All posts tagged denim
London’s hottest denim whizz-kids, Martha Marques and Paulo Almeida, are back and thanks to the wonderful people over at NEWGEN and Topshop we were treated to their beautiful show in the Portico Rooms at Somerset House on Saturday. For Autumn/Winter 2013 the frayed hem was the order of the day. Never ones to shy away from double (or even triple) denim, entire looks came without a single neatly finished hem and a new answer was presented to the problem of lengthy trousers – simply rip a few inches on the inside leg. Rolling your jeans up is so passé darling…
Marques’Almeida’s Spring Summer presentation was filled with groupies: a staggering number of girls sported the designer duo’s signature denim dresses and platform shoes. Staying true to their loyal following they expanded on their celebrated rebellious aesthetic to offer a lighter and breezier look than their previous collections. “We wanted it to feel really flowing and light,” Portuguese-born Central Saint Martins alum Paulo Almeida told 1GRANARY.
They experimented with new shapes, textiles and colours to produce soft and feminine feeling diaphanous dresses, sheer skirts, light-weight knits and denim separates. Their signature grunge-aesthetic was still felt but Marta Marques explained: “we looked more at the late 90s and early noughties grunge and urban style, as well as what I would wear back in the day when I was going on a night out. Like, spaghetti dresses and cargo pants in a cleaner and fresher colour palate.”
Moving away from a strictly denim collection they added applique flowers and more colour: lilac, bright-white, navy and green. Their soft tactile knits were true to their oversized and relaxed style, as did their play with chiffon fur adornment to flowing jackets. Marques’Almedia’s homage to their youth may have been their most girly collection yet but it remained true to their understated and undeniably cool core.
Text: Lucy Morris
Marques’ Almeida is one of the hottest young London fashion brands. For the debut collection the designers’ duo created the story of youth and raw effortlessness style of the 90s with ripped denim – in a way you’ve never seen it before. They immediately gained sympathy of the fashion editors, attention of the Fashion East, and Opening Ceremony, Desperado in Tokyo and Joyce in Hong Kong as their stockists. But the starting point of the story was MA at Central Saint Martins, which turned the couple into the true fashion collaborators.
Marta Marques and Paolo Almeida both graduated from CITEX Fashion School in Portugal. They moved to London in 2009, gained experience at Vivienne Westwood/ Anglomania (Marques) and Preen (Almeida) and went through one of the most intense and amazing experiences possible for a fashion designer – MA at Central Saint Martins. We visited their studio located between Shoreditch and Haggerston, and asked Paolo and Martha to share some memories from CSM
How have you first met?
We met in 2005 when we started our BA in Portugal. We went through the BA doing individual projects. We always had something to say about each other’s work, but had individual paths, it was all separate in terms of work until the MA.
Selling a dream.
Please tell us about your collection.
My collection was a summation off all the work done on the course. The idea started from the very first project and then has been further developed through the time on the course. My designs are fabric led. I embrace the natural movement of fabric to create immaculate tailored pieces that are both sophisticated and stunning in simplicity. I am always trying to give the ease to my pieces, so they can float around the body. I chose the denim as a very brutal, rough fabric, which is for many others is associated with tough workwear clothing, but in my perspective, I saw the possibility of that humble textile to be used in more elegant dramatic pieces as this fabric has natural softness and fluidity in it. I have started with the basic denim shirt, which I transformed into the oversized asymmetrical coat and later dresses. The idea of patch working came from the study of the 60’s brutal architecture. Inspired by the picture of Lara from Dr. Zhivago, I decided to use velvet, which is a very luxurious fabrics compared to workwear denim. I carefully bonded them together. Moreover, this inspiration led me to the second shape: A-line tailored skirts, which were introduced in the second part of my collection. I work as if with a large brush, but at the same time I give attention to the details and finishings. Small tight collars, zips and vents were very engineered in a way that they were glued rather than sewn. All the pieces were finished inside with velvet seam sealing tapes.
How did you end up on MA course?
Did you always wanted to do fashion design?
I wanted to do so many things, but for me fashion is only one pathway, where I can feel myself free to do anything. Search for inspiration and being inspired are the most exiting things I believe I had, have and will always have in my life.
Louise is fun, her arguing is harsh, but very, very funny.
Tell us about your time on MA. What was the most fun and what was the most difficult?
Louise is fun, her arguing is harsh, but very, very funny. The difficult is to stay calm and keep going no matter what.
In your opinion, what skills you need to be fit for MA: technical, pattern cutting, organizational, thick skin or easy attitude?
You have to be a dreamer
What is the most valuable lesson you learnt from Louise Wilson?
Listen, but stay true to yourself and who you are.
What would you recommend to BA students who wants to apply for MA course?
Did you do any internships or work in the industry before? If you have, tell us more about your experiences.
I’ve done some internships, I’ve done some jobs, but I don’t see the reason to speak about this, as always only the last thing matters and where you are now.
Would you like to start up your own label or would you prefer to work for another company.
The decision of the pathway to chose is always a result of a series of consequences, and most of them are not really in your power. We’ll see how it goes.
What’s for the future?
Future… you can’t predict, that is the coolness of our game.