I was recently invited to attend the Young Fashion Designers Awards by Joanna Marcella founder of the UK’s Fashion Designer’s and Craft maker’s Young Designer Award and FDC Collections at the Pullman London St Pancras, part of the Pullman hotels.
There were some fabulous designers at the event. I was lucky enough to interview some and use my journalistic talents, as well as take a look at their fabulous designs – I was truly inspired!
The day started off with the first designer and CEO of House of Solana. The designer’s fashion label was around ladies of a fuller figure and plus size. I had a chance to interview the fabulous designer – Shasha Walton, who was from the stateside.
Here is a synopsis of the interview.
Tell me more about your designs?
I dress for the plus size woman.
When did you start designing?
I started at 16, sewing and then I went to college and studied fashion design, I also studied abroad in Paris.
House of Solana is about inviting everyone into my mind and when I think of plus-size woman, I think of beautiful and bodacious and that’s what I want to dress for. Anything a smaller figure can wear I want to create. I try to interpret that into whatever I make, whether it is for the office or casual and not just I can’t find these jeans or I’d really like a cute skirt, I want to make it really beautiful for them to be comfortable.
How do you find everyone else’s view on the plus size – are they welcoming?
It was really welcoming here because plus sizes are really making a break-through and breaking grounds. So my theory is when I see a plus size women on the board, their still little bit smaller. I want to show that I am dressing real women. Real size women to say ok if she can wear that and she has these hips and she has that shape, then I can wear that. So I definitely want to dress everyone because there is always a woman in my line thats an everyday woman out there.
And are we breaking that barrier of having thin models on the ramp and how are we breaking it?
I do, especially when I see models making it and breaking it through to fashion weeks and also seeing them model lingerie and people saying that it is very beautiful and they are having commercials. But the plus-size hasn’t reached the tv yet, but that will come too. So with my breakthrough I want to show that women who wear my line regardless of size or height, they can look really beautiful or be on an ad and not the perfect plus size, so I want to dress the imperfect as well.
Sasha was so delightful to interview, she had this pleasant and confident demeanour, that I could agree with all her sentiments and really emphasise with her line and the plus size model. She was very passionate about her designs and I am sure she is going to do well. I can’t wait to see more plus-size models on the catwalk!
I also interviewed designers Ya-Sheng Yu – Paradiso and Stine Sandermann – SANDERMANN.
Here is the interview with Stine Sandermann.
Tell me a bit about your brand?
My brand is Sandermann and I started it this year in March and it’s based on a concept on up cycling, using pre-consumer waste.
Were you always passionate about saving the environment?
Well when I started studying, I was kind of ignorant and I didn’t know anything about how poluting the fashion industry is. Not always, but after my studies I gained greater insights into how the whole system is put together. I then studied a masters in London which was specialising in sustainable textiles. That really helped me learn a lot about sustainable textiles.
Can you tell me more about your collection and what its made of?
So its made of wool and the wool is sourced from local Danish sheep and the wool that would have normally be burnt and the sheep are reared not for their wool so in fact the wool would have gone to waste. It’s kind of coarse wool and breeders think that it is can’t be used for anything. I source local companies and source whatever I can get my hands on and the leftovers.
I replied that it was so good to interview her and how ethical she was as a brand. I totally respect designers that not only bring their designs but also are helping the environment at the same time. She was truly inspirational.
You can see some more amazing designers below.
Charlene Mohamed – KC Dainty – loved the way Charlene used slightly risqué jewels and chains to create fashion designs for the modern woman.
Huan Yang – her designs were Tibetan inspired and focussed on the confident man
Ya-Sheng Yu – Paradiso – His designs were like out of a movie, I can see Jenifer Lopez in one of these outfits. The below dresses are very bridesmaids inspired and would be fab for a wedding or special occasion.
Shelby Fuller – Elizabeth An’Marie – her designs were using knits and making them an essential part of everyday, comfortable clothing
Deborah Glasgow – Biblos Glasgow – she had a gangster vibe to her designs
Deborah Majen – Deborah Majen Designs – her designs used monochomatic tones, a trend that is here to stay!
Candace Crawford – Cocoabelly Costumes – Candace’s designs were inspired by her love for belly dancing and were very colourful and energising
I thank Joanna Marcella and FDC for inviting me and giving me the chance to interview so many talented designers. Want to know more? Then take a look at FDC >