Harry and Polly, Draw In Light Design duo Harry and Polly have known each other for a lifetime, quite literally, after meeting in a West London hospital in 1985 and embarking on a friendship that has seen them, walk, talk and even go into business with one another. Since graduating from the University of Brighton in 2008 with a degree in Textiles for Fashion with Business the pair then went on to form Draw In Light just a year later. Based in their studio in East London the designs combine intricate silk screen prints with fashion forward designs that are stocked in Liberty of London, Young British Designers Online and Sid Concept Stores.
What does British fashion mean to you? How does it stand out from the rest of the world? Harry: I think British designers have quite a lot of freedom to be uncompromising with their design aesthetics, which brings out new ideas. British designers seam to be stubborn with their vision, I like that. Polly: British fashion to me is a product that is designed, produced and sold within in country. That fact that it is possible to do that here is brilliant. British people have a fearlessness and arrogance unlike many other countries. What is your first fashion memory? Harry: Fancy dress with Polly, when we were little we used to go to a hippy festival that our mum’s ran a creche at. The festival put on a fashion show and we had to make outfits out of bin bags and gaffa tape. Polly: Good old Campus, being on the catwalk modeling our own creations in silver lipstick. That was a real moment I thought I was Kate Moss. What’s your favourite thing about Britain? Harry: The combinations and juxtapositions of different influences here everyday, the traditions vs the complex multicultural society, the city and its changing architecture vs the countryside, the way art and music are available to anyone in London if they want to see it. Polly: Amen. Place to Chill… Harry: Polly’s pool with beautiful view over the downs, or Victoria Park by the fountain on a sunny day (minus the building works). Polly: Mount Noddy, my Parents house. My dad always say’s “if god had an address it would be Mount Noddy”. And last , because we can’t resist…. Fave British Beach? Harry: BRIGHTON!!! Polly: East Head, West Wittering.
Atalanta Weller Originating from Gloucestershire, Atalanta Weller earned her heels by studying at the prestigious Cordwainers at the London College of Fashion before going on to work with Gareth Pugh, John Richmond as well as designing the shoes for Henry Holland’s first House of Holland catwalk show. Now set up in the heart of Hoxton, Atalanta’s high concept, sculptural designs standout amongst her shoe contemporaries, fusing exaggerated shapes and innovative designs.
Who, in British fashion, do you find really inspiring? My contemporaries are definitely the most inspiring people to me, we are constantly challenging each other. What, to you, sums up British street style? Individuality What is your first fashion memory? Mum’s glamorous fashion choices of the ’80s Favourite places in London/ Anywhere in the UK? Bar…The Lamb on Lamb’s Conduit St Restaurant…Ciao Bella on Lamb’s Conduit St Culture Fix…The V&A Place to Chill…Home Place to Party…Anywhere as long as I’m with friends
Simeon Farrar After training in Fine Art and painting for over ten years, London based designer Simeon Farrar has now turned his artistic hand to fashion design. Simeon’s background in art forms the basis of all his designs and his creative eye oversees the whole design process from conception to manufacturing, and as many of his prints are washed before the dye has had time to dry means many of his clothes are completely one of a kind. His graphic-print tops, accessories and ‘Kate Mouse’ T-shirt have won him not only a legion of fans but also the New Generation Award at London Fashion Week no less than three times.
Who, in British fashion, do you find really inspiring? Vivienne Westwood is a constant inspiration mainly by way of her approach to her art. I also like JW Anderson and Jonathan Saunders’ current collection is absolutely fantastic. How does British fashion stand out from the rest of the world? I think British fashion has always done it’s own thing and that for me is so inspiring. You just have to walk down any busy street in London and see how British fashion stands out. It’s full of individual expression, people borrowing from all sorts of influences and making it their own. There’s so much crossing over from music and fashion and I think that blend really characterises our style here. It brings about a sort of DIY style that is constantly fresh. What is your first fashion memory? I remember having some really cool t-shirts when I was a kid. I would team them with some tan cord flares and Superman trainers, that was in the 70’s so they’d be right on trend now. I was probably better dressed in the first 10 years of my life than the second 10 years. As soon as I started dressing myself it all went a bit wrong for a while. I remember with a cringe a certain paisley shirt faze sweeping though our school, I think it was influenced by The Cure, I’m not proud of that. What’s your favourite thing about Britain? I think my favourite thing about Britain is it’s multiculturalism. I think we’re pretty lucky to be living in an environment like that. The Cream Tea is my other favourite thing about Britain. And last , because we can’t resist… Fave British Beach? Favourite beach in the UK is a tough one as I love so many. The best would have to be the Pembrokeshire coast. The beaches are just massive and you can walk along the coast for miles and miles. One in particular was Whitesands near St Davids. The best place to watch the sun set. It’s perfect, I loved it there.
Katy Bell, Lost Property of London After graduating from Central St Martins in 2006, Kent born Katy Bell went on to form Lost Property Of London in 2009. Quite literally taking the concept of lost property to a new sartorial level, Katy collects abandoned fabrics and transforms them into fashionable yet practical objects of desire which is reflected in the brands ethos of ‘remembering to look for the beauty in everything’. With eco chic being at an all-time high Lost Property Of London stands out amongst the hessian crowd with Liberty of London, Vogue and Elle all coveting her range of ‘upcycled’ bags.
Who, in British fashion, do you find really inspiring? Margret Howell for understated luxury. Also, I saw a film presentation featuring the ever-evolving Burberry at the British Fashion Awards, which blew my mind, so Christopher Bailey too. What does British fashion mean to you? Setting trends but always holding on to a sense of elegance. How does it stand out from the rest of the world? I don’t think anyone else can capture the same unique, quirky style a true British eccentric can. What, to you, sums up British street style? The wide-ranging mix of styles, from the preppy Chelsea to the edgy East. You don’t have to travel far in London to witness an array of wonderful inspiring styles. And last , because we can’t resist…. Fave British Beach? Brighton, with memories from my art foundation years.
Zoe Jordan, Irwin & Jordan Zoe Jordan originally started out in the sharp-suited world of a city trading before finally succumbing to her love of design in 2007 when her fashion label Irwin & Jordan was born. Adhering to the Leonardo da Vinci school of thought that ‘simplicity is the ultimate sophistication’ Dublin born Jordan’s designs feature Savile Row tailoring and clean cut silhouettes with these masculine influences being muted by the soft feminine details that punctuate her designs. Currently available in key global stores including Harrods and Harvey Nichols and boasting the likes of Sienna Miller and Helena Christensen as fans it’s no surprise that WWD have named Irwin & Jordan as one of 11 designers to watch in 2011.
What does British fashion mean to you? How does it stand out from the rest of the world? British girls are the queens of nonchalant style! What, to you, sums up British street style? Brogues and tweed. What is your first fashion memory? Aged 3, being found hiding behind the curtain in mums high heels and pearly with my glass, chatting away pretending to be at an adult drinks party! Favourite places in London/ Anywhere in the UK? Bar…E&O Restaurant…Le Petite Maison Culture Fix…Cork street galleries and the Royal Academy Place to Chill… Best friend Kate’s house Constable Burton, Yorkshire Dales Place to Party…Glastonbury! And last , because we can’t resist… Fave British Beach? Croyde Bay, used to surf there when i was about 15.