The pioneering sneaker brand hosted a three-day event at London’s Hoxton Docks – here’s what you missedConverse
For those lucky enough to score guestlist, last week (February 15) saw Dazed and Converse team up with a host of exciting artists for an exclusive three-day event at London’s Hoxton Docks.
The event was a part of Creative All Star series, an ongoing programme from Converse that aims to offer classes to young people in the capital that encourage creativity across sport, music, and art. Here’s everything you need to know.
THE LABEL TOOK OVER A HUGE WAREHOUSE
…in London’s Hoxton Docks. Inside, attendees could sip on drinks and munch on Nando’s to a backdrop of laidback house and techno, courtesy of NTS radio. The room was divided into a series of Converse showcases, peppered with creative workshops and customisation stations. In one section, Converse sneakers old and new lined the walls of the venue, while another section was dedicated to talks, and islands where you could upcycle old T-shirts by screenprinting onto them.
A BUNCH OF RISING LONDON CREATIVES HOSTED IDEAS WORKSHOPS
Kicking off proceedings on Thursday was an ideas workshop hosted by an all-star crew of Dazed 100 alumni that included Catty Taylor, a 3D designer and creative director who makes digitised fashion bootlegs of looks by Vetements, Gucci, and Off-White; London filmmaker and photographer Bafic, whose hypnotising visuals inspired by modern city life have attracted the likes of Neneh Cherry, Gucci, and Louis Vuitton; rising menswear designer Bianca Saunders; and club night maestros Pxssy Palace.
Sort of like creative speed dating, each artist was given a table of 8-10 students, who had the opportunity to ask them questions about their careers, before swapping tables onto the next person.
ATTENDEES HAD THE CHANCE TAKE PART IN CUSTOMISATION SESSIONS
With upcycling and sustainability hot in focus, customisation workshops stretched across the entire three-day programme, ranging from trainers to tie-dye socks and shoelaces. A highlight was Duran Lantink, who is known for slicing together leftover deadstock into brand new hybrid garments. The Dutch designer – who’s also the guy behind Janelle Monae’s pink, vulvic trousers on single “Pynk” – headed up a customisation workshop, where a lucky handful were given the chance to customise their own pair of Pro Leather trainers with anything from teddy bears, old leathers, glitters, and fabrics.
Also hosting a set of workshops was Royal College of Art alumni and menswear designer Feng Chen Wang, where a lucky handful of attendees had the opportunity to customise their very own pair of Chuck Taylor’s.
SINÉAD O’DWYER DEBUTED HER NEW FILM
London fashion designer Sinéad O’Dwyer showcased a special presentation of her sculptural silicone creations, which address the female body and beauty standards one belly roll at a time. The pieces were displayed hanging from the ceiling or atop silica-coated surfaces, with digital cutouts that displayed snippets of Dwyer’s latest film, Silicon Valley. A collaboration with digital artist Agusta Yr, the film – intended as an abstract exploration of silicone, the primary material she uses, and female beauty standards – opened with a virtual sunburst sky, before zooming into plasticine-faced rendering of four women wearing the collection.
TYLER, THE CREATOR SHOWED UP
Yes, really. In what was meant to be a 30-minute Q+A session (it ended up stretching over two hours), the musician behind Grammy award-winning album IGOR spoke about his creative process, style (“I feel like people in the UK are way more attractive and have better style than people in America”), and the Grammys, where he questioned the use of the ‘rap’ and ‘urban’ categories for their racist connotations.
Speaking of his own personal style, which swings between a grandad-skater and the Andy Warhol-wigged, pastel bellboy style of his alter-ego IGOR, the artist told audience members the key to his irreverent look: “pink, slacks, afros, gold teeth, and shorts.” Read a more in-depth piece on Tyler’s Q+A here.
OCTAVIAN AND LAVA LA RUE HOSTED PARTIES
No event would be complete without music, and Converse certainly delivered. On Friday night, south London rapper Octavian hosted a party with his friends Sam Wise, DJ Fira, Cosmo Webber, and more also on the decks.
After hosting her very own ‘Goofy Hearts Club’, a post-Valentine’s Day clubhouse-of-sorts with a zine-making workshop earlier in the day, west London singer and Nine8 collective member Lava La Rue closed Saturday’s events with a ‘Lava Rave’. This saw the Goofy Hearts Crew (read: Lava and co) play a nostalgic set by the likes of Yves Tumor and fellow Nine8 member Biig Piig.
CONVERSE LAUNCHED A NEW SNEAKER
To top things off, Converse launched its “Twisted” Classics, a capsule collection made up of three new styles, aiming to subvert and reimagine some of the label’s most recognisable shoes, like the classic Chuck Taylor and the Converse Pro Leather. Now available globally in stores and online, the series includes the Run Star Hike, which looks like a combination of the Converse Pro Leather and One Star, and the Twisted Heritage, which features an oversized version of the Converse logo on its side.