Wonderland.

ONES TO WATCH: LCF, BA 15

London College of Fashion gives its graduating students a catwalk send-off. Five in particular caught our eye.

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London College of Fashion’s (LCF) annual runway show returns next Monday to show-off its graduating students. The BA15 catwalk will showcase 20 collections styled by Rob Phillips, Creative Director of Fashion and Design. It’s a shakeup of their usual blueprint – BA15 is the first time all BA students join forces under one roof. Designers have teamed up to create a collaborative, cross-disciplinary spectacle, all hoping to score the Collection of the Year Award. Can’t make it to the show? That’s no excuse to miss out – the runway show will be followed by an exhibition from Tuesday 9th. Five dream teams in particular caught our eye. Here, the designers talk us through the collection.

CHUN YIN MOK

A lone ranger of the show, Yin Mok stuck to his own drawing board when creating his line. His collection – bold with its use of sculpted lines and a malleable silhouette – won’t appear on the high street any time soon but it will stick in your memory.

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Name: Chun Yin Mok

Course: BA (Hons) Womenswear

Where are you from?

Originally from Hong Kong.

Talk us through your final project

I am inspired by Kazimir Malevich and Suprematism. To re-look at the meanings that have been already given.

What do you love about what you do? 

I get to do what I love to do.

What is the story behind your final piece of work? 

Simply telling the world that a man should paint with his brain and not his hands.

What techniques or theories did you use to create your final piece of work?

I used interlocking and slotted ideas to create this collection. And I also adopted Felice Varini’s methodology to find the silhouettes of my garments.

Describe your work in five words…

Contemporary, innovative, fresh, young and fun.

What inspires you?

Art and life.

MARIANNE TSE-LAURENCE AND EMILY GRIEVES

Anyone who makes a man rock a crop top deserves a medal. This duo, with an intriguing textural jumper paired with oversized pants, achieved it with sangfroid. This alone qualifies them as serious contenders for the Collection of the Year Award. This match made in heaven consists of Tse-Laurence on menswear and Grieves on knitwear.

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Name: Marianne Tse-Laurence

Course: Fashion Design and Development

Where are you from? Fleetwood, North of England.

Talk us through your final project…  

The starting point for this collection was to underpin the empathetic relationship one makes with a garment. A place of origin is at the heart of this project. The Northern Fishing town of Fleetwood is my place of origin and fuels the visceral emotional theme of the collection. It also provided an abundance of visuals, textures, forms and memories. Fleetwood is a small, somewhat sombre ex-fishing town however there is subtle solace beauty, which comes apparent in this meaningful collection.

What do you love about what you do? 

I love experimenting with different techniques and collating from varied sources to create something new, and seeing how the project has developed and changed from conception to completion.

What is the story behind your final piece of work? 

As I have chosen such an emotional tie as my inspiration I hope this translates into my garments and subsequently into whoever wears them. The connection and origin is really important to my work.

What techniques or theories did you use to create your final piece of work?  

We all have a duty to respect our environment and preserve our future. MTL (my brand) hopes to achieve this through intelligent design for purpose, ethical practices and longevity of style.

Describe your work in five words… Emotive, Textual, Thoughtful, Worked and Innovative.

Do you have a muse? If so, who and why? I find both my parents a muse, I always find my work improves when I have a strong emotional connection with it and the varying cultural backgrounds of my parents provide great inspiration.

What inspires you? Everything, film, music, travel, exhibitions, I love open landscapes and documenting everything small and vast.

MARIA GIANNAKOPOULOU AND SCYLIA CHEVEAUX 

She didn’t make it easy for herself. Visualising sound is tricky business but Giannakopoulou went one step further and materialised it in her collection. Delicate thread work in metallic hues – nostalgic of threadbare school jumpers three terms past their prime – moves as an extension of the model. Footwear is provided by Chevaux and menswear and textiles by Giannakopoulou.

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Name:  Maria Giannakopopulou

Course: BA Fashion Textiles: Embroidery

Where are you from?

I am from Athens, Greece

Talk us through your final project…

This collection called “In The Blink Of An Ear” is based upon the theme of visualizing and materializing sound. The juxtaposition of sound recordings from London and Athens formed a solid base for investigation in the change of perception of imagery via the impact of sound. This collection is not a statement of diminishing the importance of vision or excluding it as the dominant sense, but rather highlighting the unseen world of sound acoustic which is open to interpretation. Researching into sound art and performance inspired me to create an interactive and original series of outfits which focus on time consuming hand processes. Movement, tension and vivacity are explored through multiple manipulations of fabric. This collection consists of experimental interactive textiles, including hand and machine embroidery that will reflect sound analysis and highlight the intricacy and delicacy of embroidered textiles.

What do you love about what you do?

I love creating original textile pieces, and getting creative with multiple materials.

What is the story behind your final piece of work?

My final piece of work is reflecting my interest in interactive textiles and hand craft processes.  It is all about the movement, vivacity and tension of the threads in correlation with the human body. It shows my passion for my specialism and my interest in pushing the boundaries of hand embroidery.

What techniques or theories did you use to create your final piece of work?  

The main concept behind the design of these final outfits was their “deconstruction” and their “reconstruction”. To achieve that I mainly used the technique of thread pulling.  After taking the fabric apart and leaving only one layer of thread I “reconstruct” the fabric with machine embroidery. Adding some hand embroidery on top adds intricacy and vivacity to the garments. The colour “bleeds” on the garments are added by sublimation printing and hand painting dye paints.

Describe your work in five words…

Intricate. Powerful. Interactive. Textured. Time consuming.

What inspires you?

As a textile designer I get inspired by everyday objects and textures, especially when I start playing and manipulating them.  Creating little experiments in combination with research on other current artist or designers is a very inspiring process for me.

ROSEMARY LAMBERT, KATE DONALD, SIAN O’NEIL, TANAPORN WONGSA AND KATE CHEUNG WING KI

Delicate silks took centre stage, creating a collection that tip-toed between nighttime attire and bohemian chic. Flowers were thrown into the fray and captured the essence of the hippie-esque “No.9 – Kate” story in Love, starring a nude Kate Moss and shot by Tim Walker. Lambert and Donald are womenswear graduates, when O’Neill was responsible for contours, Wongsa for the jewellery and Wing Ki for textiles.

Rosemary Lambert in collab with Sian O'Neill, Tanaporn Wongsa, Kate Donald and Kate Cheung Wing Ki 2

Name: Rosemary Lambert

Course: Fashion Design Technology: Womenswear

Where are you from?

Leamington Spa

Give us one interesting fact about yourself…

I dance ridiculously around the kitchen at least twice a day…!

Talk us through your final project…

I was initially inspired by the Russian photographer Boris Mikhailov who documented a section of society as they became homeless after the fall of the Soviet Union. The portrayal of awkwardness and sadness juxtaposed with the beauty of community inspired the mood of the collection. Relevant imagery collected from the library’s archives combined with garments sourced from charity shops strengthened my research and informed design development. The 6 looks I produced all originated from a piece of clothing taken apart and manipulated back together into something new.

What do you love about what you do?

The satisfaction of solving a problem.

What is the story behind your final piece of work?

It’s a narrative built around removal, dissection and re-manipulation.

What techniques or theories did you use to create your final piece of work? 

I unpicked clothing to reveal the pattern pieces and experimented with these. I combined adding sections with taking others away and coupled this with experimental construction techniques to develop a very personal draping technique.

Describe your work in five words…

Intricate, thoughtful, odd, delicate, imperfect.

Do you have a muse? If so, who and why?

My friends are my muses. The personal touches they put into their aesthetics I work into my designs.

What inspires you?

Anything odd/awkward.

HARRIET BROWN AND NATALIE HITCHON 

A collaboration that oozes J.W. Anderson type vibes, it would look just at home in an arty gallery as in your wardrobe. You can thank Brown for the textiles and Hitchon for the knitwear.

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Name: Natalie Hitchon

Course: BA Fashion Textiles

Where are you from?

I grew up in the village of Maresfield, East Sussex.

Give us one interesting fact about yourself…

I was the Independent Prep Schools Trampoline champion two years running in 2003 and 2004.

Talk us through your final project…

For my graduate collection, I created a range of textile samples for womenswear and the final product was a collection of twenty knitted samples, consisting of a number of techniques and materials such as leather.   My concept was heavily inspired by my London surroundings. I spent the summer leading up to the final collection taking photographs of groups of people in their everyday surroundings and how people conform to a certain group through what they wear and the materials that are used to display this. I then compared and contrasted this with other cultures to give an innovative contrast to my final major project.

What do you love about what you do? 

It’s the best platform for expressing my creative self.

Describe your work in five words…

Innovative, Artistic, Playful, Detailed, Versatile

What inspires you?

I am more inspired by artists and photographers than by designers. My Favourite photographer is Jim Goldberg, who has been influential in a number of my projects at LCF. His work is exciting, relevant and truly graced with emotion. His imagery and poetry written alongside his photographs was a great starting point to my project. However, I would say I am open minded as to where I get inspiration – it doesn’t always come from the same places. I enjoyed designing my final graduate collection, which was inspired by the people of London, I regularly begin my research by capturing colour whether it be a painting or something I see on the street. Anything textural with colour that inspires me I capture and record.

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BA15 will be held at 1 Blossom Street, London, next Monday at 7pm.

Words: Christopher Maul

Photographer: James Rees

Creative Direction: Rob Phillips

Hair: Ezana Ové

Beauty: Kirtsy Gaston

ONES TO WATCH: LCF, BA 15

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