ROYAL COLLEGE OF ART
In my final year of my Postgraduate degree at Royal College of Art, I contributed to the charity Yadayna. This business model inspired me to give customers an alternative solution to fast fashion by standing up to the exploitation of cheap labour. My aim is to create garments and fashion textiles that put people and the planet at the forefront, whilst supporting the communities with which I collaborate and am inspired by. I aim to create high-end fashion textiles that project a transparent supply chain whilst also supporting communities in the Middle-East. As the hand-sewn embroidery aspect of fashion is labour intensive, a high-end market is therefore justifiable. There is an emerging shift in the market, where good quality, unique and longer lasting apparel with an authentic background, is becoming more attractive.
The initial visual research I have explored for this personal project is the landscape, territory and environment of the Middle East. This theme focuses on culture, people and location. The hand-made quality and process of detailed embroidery techniques draws together my inspiration from the landscape, environment and the members of the community. This enables me to consider the impact of my pieces and draw attention to the issues of the displaced people in developing communities.
My work, which is predominantly for fashion, consists of traditional forms of embroidery used in contemporary and inventive ways. I use hand embroidery and beadwork, as well as Irish embroidery. I tend to use detailed and traditional techniques that are now becoming less widely used. My intention is to discover innovative ways of applying these traditional skills. These skills are also transferable, as I aim to challenge typical fashion standards, giving artisans in the developing world opportunities by recognising their value, and producing ethical textiles for fashion.
I have selected three successful techniques after developing them throughout the year to take forward as garments to visualise my textiles on the body. This has also given me the foundation of the business model I aim to pursue.