With six collections under his belt, Craig Lawrence has been chosen by the Victoria & Albert Museum to be the next designer featured in their prestigious Fashion In Motion series; the V&A's catwalk showcase presenting an overview of his design career from graduation right up to a preview of his S/S13 collection (due to be presented this September at London Fashion Week).
Chatting to Dazed Digital, Lawrence, known for his unique perspective and use of unexpected materials (think sweet wrappers, gold foil, bin bags and metallic yarns) told us what to expect from his events happening today at 13.00, 15.00, 17.00 and 20.00.
Dazed Digital: So what exactly are you planning for the V&A?
Craig Lawrence: We're doing a show in the Raphael Gallery, a massive, great big hall, and it's going to be a walk through from my degree stuff through to last season's collection. We've selected our top four favourite outfits from each collection. It has been amazing finding all of my outfits and putting them all together on one big rail; I've knitted a lot of things! Hopefully I will be able to knit a preview of S/S13 for the V&A and have the last outfit as a preview of next season. I have to knit fast.
DD: Has looking back at your archives informed S/S13?
Craig Lawrence: Yeah, I think it has put me the mood to get back to my roots a little bit and to start to be more playful again as well as to experiment with materials. I feel like I have just checked myself. I can do the more commercial pieces but I like doing more experimental pieces the most. What I am planning will be a surprise – well hopefully it will be a surprise.
DD: Did you notice a change or movement in aesthetic at all?
Craig Lawrence: To start off everything was about making sculptures out of knit so there were more big shapes in the earlier collections and then I became less about the shape and more about refining the texture. I enjoy picking things – fabrics and yarns – that people already know and then bringing a different context to the material. It is always interesting with knitwear because you can use such a broad range of yarns, materials and fabrics and be playful and a bit humorous. Like, using barrier tape [S/S10] as I thought it was quite funny to knit stuff out of barrier tape for fashion week.
DD: What was it like to be chosen by the V&A to be part of their prestigious Fashion In Motion series?
Craig Lawrence: It's a really big honour to be asked by the V&A and a bit surreal because the previous designers featured are major, major brands. But it's a good time because of the knitwear attitude at the minute and I had the gold foil dress in the Ballgowns exhibition. And it seems like there is an excitement around at the minute because of the Olympics. I'm not actually excited for them myself, but everyone else is [laughs].