Wednesday, 27 April 2011

Couture Fashion inspired by the British Engineerium

I will be displaying a brand new couture piece at Brighton Museum and Art Gallery during June. My piece will be joining 8 other Brighton couturiers work, which will coincide with Brighton Fashion Week 2011.

The official blurb is as follows:

Renaissance Creative Design Ltd
in association with
Brighton Fashion Week and Brighton Museum and Art Gallery
'Couture Brighton'.
June 1st – July 3rd 2011

'Art and fashion collide in a glittering display of luxurious opulence'

Using the city as a source of inspiration, Brighton’s best known and dynamic fashion designers have worked in collaboration to produce nine new gowns that demonstrate the skill, opulence and art of the Couturier. The gowns will be staged in the costume gallery at Brighton Museum against a beautiful mirrored backdrop to create an installation of breathtaking beauty and exquisite detail.

The designers selected have all been chosen because of their strong individual style and the attention to detail in their work. Working to a brief that has asked them to create a one off piece based on a Brighton landmark or historical reference, the works produced will use a limited colour palette with a personal accent colour and will clearly demonstrate the techniques, skills and house style associated with each designer.
The gowns featured will demonstrate the use of bias cutting, printing, bead work, ribbon work, sculptural knit, corsetry, leatherwork and feathers to produce a spectacular and original exhibit using the finest materials.

The featured designers are;
Ailsa, Joanne Fleming Design, Juliana Sissons, Mazelino, Paul Milana, Chrissie Nicholson-Wild, Sarina Poppy, Renaissance and Suzie Turner 

The reference for my design is the British Engineerium. Currently the Engineerium is under going a full restoration so my research has been largely second hand. There are some pretty cool you tube clips which give me a closer look, so much of my inspiration comes from the myriad of memories I have going to Steam Rallies and Railways which were an obsession for both my father and grandfather. My father was an engineer and mechanic, and he spent many an evening tucked away in the garage tinkering, and I see myself as following in his love for mechanics...just that I use fabric instead of metal. 

The Engineerium was built in the Victorian era, which is one of my main points of reference for my design, which ties in nicely. The Victorians sought to re-mould the world and nature to their own design, it was about motion, power, travel, convenience, comfort and had a thundering optimism for the future. I intend to catch that spirit in my piece...motion, clean lines, structure.
I can also see parallels with the Victorian restrictions of society and gender roles and the corset which for me also represents a feeling of strength, protection and beauty. 
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