Posts in Celebrating women of colour
Reflective Narratives
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The business of fashion is very complex.

Getting the brand ethos right, the garments and how you align yourself in the grand scheme of things ie the fashion world is a lot harder than I had anticipated. 

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Reflecting on the brand and making changes today has led to a larger overall idea. One final push with the current collection due to the spring summer season being upon us. 

Hopefully this will in turn generate funds for a new collection. One that is more refined.  

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Some changes have been made to the name of a couple of t-shirts to make the narrative stronger. Each garment has a story behind it, which I hope to convey in the next couple of months.  

So back to the research drawing board, to the funding options and contacting micro-influencers.  

And in terms of the larger reflective concepts behind what I am trying to achieve is the 'ripple effect', a shift into peoples social conscience, to talk and debate about diversity and representation, why visibility matters and why everybody should champion it.

Website Regig Focus

This week really has been all about the website, touching up the photos from the shoot and deciding which image is to be placed where. Along with frantically figuring out how to get ride of certain elements to avoid too many clicks from image to the shop, from the consumer end, along with text appearing in places it should not.

There is something equally pleasing and frustrating when it comes to understanding the basics of web design but it is very satisfying when a simple click can change the aesthetics of what I envision. It is a big learning curve but one that is enjoyable for the most part. Usually because there is a solution or someone at the end of an email to help. Thank goodness. I just need to sort out the mobile phone set up so the text is aligned properly. 

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So really for the most part the next few weeks are going to be focussed on making the content of all my social platforms link up and make sense visually. 

In addition I have started on my new lookbook, which has had images placed into a temporary template but will need a lot of configuration I think as it was a bit placement impulsive image wise.

Adding the artistic elements will be fun. I have been researching and looking at fashion lookbooks by famous design houses to get a feel for what is common and currently on trend. Luckily for me they seem less clinical and much more about expression both in terms of mark making and the juxtaposition of images. It is much more exciting to me and feeds into my own creative aesthetic. 

So along side this and the Zines of the World exhibition this Thursday at the Truman Brewery on Brick Lane, which I will update you on. I will start to make some movement on the PR side of things. 

Like always, watch this space...  

 

Solution Focused Experiments

Since being back off holiday I have been trying hard to focus on updating my website i.e. Changing the layout, I have mentioned this previously. Well it started off ok but my computer is so slow and then I managed to unlink products, so clicking through on a product took you elsewhere or the page was not available. It was so frustrating to the point of turmoil. My obsessive nature made me persist but my brain was on rapid shutdown. However being stubborn helped as I managed to sort most of it out, just a few tweaks here and there are outstanding. The main issue now is whether to publish it now or wait for the new photos? Dilemma. I will come to a decision at some point. 

In the mean time I have printed a couple more sweatshirts. Being back in the print studio was the tonic I needed and reaffirmed that I am much more practical minded rather than the sitting and staring at the computer kind. Need someone to do all of this 'stuff' for me at some point. It kills my creative thread. But at this stage of the game I need to just swallow the challenge and get over the hurdle. So balance is key. Do the not so 'fun' elements of the business first and rewards myself with the artistic outlet after. 

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One off piece, which is being prepped for my label to be sewn in. 

I went to one of my favourite bookshops to see if they had American Vogue in stock yet. A rather ambitious hope. Obviously they didn't so I bought the UK issue instead and a thought struck me. How would they compare? Aside from volumn, that is the number of pages, I am wondering if one will differ significantly in terms of their representation of women of colour. Will one be more proportionate and equal than its counterpart? Time will tell but so far the British one is looking pretty promising.  

So my hope is that I will do a limited edition piece that will be an illustration of the women of colour shown from both magazines. I have a vision in my head I just need to get drawing and see what happens.  

I am also playing about with the mistakes that happen. With screen printing you can never fully control the output but that is the beauty of it I believe. Recently I accidentally forgot to stretch the sweatshirt properly so the print was disconnected at the bottom. At first I was annoyed with myself for rushing and not prepping properly but then it allowed me to think of a solution, which was to add a boarder. Hence the one off sweatshirt above. With a small print run this is ok and can allow for individual outcomes, maybe on a larger scale not so. We will see as it might be fun to have a small subsection that has more of an individual aesthetic to it especially for people who like one of a kind pieces. 

Another mistake that has got me thinking was a misprint on an off cut piece of sweatshirt jersey. I just sat looking at it and started to think about collage. Could it be layered up or would it be better as a single on the sweatshirt? I want to use different coloured threads too to offset the visual impact. We will see what the outcome is.  

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Off centre - note to self, line up properly  

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Relayer the pieces for a different collage effect? 

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As a single centre placed image? Maybe too small? Could extend the lines like I did the painting for the exhibition? 

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Who knows at this stage. I will experiment and see what strikes a cord.  

Anyway on with creating a collage and then some drawings for a possible t-shirt print or two. 

 

Back to Basics

Knowledge is power and when you do not have enough knowledge it can be debilitating. This was a sad fact I discovered recently. I thought I knew who my customer was, the vision I wanted to create with the brand and marketing campaign but only on a superficial level it would seem. From talking to three different people in the fashion know how, the same questions came up: who (designer) would your designs sit along side? Who is your target market and how are you going to appeal to them?, for example. Questions that I partially knew the answers too. Gosh naivety has played a large part here along with my creative brain kidding me that being artistic and wanting to get the garments out there would be enough. The simple conclusion is NO! So much more is required and now the penny is beginning to drop. I cannot drive my vision forward if I do not know who I am aiming for. It is like shooting an arrow at the target blindfolded. I have been somewhat blindfolded. 

So what now. Back to basics as the title suggests. Researching designers who I can align my brand with. Take inspiration from their shoots, lookbook and Instagram feeds. Although I took onboard some advice from my friend who is from the fashion world and she positively commented on how I was documenting via my instagtram feed, so that is progress. I will take even the smallest crumb of success or praise at the moment.  

Entrepreneurial life is hard and I have some faults I need to address. Seek advice from sources close to you. They have the knowledge I do not, so utilise it. Being stubborn and trying to do everything independently is not working and causing stress as I feel overwhelmed. So reach out is imperative. This I am going to do now as I want this to work more than ever. 

Gosh when I think about it, this idea has been there since university, which I have mentioned previously. So I want it to work, even on a small level, a good turn over. I mean I do not want to be the next Jeremy Scott but I want the business to be viable and worth the effort I have put in so far. Even if I have been spinning on a fixed point. 

Back to the designers of inspirations which can align myself with. And getting ready for the photoshoot. Most things are in place now. Photographer and makeup artist booked. Models confirmed. Just the looks need sorting now and final decisions regarding the location for the shoot. 

So in the mean time back to researching and gathering inspiration.  

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Moodboard 1 - ideas of how I would like the shots composed.