LCF Bachelor Graduate Show

Dazed talks to four talented London College of Fashion students about their collections, inspiration and plans for the future...

Fashion Incoming
Naoya Nakayma
It's that time of the year again; Graduate Fashion Week! All over the country, with a focus on London, art colleges release the latest crop of talented and creative students into freedom. Three years of hard work reveal itself on the catwalk, and Dazed Digital went to the London College of Fashion event to speak to a few representatives of the next generation fashion designers...

- Amber Siegel -
 
DD: How do you feel now after completing your degree?
Amber Siegel: It all feels very exciting to have seen the fruits of many years of toile come to a gratifying end, yet slightly surreal that it’s over so quickly, after so much anticipation...
 
DD: What inspired and influenced you?
Amber Siegel:The collection is based on finding beauty in collision, exploring clashing and complimenting texture.
The oil Bird concept stems from the desire of combining structured silhouette, intelligent tailoring and dynamic and interactive textures, techniques and fabrics, all while confined to a more commercial practical environment. The collection’s early realisation is looking at the marriage of light and dark, wet and dry, shiny & matte, successful juxtapositions. The collection exaggerates a masculine silhouette, with dropped shoulders and broadened waistlines. Narrow tailored trousers compliments luxurious coats and hand-knitted jumpers add to the feeling of indulgence and comfort.

DD: What are you planning to do now?
Amber Siegel: I am one half of Baartmans and Siegel and we are in the process of starting a luxury menswear label. We meant while at Viktor & Rolf in Amsterdam and were united in our belief of beautiful craftsmanship and imaginative design. We would like to describe ourselves as modern-traditionalists who’s work focuses on beautiful fabrics that seduce, and shapes that are accessible yet distinctive. While our work subscribes to traditional elements of English heritage tailoring, we combine these aspects with modern luxury. Our AW capsule collection shall be stocked at Harrods this Winter 2010, as part of the new initiative, Harrods Launches. Recently we have been involved in menswear projects supported by Colin McDowell and Esquire magazine, for our Spring/Summer 2011 collection inspired by the science-fiction write Jules Verne.
 
DD: Your collection focused on tailoring, do you see that as the very essence of menswear?
Amber Siegel: One of the aspects of menswear that I find invigorating as a designer is the defined lines, rules and practices that are set within menswear. I take great comfort in the challenge of creating stimulating garments within these parameters. Tailoring does underpin menswear in the sense, that for Baartmans and Siegel, design is about the construction of shape, and purposeful building of components, to enhance the wearer and interact with the wearer. While we always like to incorporate, looser, more fluid forms within our collections, fundamentally structured tailoring is the fundamental cornerstone of all of our collections. Crafted structure and beautiful finish does not always have to be associated with restricting, dated or constrained tailoring, but more of a base for experimentation and imagination.


- Naoya Nakayama -

DD: Congrats to graduation, how does it feel?
Naoya Nakayama: Thank you, it was just amazing. I've worked for this collection for the whole of this year and I felt I could finally finish it in a really good way. This was the first try for me to present such a professional collection, so there were lots of problems and accidents but i could learned from these problems and develop my self and collection.

DD: What inspired and influenced you?
Naoya Nakayama: My inspiration is 'a frozen moment of object destruction and creation'. I wanted to present that moment on the clothes, showing the process of object creation. With this main concept, I got inspired by the well known architect Zaha Hadid, mixing her futuristic architecture design detail with classic clothes shape to present my collection.

DD: What's next?
Naoya Nakayama: I am looking for my next step now. I'm getting ready to join new competitions, at the same time applying to an MA and job hunting. I would love to get more and more experience in fashion industry to develop my design skills.

DD: Gold is glamorous but the trench is a classic and almost mundane item, what brought those two elements together?
Naoya Nakayama: As I said I wanted to mix Zaha's futuristic design with classic clothes detail, so I wanted to put something different on my coat.  I was looking for a futuristic material for the coat, and I found gold fire blanket at an outdoor shop, so I tried the sample and it came out really great. the gold really match with the coat color, and also that material is suitable for my concept. That's why i used them...


- Yuco Kamiyama -

Dazed Digital: Congrats on graduating, how does it feel?
Yuco Kamiyama: Thank you very much. I have been very exited about the whole of my final year. Although it was not easy, I learned lot of things as a fashion designer. I feel my life as a fashion student in London was gone very very quickly. However, it is obvious that I still have so many things to learn as a professional, so I will keep studying in the industry.

DD: What inspired your collection?
Yuco Kamiyama: Basically, for my collection, I was inspired by a children novel written by Michael Ende called ‘MOMO'. The main idea is ‘A GIRL IN A MEN’S JACKET’, which came from a style of Momo, an orphan girl who wears an over-sized and tatty patched men’s jacket. I love the relaxed feeling of the style as well as the genderless look and the youthfulness. I worked with classic suit fabrics, such as herringbone, pin stripes, or hound-tooth check. Most of the main yarns are very tweedy, this is because I am always pursuing something warm and textured look.

DD: What's next?
Yuco Kamiyama: I am trying to find a full time job in fashion industry in London. I am hoping to join in a design studio, while, I am also interested in colouring. I would like to learn much about it. As my final project in my current course, I am designing an accessory line. I might try to sell these accessories into some shops in London. Now I am looking for a studio in which I can use some special knitting machines for production. I actually have a very small brand of accessories, 'Oui', in collaboration with a friend. Even if I have a full time job in the future, I would like to keep my personal creations as much as I can.

DD: You seem to have spent a lot of time sourcing heavy fabrics, which ones did you use and why?
Yuco Kamiyama: First of all, all of my heavy fabrics are knitted by myself, so I was sourcing the yarns. Due to my concept/ inspiration, I was looking for some tweedy and warm feeling for my knitted fabrics. Therefore, literally I chose a lot of 'tweedy yarns' (in which some small wool bits already mixed when its spinning). Secondary reason is most of the knitting by tweedy yarns shows less knitting stitches than plain yarns.This is very important to make a sort of fake feeling, for example, the pin-stripe fabric can look just a heavy-woven fabric. Additionally, in terms of garment construction, some fabrics needed to be heavy and stiff, because some garments are based on a tailored jacket. However, I tried to make them lighter by mixing very fine yarns as the part of jacquard stitches/ stripes.


- Steph Goynes -

DD: Congratulation on your graduation, how do you feel now?
Steph Goynes: I can't believe the three years have gone so fast, after building up to our graduate collections for so long I'm elated to be finshed, but also apprehensive to jump into the big wide world!
 
DD: what inspired your collection?
Steph Goynes: My inspiration was Native American Basketry, with the idea of converting traditional weaving techniques into knitwear. The vibrant patterns formed in the weaving process inspired the Jacquard designs, and the surface texture of baskets themselves some of the other pieces.
 
DD: What are your plans for the future?
Steph Goynes: I hope to undertake some freelance work whilst I continue at my current pacement with Sibling
 
DD: Your knits were quite ethnic in prints while tops seemed abstract in the print - how important is art to you in terms of reference?
Steph Goynes: I was fascinated by the wealth of information surrounding the diverse culture I researched and looked to all aspects of it's history for inspiration. Throughout Native American Art all crafts convey a strong message for the ethos of the culture and I loved that about the traditional basketry - baskets were woven to tell stories and each was unique to the maker. It was the vibrant approach to life that I wanted to reference from this art in particular.
 

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