Brand Interviews

5 Mins with new IB.com designer: British Silk Scarf Brand, Heron Design Studio.

Monday, June 15th, 2015

Shop Heron Design Studio :

How do you describe to people what you do and your design style?

My name is Dita and I am designer/owner of print and textile brand Heron Design Studio based in London. I am responsible for illustrations printed on our scarves as well as final colouring and composition. I am old school and I like the idea of hand drawn designs being digitally printed in quantities. It’s like making prints. Old Flemish masters of prints, M C Escher or Alfred Durer are my biggest inspiration.

What sort of comments do you get about your designs?

The comments from my friends and customers are positive. People seem to like my art and they like the idea of wearing it.

What is your background?

I’ve always wanted to be an artist, so I have strong background in fine art like figural drawing, printing as well as painting and then I studied fashion design with focus on scenic costume and fashion illustration. I like to mix them two skills together,

Which designers do you rate highly and why?

I like the quirkiness of British designers like Vivienne Westwood and Pam Hogg and pure style of Italian designers like Giorgio Armani or Missoni. But the ultimate inspiration for (more...)

5 Mins with British Clothing Brand, Madia & Matilda.

Thursday, June 11th, 2015

Shop Madia & Matilda :

How do you describe to people what you do and your design style?

We design sustainable fashion clothing that is mindful of sustainable processes. Our approach to design being mindful of environment, creating timeless classics that are unique and individually made within our local studio in the Cotswolds.

What sort of comments do you get about your designs?

‘Understated Beauty’  ‘Timeless’  ‘uniquely classic’

What is your background?

My background is industry based and retail orientated. From working in retail from the age of 15 to CAD Design for Tesco’s to High end Fashion. With a Degree in Fashion Design & Technology and Textiles A levels & a Tec in Fine Art.

Which designers do you rate highly and why?

Caven, Mary Katrantzou, Chanel. (more...)

5 Mins with British Clothing Brand Nicci.N

Monday, May 4th, 2015

Shop Nicci.N

How do you describe to people what you do and your design style?

I am the brand director of womenswear clothing label, nicci.n. We create feminine and fashionable designs for the style conscious woman with and edge.

What sort of comments do you get about your designs?

That the designs are a ‘bit different’, stylish and are on trend.

What is your background?

I have a degree in fashion design, a masters degree in fashion marketing with distinction and experience in fashion design, buying and retail.

Which designers do you rate highly and why?

There are many designers I rate highly, I have a particular soft spot for Christopher Kane and Holly Fulon given they are both Scottish, there designs are always exceptional season after season.


Tell us about your design process from concept, production and to the shelves…

I start with some research in to a topic or theme which I find interesting, design development, fabric sampling, mock up designs and pattern cutting. We then do two photoshoots, one for product shots and an editorial style shoot for press purposes. After this, the collection goes in to production and is then sold to the customer.

How do you think your brand has developed?

The style has become more refined and with each season we learn something else which can help develop the label.

What do you dislike most about your job?

Sometimes there is just too much work to get through in one day!

What are your main achievements and what do you aim to achieve now? Past present and future

Main achievements are gaining some great press coverage, winning an enterprise award, we have also collaborated with a shopping centre, St James, creating a capsule collection for their annual fashion show, we were involved in a 6 week pop up shop at Glasgow Fort where we were one of the best selling brands, we were also named ‘one to watch’ by textiles Scotland's MODH magazine.

What advice would you have for anyone starting out in (your field)?

I think it is a ‘slow burner’ type of business and you have to be willing to put in the time and effort to make it succeed. Network as much as possible and try to gain as much exposure as you can.

Why do you think British design stands out on the global stage?

British designs are well known for their quality and craftsmanship, the designs also stand out and are unique to british style.

5 Mins with British Clothing Brand Theo & George

Saturday, April 25th, 2015

Shop Theo & George :

How do you describe to people what you do and your design style?

My brand Theo+George is a reflection of my life experiences and style – it combines luxurious materials with easy to wear styles.

What sort of comments do you get about your designs?

I often hear how soft and beautiful the clothes are and how versatile the collection is.

What is your background?

I have a degree in Physics and Economics, but always knew I wanted to be a fashion designer.  I took every art class that my college offered and went to Harvard’s School of Design for the summer after I graduated.  Initially, I worked for an Architecture firm for one year but I still felt that I wanted to work in a faster paced environment and on softgoods.  From there, I got a job as the lead designer for a sporting goods company and then moved onto Burton Snowboards where I worked for their Outerwear department for seven years.

Which designers do you rate highly and why? (more...)

5 Mins With British Accessories Brand Lara Lindsay

Monday, April 20th, 2015

Shop Lara Lindsay :

How do you describe to people what you do and your design style?

I am a designer of luxury leather handbags, which focus on function as much as form. When designing I focus on what the bag will be used for whilst creating elegant silhouettes and clean shapes. I am a British designer with a very British style.

What sort of comments do you get about your designs?

I have been lucky enough to receive very positive comments on my designs, with people saying that the collection looks timeless and stylish, with a quintessentially English feel. I have also had return customers commenting on how they love the look of the leather as it ages and develops.

What is your background?

I studied History of Art at Bristol University and then went on to do an apprenticeship under the fantastic design Selina Cheong in North London. It was here that I learnt to design and make leather accessories first hand, with great tuition and opportunities. I started out on my own in 2012 and have been designing and making ever since, with the business ever growing, whilst keeping it local and British.

Which designers do you rate highly and why?

I love other British Accessories Designers like Ally Capellino and Mimi Berry, both brands with a similar ethos of being Made in British and the success to prove that it works. Designers with an emphasis on chic, simple style and quality materials, get my vote every time.


Tell us about your design process from concept, production and to the shelves…

As I have mentioned every element of the collection is designed and made in house in our Bristol studio. I am always on the look out for interesting shapes and constructions to incorporate into my designs. Initially I come up with a design, or often a few together and do endless sketches to visualise and make them cohesive. Next I make the sample bags, which I will personally then use for a period of time to make sure their function works as designed. Once happy with this the bag will then go into production and onto lovely customers.

How do you think your brand has developed?

The brand is still quite young but I feel that it has developed with an elegant, classic style into something which does not totally follow trends, yet will always be a sample fashion accessory.

What do you dislike most about your job?

I honestly don’t dislike any element of my job, its captivating and creatively challenging. It do wish there were more hours in the day sometimes, but that’s part of being your own boss!

What are your main achievements and what do you aim to achieve now? Past present and future

My main achievement is being able to sell a product which I have personally created though hard learnt skills, in the knowledge that it is of the highest possible quality and will last someone else a lifetime. This is a really pleasing thought! For the future I hope to be able to grow my business future and continue creating British made products to sell to a wider market.

What advice would you have for anyone starting out in (your field)?

Work at it and listen to others advise (sometimes with a pinch of salt), know your own goals and keep going.

Why do you think British design stands out on the global stage?

It seems that British design is synonymous with quality and luxury. In my field that is thanks to leading companies like Mulberry who have proven on the global market that Made in Britain is a stamp worth having! The more designers and brands that can live by this the better. I hope that with LARA LINDSAY as a brand we will only add to this very positive attitude to British design.

 

5 Mins With British Jewellery Brand Anchor & Crew

Thursday, April 16th, 2015

Shop Anchor & Crew :

How do you describe to people what you do and your design style?

People assume that when you design jewellery it is all diamonds and gold but when you explain it further people get more and more interested in the process and the jewellery and a lot come out with a different view. As our designs combine something that is precious, Silver, with something that you don't think of in a way of adoring you, sailing cord, we think that we have quite a unique style and one that sets us out from quite a lot of the rest.

What sort of comments do you get about your designs?

We are getting great comments at the moment as we have been picked up by a lot of fashion bloggers such as Fashion for Lunch, The Everyday Man & Fresh & Fearless to name but a few so you don't need to take our word for it, just look at what they have said!

What is your background?

I have been in the Jewellery trade since the year 2000 when I did a summer job working at H Samuels. I went from there to University to study Jewellery making and Silversmithing  and been in the business since then.

Which designers do you rate highly and why?

We like a lot of designers and what people do out there but I do have a soft spot for Shaun Leane and Stephen Webster for both their jewellery and for what they have done for the business and Britain as a whole.

Tell us about your design process from concept, production and to the shelves…

Like most designers, it all starts with a sketch book and pencil and I just let the fingers run through some ideas based on how Pulleys, Anchors and nautical things work although I am not confined by this concept as in the future we will branch out into different ideas and forms.  From this we work ideas up on CAD and through Wax modelling and finally there is a lot of finishing off and polishing to present the jewellery in its best possible way.

How do you think your brand has developed?

We are only a year old and in that time we have double the number of items that we make, had 3 new launches of different collections and retired 1 collection so you can see that we are ever evolving and adapting to what our customers need and want.

What do you dislike most about your job?

Nothing! I love what I do

What are your main achievements and what do you aim to achieve now? Past present and future

Our biggest achievement with ANCHOR & CREW is that after only  10 months after launch we were voted the Men's Jewellery brand of the year by Professional Jeweller magazine beating many brands that had been established for years.

What advice would you have for anyone starting out in (your field)?

Go for it, don't be afraid to experiment, most of which will not work but it just takes that one thought, alteration or idea and your creation will become will make you very happy and you just have to share it with the world.

Why do you think British design stands out on the global stage?

British Design is unique, well designed and well made. More so than anyone else which is why it is pursued by many foreign people or countries. Whether it be architecture by the likes of Sir Norman Foster to the smallest art work by Willard Wigan. This is from our rich heritage of design and continues today through our schools and universities.

We Spend 5mins with British Silk Scarf Brand Siladora

Monday, March 16th, 2015

Shop Siladora :

How do you describe to people what you do and your design style?

My brand Siladora is a creative collaboration; an art to fashion concept, where each season I work with emerging artists to create a small collection of printed fashion accessories.  My design style is really Art to Fashion. If I can present an opportunity for emerging artists to create something they feel is progressive and develops their portfolio, and that the fashion consumer appreciates I am happy!  I like to have a broad idea or small seed to work from but encourage the artists to contribute their ideas and experience – just take the idea and run with it!

What sort of comments do you get about your designs?

They are beautiful works of art that feel luxurious and sensual when worn.  Wonderful gifts, and a great way to discover new artists and help promote them.

What is your background?

I studied finance in university and have worked in retail analyst or merchandising roles in the apparel industry for the last six years.  Lots of spreadsheets - not very creative at all!  But, I have always loved silk scarves.  They are a little piece of luxury and indulgence, when you might not be able to afford the whole outfit!  I felt so properly posh when I bought my first silk headscarf on sale ten years ago.  And I still have it! I have come from a family of seamstresses, corset (more...)

5 Mins with new IB.com designer: Silk Scarf Brand, Monaara.

Friday, March 13th, 2015

Shop Monaara :

How do you describe to people what you do and your design style?

We design and make premium satin silk fashion scarves, authentic in both quality and originality. Designs are digital prints based on my artwork, which is contemporary take of classic subjects. You will also see influence of Indian design context in the Monaara color pallet. The scarves are hand finished on the edges.

What sort of comments do you get about your designs?

My designs create a joy amongst audience. I hear comments such as very vibrant, unique, playful, soft, well finished and original design.

What is your background?

 

My father used to trade and create fabrics across the Indian sub-continent. Growing up in the this world, I ended up studying fashion and then worked for around ten years in Delhi with Indian Haute Couture brand, Satya Paul. My specialty is playing with colors and intricate patterns; it comes naturally from my Asian lineage. I have experimented with embellishment & surface texturing both manual and with modern machines, and of late I started applying my paintings in a fashion context.

Which designers do you rate highly and why? (more...)

We Spend 5mins with British Swimwear Brand HoloHolo

Saturday, January 31st, 2015

Shop HoloHolo Swimwear :

How do you describe to people what you do and your design style?

My elevator pitch would be that I design swimwear for a unique brand that caters to women that are looking for something a little bit different. Swimwear that not only is fashion-forward and statement making, but also fits in to your beach lifestyle and transitions from day to night. Bikini tops that can be worn as just that- tops: on the beach, at the bar, by the pool or at the party. Swimsuits that you can throw a beautiful skirt or your daisy dukes over and hit the festival circuit. There are no plain old triangle bikinis here.

What sort of comments do you get about your designs?

With the risk of tooting out own horn, we are thrilled to consistently hear from women that they feel outstanding, individual and confident when they wear HoloHolo Swimwear. Putting on our pieces feels like an occasion in itself. They can walk into any room, or indeed beach, with their head held high, self-assured and standing out in a sea of undifferentiated two-pieces. Because you feel your best when you’re comfortable, our customers (or Globetrotting Goddesses as we affectionately call them) love that HoloHolo designs don’t include any metal adornments or rods that heat up in the sun and burn your skin. Our bikini tops are self-tie instead of using clips and hooks at the back, so all tops can be easily adjusted to your fit you perfectly with no dreaded ‘double back’ effect.

What is your background?

I grew up on multiple continents and developed a passion for travel from an early age. The first beach I ever went to was on a family trip to Swakupmund, a picturesque sandy beach in Namibia. Wherever we went, I always found myself gravitating to the water. I am a self-confessed swimwear obsessive and can still remember the first swimsuit I ever owned. It was ocean blue, similar to the HoloHolo brand logo. HoloHolo is therefore a natural extension of my passion for all things beach and travel. Each design is named after someone that has come into my life along the way, from ‘The Playful One’ bikini, which was inspired by one of my travel companions in Cuba to my beautiful Venezuelan friend Eugenia, who was the inspiration for ‘The Bombshell’ a daring swimsuit with a deep plunging neckline and feminine ruffles along the front.

Which designers do you rate highly and why?

I have always admired Tamara Mellon.  She has her own distinct style, which is visible in each and every one of her designs and is she is truly an inspiration for women in business.

Tell us about your design process from concept, production and to the shelves…

So many things inspire my designs. Colours I see, beautiful sunsets and even red carpet couture. With every idea, every sketch and every design, I think about what statement the wearer wants to make. Ultimately, each design has to pass the litmus test to be true to the HoloHolo brand: is this unique enough, is it versatile and can the (more...)

We Spend 5 Mins with British Clothing Brand Yan Neo

Tuesday, January 27th, 2015

Shop Yan Neo :

How do you describe to people what you do and your design style?

I create contemporary chic for women to enjoy, indulge in and so they hopefully feel empowered and amazing having their Yan Neo pieces.

What sort of comments do you get about your designs?

Great essential wardrobe additions, lovely fabrics, great fit, very well made and must haves!

What is your background?

My 14+ years background in the fashion industry covers most aspects of fashion having grownup in the industry. I trained in tailoring at London College of Fashion and then on to a degree in fashion at Westminster University. Experienced in made-to-measure designing for private clients, styling and art direction of photoshoots, buying and boutique retailing. Now continuing the journey in creating the Yan Neo brand.

Which designers do you rate highly and why?

There are so many talented designers out there so it is difficult to choose but I admire Nicholas Ghesquière, Antonio Berardi, Alber Elbaz, Donna Karan, Vivienne Westwood. All of whom use fabric, cut and form in amazing ways. (more...)