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Louise Gray Womenswear S/S12

Tweed, patchworks, volume and strong colours were all present in a collection that was both simple and exciting

Louise Gray is well and truly known for her out there approach to fashion with a definite mindset that clothes are fun, and this collection was no different from the Scottish born designer. While all of her trademarks were in there, patchworks, updated tweeds, woven fabrics, volume and plenty of bright colour, there was also something that felt like it was a little calmer this season from Gray, who has been sponsored by Cotton USA for three consecutive seasons. A layered twin set opened the show, made up in a tweed looking woven fabric, followed by sequinned tops, chiffon blouses, again with more sequinned detailing.

Then came the multiple layers, multiple patterns and highlights including PVC elements adding a shot of shine and lucidity. As the show progressed the applique detailing got stronger, with clear plastic flowers stitched onto a number of pieces, looking quite childlike in some ways but also giving that consistent bit of fun. Tops were boxy and bottoms were looser and flowing, or contrasting that completely, were form fitting and tailored. Bomber jackets made a brief appearance as ever and the show closed with a number of beaded pieces, something that we have been seeing throughout a large number of London's designers.

Dazed Digital: Where did you get the ideas for all the various prints from?
Louise Gray:
I went through my wardrobe and was looking at all the 60s pieces in there and the prints that appeared on them. Thats where the two pieces came from, and I looked a lot at making everything as simple as possible but with as much print and detail as possible.

DD: How did you look to achieve that simplicity?
Louise Gray: Mainly through making sure that although each look seemed to be made up of many garments it was in fact pretty much just one piece. I added in the chiffon that kind of veiled the pieces to give that impression. When you take it apart and put it on a rauil its a T-shirt, a shirt, a dress and a jacket.

DD: Where does that want to simplify it come from?
Louise Gray: Thats how woman like me dress. Simple but at the same time exciting.

DD: What were the black and white contrasting prints on the back of the dresses?
Louise Gray: It was actually a money print that I had done myself. I just thought it was quite a fun thing to do as I am in London and money seems to be a hot topic at the moment. If you can make your own money then thats really fun.

DD: Was there any one inspiration that ran through the show for you?
Louise Gray: Not really, there wasn't one particular idea, I was referencing a number of artists I had been interested in, but I also went back to my archive. I pulled out a lot of things that had been in my MA show and reworked elements of them.