FASHION WEEK: DESIGNER Q + A

As globally fashion week comes to an end, we took some time to speak to loved LDC brands Sabinna, Chenchen and Coocve to find out what fashion week means to them. 

SABINNA

WHAT IS YOUR EARLIEST MEMORY OF FASHION WEEK?
My earliest memory of LFW is from my uni times. Back when I was studying fashion design at Central Saint Martins, I was always super excited for LFW and couldn't wait to look at the designs and catwalk shows. So much has changed since then and it's great to see all the new initiatives being introduced to the fashion month and fashion week in general. Today I am especially excited to see more and more ethical and sustainable brands being part of the conversation. 

WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO YOU TO BE A DESIGNER IN THE UK? 
London has always been a special place for me. I came here because I wasn't accepted at the university in my hometown that I initially applied for. I did not expect to get a second chance in London and when it happened I definitely embraced it to the fullest! I got to meet so many talented people here and got the chance to work with many of them. Being a designer in the UK means being able to learn from the best while also contributing to the overall change of the industry myself.

WHERE DO YOU FIND YOUR MAIN SOURCES OF INSPIRATION FOR YOUR DESIGNS? 
I come from a family of strong immigrant women with complex life stories. They are the main source of my inspiration - mixed with my multicultural upbringing and the influence it had on my taste and aesthetic. 

I can't choose one favorite piece but I am particularly proud of how we manage to bring together timeless silhouettes and bold prints while being true to our ethical values.

WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE TO SOMEONE ASPIRING TO OPEN THEIR OWN LABEL?
What is your purpose and your why? Answering these two questions is crucial. Everything else is a mix of hard work, luck, dedication, ability to learn from your mistakes and of course privilege. Everyone comes with a different story and that's why one advice won't fit all. 

THE TOPIC OF SUSTAINABILITY HAS BECOME SO PREVALENT OVER THE PAST FEW YEARS, ARE SUSTAINABLE PRACTICES EMBEDDED IN YOUR BRAND?
Our goal is to create ethical fashion without compromising our aesthetic and putting people and the environment at the forefront of everything we do. With a focus on bold prints, statement pieces and timeless silhouettes, we want to shift the perception of what sustainable fashion can look like. Transparency and personal involvement are at the core of the business. Through educating our customers on ethical fashion and consumption, we try to eliminate greenwashing and give them the power to make informed decisions.

 SHOP SABINNA

Hazel Jacket Denim
Hazel Jacket Denim
Hazel Jacket Denim
Hazel Jacket Denim
Hazel Jacket Denim
Hazel Jacket Denim
Hazel Jacket Denim
Hazel Jacket Denim
Hazel Jacket Denim
Hazel Jacket Denim

Hazel Jacket Denim

£270.00
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Celia Dress Flowers
Celia Dress Flowers
Celia Dress Flowers
Celia Dress Flowers
Celia Dress Flowers
Celia Dress Flowers
Celia Dress Flowers
Celia Dress Flowers
Celia Dress Flowers
Celia Dress Flowers
Celia Dress Flowers
Celia Dress Flowers
Celia Dress Flowers
Celia Dress Flowers

Celia Dress Flowers

£280.00
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Stronger Together T-shirt - SABINNA
Stronger Together T-shirt - SABINNA
Stronger Together T-shirt - SABINNA
Stronger Together T-shirt - SABINNA
Stronger Together T-shirt - SABINNA
Stronger Together T-shirt - SABINNA
Stronger Together T-shirt - SABINNA
Stronger Together T-shirt - SABINNA

Stronger Together T-shirt - SABINNA

£39.00
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Sabinna Delia high-waisted Trousers Checked - LDC
Sabinna Delia high-waisted Trousers Checked - LDC
Sabinna Delia high-waisted Trousers Checked - LDC
Sabinna Delia high-waisted Trousers Checked - LDC
Sabinna Delia high-waisted Trousers Checked - LDC
Sabinna Delia high-waisted Trousers Checked - LDC

Delia Trousers Checked - SABINNA

£180.00
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CHENCHEN

WHAT IS YOUR EARLIEST MEMORY OF FASHION WEEK?
London fashion week is a cool event to gather all the talented, creative and fashionable people in one place. Fashion week is the most exciting experience, but comes with a lot of stress, so many deadlines and a lot of hard work. When I was an intern, we only slept 3 or 4 hours per night a week on the lead up to a show. Before the Runway day, I hadn’t slept for over 36 hours to finish all the beading work for one look. But after all the hard work, once you see the beautiful models wearing the piece you have created, you feel like everything is worth it.

WHERE DO YOU FIND YOUR MAIN SOURCES OF INSPIRATION FOR YOUR DESIGNS?
I base my brand in London because it has so many art galleries and exhibitions to take inspiration from. A lot of my ideas come from visiting different exhibitions around London and using the artwork to create something new. Another inspiration is from unique fabric shops in Soho, they have the latest fabrics that inspire a lot of my creations. 

WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO YOU TO BE A DESIGNER IN THE UK?
The UK has such freedom, especially in London, people dress in all different styles. If you dress in something dramatic and over the top, people dont stop and stare, because in London it is normal. As a designer, you don't have to limit your creativity, you can design whatever you like, because there is a group of people out there who love what you design.   

 SHOP CHENCHEN

COCOOVE

WHAT IS YOUR EARLIEST MEMORY OF FASHION WEEK?
Fashion week is a time for newness, anticipation in the run up to events. Taking in and admiring the collections. How things are presented and showcased has evolved, being able to view via live stream and virtual shows was not available for me when younger.
I waited for the fashion magazines Vogue and Marie Claire to publish the highlights of the shows . I'm of the era of the 90's super models , I would imagine my creations being worn on the catwalks by the likes of Naomi Campbell and Linda Evangelista when I was younger.  

THE TOPIC OF SUSTAINABILITY HAS BECOME SO PREVALENT OVER THE PAST FEW YEARS, ARE SUSTAINABLE PRACTICES EMBEDDED IN YOUR BRAND?  
Certainly, It is so important to me, we manufacture in small quantities so that we don't over produce. Much of my design process is now created 3d virtually, manufacturing in the UK where we live reduces transportation. I'm always researching new fabrics for sustainable and eco ranges. Last season we began to make some of our pieces in Tencel and Bamboo. I have more pieces in the new season collection made in tencel twill. I'm always building on this and learning as I go. 

WHERE DO YOU FIND YOUR MAIN SOURCES OF INSPIRATION FOR YOUR DESIGNS?

I'm inspired by all that is around me. Walks in the countryside can inspire a design for a print, travel gives much inspiration, although I haven't travelled so much in the last year.My Favourite piece is the Mary-H-Wrap dress, named after my Gran (Mary Harbour Wright). It's a classic, versatile piece that imbues the brand vision for dresses to be worn season after season and all year around, it can be styled up or down for all occasions.

WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE TO SOMEONE ASPIRING TO OPEN THEIR OWN LABEL?
Love what you do, Be prepared to work 24/ 7, set your target market and stay true to your concept. 

 SHOP COCOOVE

Mary-H-Wrap dress in Black
Mary-H-Wrap dress in Black
Mary-H-Wrap dress in Black
Mary-H-Wrap dress in Black
Mary-H-Wrap dress in Black
Mary-H-Wrap dress in Black
Cocoove size guide
Mary-H-Wrap dress in Black
Mary-H-Wrap dress in Black
Mary-H-Wrap dress in Black
Mary-H-Wrap dress in Black
Mary-H-Wrap dress in Black
Mary-H-Wrap dress in Black
Cocoove size guide

Mary-H-Wrap Kimono Dress in Black

£119.00
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Satin Slip dress in pastel print
Satin Slip dress in pastel print
Patisserie print dress by Cocoove
Satin Slip dress in pastel print
Patisserie print dress by Cocoove
Satin Slip dress in pastel print
Satin Slip dress in pastel print
Satin Slip dress in pastel print
Satin Slip dress in pastel print
Patisserie print dress by Cocoove
Satin Slip dress in pastel print
Patisserie print dress by Cocoove
Satin Slip dress in pastel print
Satin Slip dress in pastel print

Rhaea Satin Slip Dress in Patisserie print

£95.00
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Isla Satin Maxi Dress in Nude/Oyster
Isla Satin Maxi Dress in Nude/Oyster
Satin sleeveless Maxi dress in oyster by Cocoove
Satin sleeveless Maxi dress in oyster by Cocoove
Satin sleeveless Maxi dress in oyster by Cocoove
Isla Satin Maxi Dress in Nude/Oyster
Isla Satin Maxi Dress in Nude/Oyster
Satin sleeveless Maxi dress in oyster by Cocoove
Satin sleeveless Maxi dress in oyster by Cocoove
Satin sleeveless Maxi dress in oyster by Cocoove

Isla Satin Maxi Dress in Nude/Oyster

£119.00
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Tencel wrap dress in Blue
Tencel wrap dress in blue
Tencel wrap dress in blue
Tencel wrap dress in blue
Cocoove size guide
Tencel wrap dress in Blue
Tencel wrap dress in blue
Tencel wrap dress in blue
Tencel wrap dress in blue
Cocoove size guide

Rita Wrap Dress in Midnight Tencel

£145.00
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