Next
Stories

London College of Fashion

This year London College of Fashion BA graduates joined forces to present united and immersive collections that fused the students’ different specialisms with a digital catwalk exhibition. The message was one of diverse and united beauty. Meet the collaborative class of 2018.

PHOTOGRAPHY AND WORDS JOHN WILLIAM


ROB PHILIPS
Creative Director for the School of Design and Technology

In a handful of words… how would you describe this graduating cohort?
Strategic, immediate, responsive, flexible.

What was the theme for this year’s show?
Visual language / digital vernacular.

And why?
We felt it was time to speak the global language of digitization that social media have laid the foundation of, but in a more poetic and refined way.

Tell us about the choice to use a lot of masks in the show.
Today’s trends for beauty norms are quite repugnant and lazy. We wanted to obliterate these types of socially constructed, ‘like’ worthy, homogenised beauty standards. To do that we first had to take the focus of the person, so we chose to build upon them. It’s fun to express an aesthetic beyond the clothes alone and I was heavily inspired by the work of Bob Recine and Irving Penn.

And so the choice to keep the make up neutral was about focusing on the individual faces?
We wanted the contrast of raw to constructed and neutral to decorated. So there was a minimal and maximal look in any one model.

With the hair there was a mix of braids on models of all ethnicities and lots of natural afro hair.
I love hair, it’s another window into who we are. I wanted a raw version of this – something natural, messy and irregular.

What is the LCF School of Design and Technology saying about beauty?
That standards should not be standard. Or not to have standards at all.  As individuals we make our own beauty and the beauty we demonstrate is a very varied panorama to look at.

Casting always feels very important for the LCF BA show.
Lynsey Fox did the casting for me this year with the simple directive of ‘variety: characters a plenty’. I wanted models who all looked completely different and had a certain depth to them.

In your role as creative director … how have you noticed students’ notions of beauty shifting over the past few years?
They have gone from creating very constructed looks to destroying them, and then using their skill to create more challenging silhouette dynamics, which often takes a lot of time and technique as it’s not the norm. They definitely don’t adhere to prescriptive gender or glamour norms. This involves unpacking what society tells you to do and having the confidence to go against it.

What do you find beautiful?
In terms of the physical, a part of the body that tells me a unique story about that person. It terms of a look or style, something that shows honesty.

And what do you find ugly?
Something that is hiding or disguising one’s truth or beauty and shows that they just follow the crowd. Vanity is vile – demonstrating that you spend hours on physical appearance is not alluring.

Today’s trends for beauty norms are quite repugnant and lazy. We wanted to obliterate these types of socially constructed, ‘like’ worthy, homogenised beauty standards.


ALEXANDRA VINCENT
Menswear Designer
ELLA FRANCES BUTTERFIELD
Textiles Designer
YILE YU
Jewellery Designer

Describe your collection in 3 words.
Dysfunctional, fragile and kinetic.

Who is your biggest inspiration?
Pepper LaBeija and cat ladies.

What do you think is beautiful?
Alex: Diversity, acceptance and curiosity, and also archival imagery from documentary footage.
Ella:  Abandoned objects attract my attention and reveals a sense of underlying beauty.
Yile: to have confidence to be yourself.

What do you think is ugly?
Apathy, doubt, unwillingness and condescendence.

How do you want to change the fashion world?
Alex: By creating and encouraging more opportunities for multidisciplinary collaborations, informing people and pushing them to question and change their over consumption habits.
Ella: To see and encourage the production of slow laboured fashion within the industry and to support the process of more cross-disciplinary collaborations. I think it’s exciting when two or more individual’s styles and concepts merge and evolve into unexpected results.
Yile: challenging different aesthetics.

I love hair, it’s another window into who we are. I wanted a raw version of this - something natural, messy and irregular.

We felt it was time to speak the global language of digitization that social media have laid the foundation of, but in a more poetic and refined way.


ALICE PONS
Womenswear Designer

Describe your collection in 3 words.
Bold, oversized, elegant. 

Who is your biggest inspiration?
Phoebe Philo and her collections. 

What do you think is beautiful?
Something that looks simple but that you put a lot of effort into.

How do you want to change the fashion world?
Making it less competitive and stressful. I still have to understand how, because it is also the pressure that makes you work harder and create beautiful things. 


ALEXANDRA ANDERSON
Knitwear Designer
AMELIA SKARPELLIS
Textiles Designer

Describe your collection in 3 words.
New Generation Punk.

Who is your biggest inspiration?
Adwoah Aboah and Noel Fielding.

What do you think is beautiful?
Anything can be beautiful if you want it to be, its how you look at it.

How do you want to change the fashion world?
We want to encourage people to celebrate advancements within the textile industry and appreciate the scope of possibilities that fun and vibrant textiles brings to today’s fashion.


VALIA KAPELETZI
ELIN KARACAGIL
Textiles Designers

Describe your collection in 3 words.
Sculptural, experimental, intriguing-materiality.

Who is your biggest inspiration?
Neither one of us have one specific person in mind. Working on this collection together we have been inspired by one another and we have finally been able to fuse our two disciplines.

What do you think is beautiful?
Abnormal textures, light interaction and the mistakes made in the making.

What do you think is ugly?
Greed

How do you want to change the fashion world?
Slow it down and give more space for the creative process.


THOMAS OSCAR CHANDLER
Menswear Designer

Describe your collection in 3 words.
Men at sea.

Who is your biggest inspiration?
Anyone in a uniform.

What do you think is beautiful?
Contrast.

What do you think is ugly?
Clutter.

How do you want to change the fashion world?
I don’t think there’s a way for one person to change the fashion world it comes from new waves of designers. It’s the generation that you are in.  


 

More Stories
Previous