5th February: Receiving samples from factories
I am using leather for the first time this season and have just received the samples from the factory – so happy with the results! The leather pieces are all reversible with hand-foiled print on the suede. I love it when you start seeing the new samples and the collection is suddenly very real – can’t wait to see it on people!
10-12th February: Premier Vision in Paris.
Even though we are in the middle of AW15, I still need to go to Paris to select fabrics for SS16. It’s a bit weird as you are so preoccupied with current season, but it’s very exciting!
17th February : Meeting with set designer/lighting
Today we visited the presentation venue at the beautiful Mary Ward house to discuss ideas – the room we were using is very dark, with wood panels covering the room, so lighting is key. I want the audience to feel like they were transported to somewhere else, so it was a challenge with the limited space and budget, especially when you are a young designer. In the end we decided to go for sunset style lighting and use big rocks!
19th February: Hair and make up test
We had some amazing sponsors: make-up by HD Brows, hair by Bumble and Bumble and Only Fingers and Toes for nails. We have worked together before in my previous season’s presentation, and they are so great backstage as they are always so energetic!
20th February: Casting/fittings and last minute tweaks
One more sleep till the show! Today is the third and final day for castings – every girl is different, so it is important that the right girl can fit well into the clothes. I wish that I had the luxury to choose a different girl for each look, but each girl has a couple of changes, so the running order also has to be logical as we cast the girls. Everything is finally coming together and I hoped to catch some extra sleep tonight, but things always take longer than you realise — even though we finished the collection early enough, the last minute changes take time!
21st February: Show day!
It is always exciting and incredibly nerve-wrecking to do a show, however, because we had a 2-hour slot and people filled the room endlessly, we did the show 6 times! Everyone was happy and exhausted by the end, and I treated my team to a special dinner to celebrate at the White Rabbit in Dalston.
23rd February: Preparing for showroom in Paris.
Although the show is over, there is still the showroom for the buyers to see in Paris – this time is just as important as the show. In the week after the show, the collection has to be taken to Paris and we are busy again, with preparing for the showroom. Things like costing and pricing each piece in the collection have to be done, and we need to ensure that each garment looks immaculate. It is an ongoing cycle with the seasons — as we prepare for production of AW15, my head is also thinking about SS16!
25th February: Milan
I was selected as a designer to represent the UK for the Grazia’s young designer competition, so I was invited to go to Milan for the event. It was only one night, but I’ve met so many great people. Especially spending time with the Chief Editor Jane [Bruton] and Fashion Director Charlie [Miller] was so much fun. Drinking wine until 1am, but my flight is at 8:30 tomorrow morning!
27th February: Staff training in stores.
At the same time, the SS15 collections are in store, so I need to visit the stores to do staff training. I explain the story behind the brand; the collection, and each piece: why they are unique and how it’s worn, etcetera.
I went to Harvey Nichols and the shop at Bluebird today. It’s interesting to see how different customers buy the garments, and to hear their feedback.
So happy to hear that some of the styles are already sold out, so reorders might be placed.
5th March: Paris showrooms
Today is the first day of the Paris showrooms! My train was super early, so when I arrived, I had time to go over the appointment schedule with my sales agency Rainbow Wave. The venue is central, near Opera, and so beautiful! As I don’t have to stay at the showroom the whole day, I have time to enjoy Paris (especially the food!) and also make headspace for next season’s collection!
13th March: Preparing for production
Waiting for orders to be finalised, but at the same time, we are working on the preparation for the production. Every stage is very important. Smooth production results keep the delivery deadline, so that’s when finally people can see the collection in store!