Saturday 17 September 2011

After the Catwalk

My broadband isn't very high speed so the live stream kept stalling and the Daks show video, now online  has been edited. So, perhaps, I missed something, but I could only see 3 bags in the catwalk show of the 10 pieces that I was asked to make. They were a looped white leather shoulder bag, (below) a  coiled red rope shoulder bag and a large circular coiled red rope bag (above).

Sadly, they didn't use  the 2 leather piped coiled rope shoulder bags, a  large and a small  looped leather bag, or the 3 rimless hats!

I was not given any idea of how many pieces might be used and I certainly did not expect them to use them all. But, they responded so enthusiastically to everything,  that I  had imagined some of the other pieces might have been used too. So, for me personally the catwalk show was disappointing.   Obviously for Daks the clothes are the most important thing and the accessories secondary  but I  still hope these other pieces will get an airing  one day.  The thought  of them never being seen or used by anyone  seems too wasteful of both materials and my energy! But, at least, I can now show you some of the other pieces.

Thursday 15 September 2011

Extreme Looping and Coiling

For the last eight days I have only felt the wind on my skin on the short walk from the house to the studio. I haven't shopped I haven't cooked (the 'kitchen god' did both)  I have hardly slept and  I haven't mowed the grass ('kitchen god' doesn't do mowing).  The looping and coiling marathon I have been engaged in ended last night and my hands and arms now feel strangely liberated. They seem to want to wave langorously about in the open air but I won’t let them as the neighbours and their pets would be unnerved.

The last package has just gone. With  luck it's contents will be seen on the catwalk at Somerset House in London on Saturday morning at 9am in Daks Spring Summer 2012 show for London Fashion Week. You will be able to watch the show live or later here: 
It was never intended to be a race against time as I had set aside the whole of August to do the work at a nice leisurely pace. But, the leather cord that was ordered for me to work with from a good sustainable supplier in the USA met French bureaucracy at Roissy airport, and a shipment that should have taken 5 days ended up taking nearly 5 weeks. As I don’t  import or buy materials for my own work this is, fortunately, not something I  normally have to deal with.

I suppose the moral of this story is don’t try to do anything that requires a French bureaucrat to work in August because they, like most other sensible Europeans, "vamos a la playa”. It is only those countries driven by a protestant work ethic that don’t take advantage of the sunshine and school holidays to spend time with their children. A report out this week comparing children in Spain, Sweden and UK came to the conclusion that British children were the least happy because they felt they didn’t get enough time being with family and friends or doing things out of doors. 

I cannot tell you much more about the actual work I did for Daks, until the show has happened, except that they were looped and coiled hats and bags. It’s supposed to be a surprise. But the picture hints at  what I made and despite the rush I really enjoyed doing it. Challenging and collaborative, the work required  both my technical and design skills and I  had the pleasure of working  with Flora Hely Hutchinson at Daks, whose attention to detail and support were superb. 

Unfortunately I cannot go to the show as I don't have a cat to walk and, more importantly, "vamos a la playa"!