Fiechter’s “Monks of The Monastery” echoes through the old ST John’s church, while one after the next model slowly strolls down the catwalk, showcasing a six-piece collection.
It could not have been a more fitting location and scenery, featuring a huge golden altar, high ceilings and Christian stained-glass windows depicting Biblical individuals and stories.
Photographer Mikey San
Irish designer Jana Simone showcased her new faith and religion inspired collection. The 23 year-old studied fashion and textile design at Ulster University Belfast where she acquired her bachelor’s and master’s degree. The name “God’s Creation” references her incorporation of nature as an inspiration. Overall, each individual piece and the collection as a whole are very personal to herself, as she is a dedicated Catholic and was strongly shaped by her upbringing and surroundings in a small secluded Irish town. She is keen to broadcast that she respects every kind of religion and culture but aimed to express herself through this collection, therefore focusing on her personal belief system, Christianity. Accordingly, myriad forms of iconography, be it in hand applied embroidery or the extensive accessories like lace veils, crosses, crowns, or jewellery to name a few.
Naturally she also drew on historical influences as Britain’s history has always been closely intertwined with religion.This can be seen in A massive old rosary necklace from roughly 60 years ago belonging to her grandmother. Lots of crucifixes in various sizes were part of every piece. Moreover, Simone uses a great variation of textiles to create movement and consciously aimed for an older touch with a multitude of carefully hand embroidered parts.
She regularly watches old catwalk shows from infamous designers like Versace, Alexander Mc Queen and Vivienne Westwood online in order to stay up to date with trends in the fashion industry. Another source of inspiration are fashion magazines and of course social media like Instagram and TikTok. So, what can we expect in the future? Jana tries to do each collection differently, depending on what sparks her interest at the moment. With the previous collection being all about sustainability for instance, it is apparent that this young and passionate designer has considerable far reaching ideas and is always eager to create something new and unique.
Moving between Rome and London over the last 18 months, Giulia Valeri of Ad Astra has been continually inspired by multiple sources. On the day, Valeri wears Ad Astra knitwear which typifies her approach to her collections: the white ribbed puff sleeve knitted blouse is accented by a multicoloured zigzag hem around the wrists and the neck of the blouse.
Choosing bold elegance, her collection is a dynamic conversation starter rather than a bold declaration of being present.
Photographer Joanna Mitroi
By combining tassels, bows and frills to standardised uniform of trousers or skirt and blouse, the collection highlights the malleability of feminine contours. A black mini dress is not simply that but embellished with a subtle flounce on the shoulder strip, thereby exaggerating the character and silhouette of an individualistic approach to this classic. Valeri's designs are simplistic, yet on a closer look rich in details and never boring. Every single piece is gorgeously figure hugging and favourably accentuating the female silhouette.
A constant theme throughout this collection are geometric bold cuts and colour pattern combinations, most prevalent in three designs merging a fiery red, nude and rosé tone. The unusual pairing with lavishly embroidered tassels in varying length make the pieces interesting and unique, adding an unexpected twist to their form. They especially come to retribution whilst in movement, steadily flowing in accordance to walking speed.
Structured knitwear that inverts with the corset, draws attention to the waist rather than restricting. Ribbed shirts feature adjustable sleeves, numerous fabrics are hold together by bows, and corsetry tops can be freely adjusted in width. Thereby, Valerie minimises stiff fabrication closures like zippers and buttons and allows the customer to individually contrive the pieces to their best comfort. This collection contrives new daring and fresh ideas by adding distinct twists to established silhouettes and forms.
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