The best part about being in London is that it doesn’t give you time to waste. It’s very cliché of me to say that there’s so much going on here, but one after another, there are so many events coming at you, it’s your loss if you can’t catch up with them. As soon as I was aware of The Shoreditch Fashion Show, with a pass or ticket, either way, I knew I had to be there.
I’m still in the process of getting to know London, but one thing for sure, Shoreditch has so much creativity to offer, and it’s going through a fast paced development. “Through the dark, light shall appear” is the show’s theme this year, which corresponds to the impression I had of the area. As exciting and phenomenal as the London Fashion Weeks are, the exclusivity of the event leaves us disappointed and alienated. However, if you could access the most innovative and talented designers, artists, and musicians simultaneously, without having to be Coco Rocha, you’d be at The Shoreditch Fashion Show.
Hosted by Offbeat in association with Batiste Shampoo, and produced by VIVID Fashiongroup, this year’s Shoreditch Fashion Show presents designers from internationally well known fashion colleges such as London College of Fashion and Istituto Marangoni. One cannot go wrong in a fashion show with the Welsh designer Julien MacDonald being the mentor of these designers. Aside from fashion, they presented sensational live music and inspirational art pieces at just £20 per ticket, which, compared to the priceless experience you’re leaving with, is worth every pence.
Opening up the show were the designers Christina Tiran and Victoria Rowley, graduates of the London College of Fashion. With a collaboration of feminine gown-like silhouettes and unexpected phallic prints, the duo already inspired the guests with their creativity.
The fashion show ended with Isabell Yalda Hellysaz’s collection, which has been showcased at the Stockholm Mercedes Benz Fashion Week and worn by Lady Gaga. Isabell flew over to London especially for TSFS, which made the finale much more meaningful and memorable.
More from the fashion show from designers Nicholas Wirth, Marcelo Yarussi, Maria Zhminko, and Rebecca Morter and Gemma Vanson…
The night was full of people from all kinds of fashion backgrounds, and had lots to share. Photographer Nirma Madhoo and I were lucky enough that we interviewed key figures of the night of which we are very excited to share with everyone!
Coincidentally, Aphra and her piece Composition X were both the first to capture our attention in the fashion show. As if to place you in front of a dressing room mirror, the sculpture starts to light up as you’re passing by. That’s exactly what Aphra intended to do: the sculpture draws you in with its detailed overlapping of geometric figures, slowly lighting up as you get closer to the censor at the front of the sculpture. Composition X welcomed us into the show by lighting up and flaunting its intertwined representation of ourselves. The mixture of these forms “represent life – the connection between you and me, an interaction” she told us. That’s why it’s so powerful in a space like the Shoreditch Fashion Show. Full of interactions and new relationships, she wanted to “[turn] viewers into active participants” with her piece, as said in the official programme of the show. Not only did it light up the sculpture, it ignited the viewer’s interest in an instant.
Check out the entire collection of her pieces at www.aphrashemza.com
Nirma and I couldn’t help but stop Danny from passing by. He was rushing past the crowd, but he definitely stood out. With his yellow beanie and statement-making sweater, we fired up questions about what he does. The pass around his neck loudly spoke for itself – makeup and hair director for VIVID fashiongroup. “The concept of the night is the light coming into the darkness” he described to us. It’s not an exaggeration to say that the result of his work has helped us understand the show much better. The white hairline on the models transitioning into their darker hair color was both a literal and an artistic way of depicting the sudden ray of light in the dark. His artistic process was aired on the projector throughout the night, and as the viewers watched the screen, they all had a chance to share his creative energy and passion. He expressed his excitement for the show as he said “Shoreditch went from a graveyard to a burst of creative culture”. His view exactly parallels the theme of the night “Through the dark, light shall appear”.
Check out Danny’s work or contact him through his website www.dannydefreitas.com
With a model profile, Ben stood a head above everyone else, but to us short girls, the pass that hung from his neck was at our perfect eye-level. Ben Adams and Daniel Jones are the directors of the Shoreditch Fashion Show, CEOs and Founders of VIVID Fashiongroup, and luck was on our side for the night when Ben said yes to the abrupt request for an interview. It didn’t come off as a huge surprise when he told us that he was a graduate from LCF’s Design and Pattern Cutting. His degree was a pedestal of his eye for scouting of the designers. It’s exhilarating enough to know that there are numbers of LCF graduates in the show, and to meet the man behind the job of gathering them all was beyond excitement. Even though I haven’t had the pleasure of meeting Daniel Jones, Ben’s partner, I learnt that his background in musical theatre has an enormous role in VIVID. TSFS was the place for VIVID to create a fashion stage with a theatrical touch, which came from the hands of these differently backgrounded directors. And by presenting these new, innovating designers to the crowd through purchasable tickets, The Shoreditch Fashion Show is known for its biggest strength, accessibility. “It’s a great opportunity for both the designers and the audience” he pointed out. It’s a win-win situation where the viewers have a more approachable take on fashion, and the designers have a wider range of press and crowd. As ambitious as the show was, he emphasized the cultural development that allows for the show to happen. “Bethnal Green is going through an agricultural growth. There is a creative spark”, he told us. After the show, we think we definitely agree.
All photographs by Nirma Madhoo