailers and make sure that all deadlines and targets are met. There is nothing worse than a designer getting too big for their boots at the beginning, falling flat on their face and then looking like a fool the next season when they end up with half the budget and rubbish collection/lookbook etc. People don’t forget that. Fashion is all about image and the publics’ perception of a brand. If people like the brand’s image and the “Charlotte Taylor girl,” they will buy the product. Marc Jacobs is exemplary at this.

Any other hobbies/interests that you have?

When I’m not in the studio I’m doing sport of some kind. I’m big into my watersports and have been wakeboarding and skurfing all summer. I am learning to surf too. I also did a half triathlon last year and am doing a half marathon in March with my bro. We intend to do a full triathlon by the end of the year. I would love to run the New York Marathon as well. I am a massive skiing fan too.

FashionA SPRING Fling with Jason Wu!!

This spring, women around the world are having a fling with fashion designer Jason Wu. Watch the models walk the catwalk below, in his pieces which were created and sewn to fit each and every model!

Jason Wu‘s Spring 2010 Collection has inspired the masses to adorn lofty, draped, chiffon dresses everywhere and anywhere. For example (below), this wonderful style dress was first seen on the runway at the Jason Wu show, then on Zoe Saldana at the T Magazine Party on

And last, but certainly not least, we have the same style of adorable dress, otherwise known as the Conversation Hearts Dress sold out!], at!!


FashionFirst Pakistani Fashion Week EVER!!

This month our fav, fav, favorite makeup artist Nyala has stepped out and over to travel the world! Nyala started in New York City, then went on to Dubai, and then to Pakistan! In Pakistan, Nyala is overseeing the production of the garments for her wedding ceremony and checking out all of the top designers in the fashion world of Pakistan. Here is what Nyala sent us from Pakistan about the new fashion trends and what she thinks of the growing “fashion scene” in Pakistan!

Salaam from Pakistan!

One Pakistani industry that has shown power, strength, and ingenuity throughout the chaos and devastation of its recent history is Pakistan’s fashion industry. Pakistan’s fashion industry has made its colorfully draped and sparkling mark in the international fashion world by launching its very own and one-of-a-kind Fashion Week!

The first annual Pakistan Fashion Week was launched in November of 2009 in Karachi and comprised of 16 shows in four days. According to the fashion savvy, the flavor and exotically creative looks that came down the catwalk provided an eye-catching and fashionable feast for all.

Exhibition stalls, business seminars and a total of 30 designers showcased their ready-to-wear and bridal collections around the catwalk. After having been to many fashion events in New York and L.A., I have to say that the runways here in Pakistan are unlike anything I have seen before in the U.S.

I’ll be doing one-on-one interviews with some of my favorite designers very soon, so stay posted! –Nyala

FashionLove Conquers All : Omnia Vincit Amor

There are many new and hot figures flirting with the cameras about town in NYC these days, but there is one in particular that has caught my attention again and again. I have to admit, he was the only Sikh man in all of the “who’s who” party pictures on, and he was in sooooo many of them that I couldn’t help wondering who he was.

His name is Waris Ahluwalia, of the House of Waris jewelry company. Waris jewelry could charm almost anyone, gleaming with precious gems and whimisical fantasy. In order to keep up such a business, Waris can be seen working around the clock to keep on the cutting edge of the world of the socialites.

Not only is Waris an amazing jewelry designer, he is also an actor. Waris premiers in the Darjeeling Limited as the train conductor but is also in The Life Aquatic. I LOVE Wes Anderson movies, so this was awesome to find out!

Here, below and to the left, are Waris’ earrings. On the right, here’s a Lulus necklace [sold out!] that is reminiscent of his style and use of gemstones (although our necklace does not actually have real gemstones in it).

NewsFirst-Hand Account From MILAN!

So, guys, here is news fresh from our fashion fabulous reporter Megan Jones in Milan, Italy! This week, Megan tells us how and why you should go go go study abroad at the first chance you get!

Thanks for the introduction Siobhan!

As mentioned, I’m living in Milan this year on an exchange. For anyone interested in studying abroad/exchanging, I have only one tip:

GO, and don’t turn back.

This has been an experience of a lifetime so far — nothing that you could experience on a vacation or backpacking trip. So just do it! (Oh, and FYI, there are plenty of opportunities for extra scholarships to go! The Gilman International Scholarship is one.)

The school I attend in Milan is NABA; it’s completely different from Pratt, and other schools in the U.S., for that matter. You just have to be optimistic and take everything as it comes. The way the Europeans approach design is totally different! I’m glad I have the opportunity to experience both.

Pratt is an AMAZING school; it is very serious about deadlines, and the amount and quality of student work is unbelievable. NABA, on the other hand, focuses on developing their students’ creative processes … a lot of thinking and not as many assignments, but the time spent on projects is hardly less.

What should you expect when arriving in Milan?

Well, if you ask, most Italians think Milan is not their best city. They prefer Rome or Florence. For me, Milan is the perfect balance of the Italian culture and a busy industrial city, and don’t forget the great FASHION (which Rome lacks in comparison … to me, it’s too touristy). Milan’s nightlife is also great — the Milanese know how to party.

What you should be warned about:

Some think it is not all that clean, but who looks down? Just look at the people passing you by; it’s more interesting! Milan also has tons of graffiti. Some are just bad scribbles, but on the flip side, there is a lot of really cool street art that is worth looking out for.

The siesta time: Virtually everything (that is not close to the Domo) is closed for lunch time. This can be an inconvenience and a hard adjustment, coming from the land of 24-hour drugstores. And for the Americans — the exchange rate will get you!

Hope you enjoy the random street art I spotted today!

Reporting from Milan,