My Brighton Fashion Week Experience
By Lora Steen
In early March this year I started the Dv8 Fashion and Design course. Fashion was something I’d never really considered getting involved in but as I was unemployed at the time and had always been told I had a creative flair I thought, why not!
I’ve been pleasantly surprised since starting and found myself getting really engrossed. In May (2012) Dv8 organised work experience for me with designer Louise O’Mahony – a perfect way for me to get my foot in the door.
Louise O’Mahony is an upcoming designer who specialises in bespoke bridal wear, custom costume and 1950s inspired fashion. She works from her home studio in a beautiful 500 year old farm house. It was amazing, I felt privledged to even be in the house!
This was Louise’s first time exhibiting her work at Brighton Fashion Week, so she needed an extra pair of hands for a couple of days. I was set a mixture of tasks including hand sewing, beading and sticking down rhinestones on a dress.
I found the experience very rewarding as not only did it improve my skills/give me new skills it gave me a real taste of a designers lifestyle and how much effort they put into their work.
As a thank you Louise bought me a ticket to Brighton Fashion Week: Frocks Show. I was thrilled! This would be my first time attending a fashion show, two new experiences in one week, not bad at all.
There were 12 designers exhibiting their work, including a collection made from completely recycled products (balloons, babies dummies, tampons, tires etc) by Walter Raes. They were all outstandingly outrageous, I found it so inspiring, a few months ago if someone mentioned fashion I’d associate it with the copy cat high street look but now I realise there is so much more to it than that, it is an art form if anything, a way of expressing yourself and being creative, there are no rules.
(Picture above: garments from Walter Raes – Upcycled Wonderland collection)
It wasn’t just the clothes that baffled me, it was the whole show, I couldn’t believe how much effort had been put in to every last detail; the lighting, visuals, music (there were even live singers!) choreography, props.
The best moment for me had to be when Louise’s collection came on, just because I’d seen how much effort she’d put in with my own eyes (and because some of my work was up there too! ) I actually felt quite emotional when she came up after, I was so happy for her and to have been involved.
(Photo of Louise’s collection)
The show and work experience have both taught me a lot and changed my opinion on the Fashion Industry, and I hope to get even more connected with it.