I dont even know why I bothered to finish Higher Education and get a degree when in the end, im stuck in the exact same job that I was doing aged 17, to support myself during my studies….
As a Young designer, its tough enough out there with competition all around, especially here in Paris. But add to the equation that Im not rich and there for have to work a part time job in retail to put food on the table and a roof over my head, and its a hundred times worse!
I was invited to participate in Bordeaux Fashion week, this spring. However Im needed 3 weeks before the big event for rehearsals - PROBLEM - I only have 5 weeks holiday a year from my retail job, with only 1 left between now and June (which I was taking for fashion week). Meaning that I dont have enough to dedicate to fashion week rehearsals almost a month before the actual show!
How is a young designer supposed to compete and to launch their career when such obstacles as the need to eat get in the way?
Its Ok for the richer fashion grads who have friends and families to support them financially while they launch their brands or do unpaid work experience in the big fashion houses, but where does that leave us, the grafters, the ones who work 3 jobs to make ends meet AND put together a collection every year? Dont we need some support and the chance to prove ourselves without being homeless?
I was ready to put my money where my mouth is and pay for the best slot during the shows, I was willing to travel Paris-Bordeaux and back, to take time off my paid job for that, to speed up production of my collection…but its not enough.
The thing is, this is not the first time. Many an opportunity has come up and then been cancelled for one reason or another, and do you know how hard it is to get an INTERVIEW for one of the many openings in the industry? Even knocking on doors and begging isn’t enough - trust me Ive done the research! - and doors just get slammed in your face before you even get the word “portfolio” out of your mouth.
Ive posted my CV on walls & cars outside fashion houses such as Galliano, Ive befriended the secretary, Ive written, emailed, called, knocked on doors, applied online, entered (and won) competitions, blagged my way into a designers atelier to speak with him, offered to work for free etc etc, and all for what? To continue working part time in a shop selling cheap clothing to thousands of tourists every day while wanting to tear my hair out!
As a young Scottish student, I couldnt afford to go to London to do an unpaid placement at a big fashion company, as an adult, i dont get placements because im not a student, and Its even harder to get a job when you dont have a great, fancy placement, no matter how much experience you do have!
So what am i to do? Resign myself to working in retail forever? Just get pregnant and have lots of kids to fill my life (the nightmare that Ive never wanted) because im getting nowhere fast? Or continue fighting the uphill struggle for the next God knows how long, only to resign to the idea of a mundane, working class existence in another 10 years? When even babies may not be an option :p ….
Tell me again why we are pushing teens into higher education year after year, when these are the prospects? And the more the years go on, and the next graduates enter the industry, the less chance I have….
I think you can safely say that Im feeling a little low today :s …
Been invited to show 12 models at Bordeaux Fashion Week in May!!!
Very exciting! & a little stressful i must admit, as this is currently what the line-up looks like: 3 finished items, 3 x 50% finishes 2 x 75% done and 4 not even begun, plus accessories and only 2.5 months to get it ready while I am only free part-time to do it!
Anyway its a good kind of stress and will be worth it in the end :)
Atelier Versace Spring 2014 ft Lady Gaga.
Beautiful collection but does it remind you of anything? My Last collection for example? lol
Funny how designers can come up with the same concept and ideas (such as hooded, backless dresses) despite never having collaborated. This is how trends come about though, designers pick up from similar inspirations and Voila! a trend is borne.
The same happened last year with Georges Hobeika who’s Haute couture show featured neck-ruffs, something which features in my current collection which we are putting together, in the workshop, as we speak. A collection which I designed from my hospital bed in March of 2012.
Its very interesting to see such ideas turn up in the wider fashion industry, as no one can really explain exactly how it happens. I guess its all about social circumstances and whats going on in the world that inspires designers and artists who accidentally produce visually similar work.
The hooded dress has worked so well for me over the last couple of years, being very popular with my models and clients, that it will continue to show up in my work for the foreseeable future where as it may fall off the face of fashion tomorrow for all we know :p
Chinese Fashion Accessories: LIVE! turtles, fish and lizards in key chains and necklaces.
Although illegal, even in China & despite international attention from animal cruelty organisations, these accessories remain highly profitable because people keep buying them! Apparently wearing animal skins is no longer good enough & live animals as accessories are a great novelty to some despite the fact that within a day, most of the creatures die while being worn - NICE huh? Watch your fashion accessory slowly drown, suffocate, dehydrate or starve to death in your very own hands!
Building modern homes from Plastic bottles, bear cans, tyres and mud - fully self sustainable, off grid housing capable of surviving in the hot desert sun & frozen winters or during tsunami season in India…Why are we not all building these? As the idea was developed, the design improves and now these buildings are quite beautiful and made from 100% recycled materials, and stand in harmony with the planet rather than fighting and destroying it.
“What do beer cans, car tires and water bottles have in common? Not much unless you’re renegade architect Michael Reynolds, in which case they are tools of choice for producing thermal mass and energy-independent housing. For 30 years New Mexico-based Reynolds and his green disciples have devoted their time to advancing the art of “Earthship Biotecture” by building self-sufficient, off-the-grid communities where design and function converge in eco-harmony. However, these experimental structures that defy state standards create conflict between Reynolds and the authorities, who are backed by big business. Frustrated by antiquated legislation, Reynolds lobbies for the right to create a sustainable living test site. While politicians hum and ha, Mother Nature strikes, leaving communities devastated by tsunamis and hurricanes. Reynolds and his crew seize the opportunity to lend their pioneering skills to those who need it most. Shot over three years and in four countries, Garbage Warrior is a timely portrait of a determined visionary, a hero of the 21st century.”
Greenpeace move to name and shame fashion brands who use un ethical and environment destroying chemicals, flushing them into the global water - Growing publicity for the detox campaign is helping make real change :)
Inspirational images which gave me to mood for the November 2013 shoot.