Katie Darlington

Welsh-born, Kingston graduate Katie Darlington is one designer making waves in the fashion industry.  Her debut collection ‘Collecting Sentiment’, incorporating innovative pattern cutting and print design saw her win the Wolf & Badger Graduate Design award for fashion, with her collection now stocked at Wolf & Badger in the fashionable area of Notting Hill.

Katie’s collection features a combination of soft tailoring with gentle fluidity, most noticeable in jumpsuits and dresses.  The inspiration behind ‘Collecting Sentiment’ came from her great grandfather’s journal, documenting his time in North Africa and Italy during World War Two; linking the past with the present.

Another noticeable aspect of Katie’s collection is the heavy use of prints – originally meant to be digital print, following a tutorial with print designer Mark Eley; Katie instead decided to incorporate the look of hand-dyed silk, so whilst the ink print has been digitally printed on her collection, the image is blown up from hand-dyed ink bleedings, giving it a more raw feel.

To have a look at some of the pieces from Katie’s beautiful collection, check out her website

 

 

HOLLY FULTON DESIGNER

Eccentric songstress, Noosha Fox is my muse for this season” says Holly Fulton about her Spring/Summer collection 2014. And as the models walk down the catwalk  to “Only You Can”, it is pretty obvious that she was successful in recreating the summer vibe from the 70s that she was looking for. If her show was to be described in a few words, it would probably be energy and fun, two words that also seem to match her personality. Her quick but smiling appearance at the end, in a gorgeous kimono dress, finally convinces – me, at least – that Holly Fulton has a bright fashion future ahead of her.

Born in Edinburgh, she studied at first at the Edinburgh College of Art before entering the Royal College of Art in London. Despite her young age, she is considered one of the most promising designers in Britain, and has already won the 2009 Swarovski Emerging Talent for Accessories, the Young Designer of the Year Award at the Scottish Fashion Awards and the Elle Style Award for new designer in 2010. Today, after creating six shows with the same enthusiasm, Fulton has successfully imposed her very unique style among the London fashion scene. Her incomparable designs have even led some to describe her as the “Scottish Roberto Cavalli”!

Watching her Spring/ Summer 2014 collection, you will be caught by reminiscing thoughts of 70s disco nights overloaded with color and dubious prints. But Fulton, unlike my twenty year-old Dad, avoids fashion faux-pas, and successfully combines the modernity and vibrancy of New York silhouettes with vintage styles. That choker necklace that our Mum hasn’t worn in public in thirty years? Looks great when stylized with great taste and a well cut bustier dress! She has managed to impose geometrical prints as her trademark and the tribal feel that she has given to her work for this season falls in with what she has done in the past. Her unusual use of accessories, from XXL jewellery to unexpected fan-bags, never fails to surprise and is certainly worth the look.

Find out more about Holly Fulton on her official website or on Facebook, or follow her on Twitter!

Jessica Ng

Jessica Ng, a recent graduate from London College of Fashion’s BA Design Technology: Womenswear course, should be a one to watch for every keen fashionista wanting to keep hand on pulse of London’s fashion scene.

With her graduate collection “So Wrong It’s Right”, Jessica explores the concept of twisted innocence by combining familiarity of personal experiences with a touch of the forbidden. The outcome is a highly wearable and beautiful collection full of contrasts. The designer chose a candy-coloured pink Harris Tweed as the primary fabric used in the collection and confronted it with oversized masculine silhouettes and rough textures. Keeping a great attention for tailoring while not forgetting about the originality and individuality of finishing, Jessica created modern and interesting garments that make a bold fashion statement.

Jessica’s not scared of admitting that her collection was partly inspired by works of controversial artists such as Sally Mann or Irina Ionesco. Contrasting them with the designer’s own childhood memories and Egon Schiele’s paintings created the core of “So Wrong It’s Right” designs.

What I particularly like in Jessica’s clothes is that they are not one-dimensional. Many of young designers often make a mistake of either focusing on their message and forgetting about the clothes or wanting to make just a pretty dress that will look good on a model. “So Wrong It’s Right” does not only aim to create a discussion, juxtaposing corrupted and purity but also consists of beautifully-tailored, original designs with a strong sense of the designer’s individual style. They can be worn by a stylish lady in her 70s and a young, hip student from East London. Versatile clothing with a meaning – what else could you want from a recent graduate?

 Images: http://showtime.arts.ac.uk/

Jacob Birge

Anyone familiar with the Edinburgh fashion scene will have come across the name Jacob Birge before. This young man is a creative force to be reckoned with; working in the fields of fashion, music, and design, Birge constantly pushes the boundaries of mixed media.

Having graduated from the Edinburgh College of Fashion in 2012, Birge’s graduate collection was shown in Vogue, Trendland, Slang Magazine, I Heart, and Not Just a Label. The collection ‘Symmetric Strategy’ showed clear references to architectural forms and geometricity, and their relationship with the female form in a Pughian fashion. There were also nods to the natural world – the final look, composed of tectonic membranes, was quite groundbreaking in it’s exceptional construction and conception.

Most important to Birge’s creative outlook has been his mixed education. Prior to the move to Edinburgh, the designer studied at TEKO Design College in Denmark. But interestingly, this was only a secondary degree following an MA in Chemistry for the University of Science and Technology Cracow in 2008. Such a comprehensive knowledge base imbues the designer’s work with intellectual facets that are so often lacking in most graduate collections.

Despite having interests that are far-reaching, encompassing science, maths, and music, fashion became Birge’s passion from an early age. In September 2012, he received funding to establish the fashion label Jacob Birge Vision. Plans for the brand include establishing it as a household name, as well as showing regular collections at London Fashion Week, the first of which will be shown this February for A/W 2013/14.

Musically speaking, Birge released his first album ‘Variations’ in November 2011. His sound is ethereal and arresting, a curious combination of natural harmony and discordance. He cites music as the overwhelming influence for all of his creative work, and includes Autechre, Venetian Snares, SND, and Aphex Twin as some of his favorite artists.

Jacob Birge is by far and away one of the most talented and hard working artists I’ve had the pleasure of speaking with. His focus on modernity and drive to discover will inevitably lead him to dizzying heights.

For the full body of work visit www.jacobbirge.eu.