Saturday, 12 November 2011

Gaga goes "Gagalocious" for Rebecca Short

"Never in a million years would I have ever imagined I would be dressing celebrities, let alone one of the biggest fashion icons of all time; it’s a huge honour!"

Images Courtesy of My Daily 

We all know Lady Gaga is no stranger to making headline news with her eccentric-outrageous yet stylishly artistic vision of fashion, however in this instance, it was 'who' she wore that caused just as much intrigue as 'what' she wore, to spark an international frenzy from fashionistas alike.

Unbeknown to many, including the designer herself, the pop diva opted to wear the creation of an unknown British fashion design student, above and beyond the giants from McQueen to Armani, for her latest escapade. The extravagant oversized beige dress, with exaggerated shoulders, made out of the fabric neoprene (rubber), more commonly used for wetsuits; raised eyebrows and word began to spread very quickly to find out who was the 'talent' behind this unusual design.
Image Courtesy of Birmingham City University

It was the vision and artistic nature of Birmingham City University graduate, Rebecca Short, who stole the headline with her three dimensional experimental work focusing on shape and the female form, that would ultimately catch the eye of the Lady Gaga's stylist,  who asked to borrow the dress for the fashion icon to wear at a major press conference in Sinagpore, after she spotted the dress  on the catwalk of London's Graduate Fashion Week (GFW).

Image Courtesy of Rebecca Short

The star-studded dress was part of the final project for her degree. Made up of six pieces, she presented the collection at the event solely for the best BA graduate fashion design talent in the UK, in June this year. We had a chance to catch up with the young designer to share her creative visions for her work, future and amazing achievement to date; the dress she designed for Lady Gaga.
When and why did you choose fashion (design)?
My mum taught me how to use a sewing machine at a young age, so I was always attempting to make things for me and my friends to wear (often unsuccessfully). I really enjoyed textiles at school and carried this on at ‘A’ level where I became more and more interested in fashion. After starting my degree in fashion design, I knew it was where I wanted my future to lie. I love the quick moving, exciting pace of the industry, and I enjoy the fact that no two days are the same! 
What was your creative vision for the collection?
My collection was inspired by the concept of negative space and the works of artists, Rachel Whitread and Gordon Matta-Clark and minimalist artists, Donald Judd and John Pawson, whose work led me to experiment with a number of three dimensional draping and cutting techniques.
Aiming to produce a collection that is stripped back, clean cut, with the focus on shape and form, minimalism too was a key element. I chose a muted colour palette of grey and beige hues to compliment the Autumn/Winter season.     
Images Courtesy of Artsthread

What inspires and influences your designs?
I draw a great deal of my inspiration from architecture and from visiting exhibitions. 
Who or what has been your greatest influence on your work?
I really admire the work of Jill Sander, Raff Simons and in particular Calvin Klein whose work is always so beautifully clean cut, fresh and modern. 
How would you define your work?
Stripped back, clean cut placing the emphasis on shape and form.
Images Courtesy of

Who have you interned for other than “By Suzannah”? What have you learnt from those experiences? How will you apply what you learnt to your own work?
I carried out a number of interns whilst at university. The main one being, ‘By Suzannah’, a luxury womenswear designer, based in London, whom I now work for as a fashion design assistant to the head designer. I have also interned for womenswear designer label, ‘Harriets Muse’, and trend forecasting company, ‘The Trend Boutique.’ I strongly believe it’s extremely important to carry out as many internships as you can whilst studying, as it gives you invaluable first hand experience and a great insight into the jobs available; it really helps you to work out where you are best suited in the industry and helps put the skills you have gained into practise. 
What where your feelings when you discovered Lady Gaga chose to wear one of your designs and how has that impacted your career thus far? 
It was such an overwhelming and dream like experience! I feel so lucky to have achieved something like this fresh out of university; it makes all the hard work feel like it has been worth it! Never in a million years would I have ever imagined I would be dressing celebrities let alone one of the biggest fashion icons of all time, it’s a huge honour! 
With the fashion  industry and one of the best-selling artists of all time and fashion icon of the moment taking a sound interest in her work, it is clear Rebecca Short has a prosperous future ahead in design.  You can view Rebecca's work at  or follow her on Twitter@RebeccaShort98 or simply send her an email at

Monday, 7 November 2011

Iris Van Herpen...

"People who work for major designers tell me they don't have the time to develop new techniques. I want to give myself this time to do it, since nobody else will do it."

If this is Haute Couture at its finest then it could only be the work of Iris Van Herpen. A remarkable talent of Dutch origin, has made a name for herself to inspire revolutionary concepts to the professional methods to the art of fashion design. The avant-garde designer's use of 3D rapid laser prototyping techniques, to achieve outlandish and amazing accents adds depth and meaning to the concept of 'High Fashion', and notably, has gained critical acclaim from the international fashion press as 'Couture' at its best.  

A graduate from Artez Acadmey in 2006, Van Herpen completed internships with Alexander McQueen, Claudy Jongstra and Viktor & Rolf, before striking out on her own in 2007.  And since then, the 28 year-old's fascination to inspire and dream has shown her collections, 'Fragile Futurity''Chemical Crows','Refinery Smoke', 'Mummification', Escapism Couture'' at Fashion weeks in her native Amsterdam, London, Berlin and Paris.

"Fragile Futurity" 

"Refinery Smoke"


However, it was the Fall/Winter 2011-2012 collection, 'Capriole' at Paris Haute Couture week that has really catapulted the young designer in a league of her own as a designer of Haute Couture. Her interpretation of architecture and sculptural allure, that could be described as  'architectural fashion', was a reciprocal of beauty and regeneration of energies, mixing beautiful transparent sheets, organzas, leathers and wire and intricate fringing detailing the process of techniques and materials with dramatic appearances.


The young conceptual designer's reinvention of  form, combined with hand-made pieces and new digital technology to produce abstract designs using unusual materials to elaborately construct fashion that resmebles art as beautiful representations of futuristic elegance.

Although her creations are not wearable, massed-produced or functional, they are uniquely crafted pieces that are an expression of van Herpens' definition of how 'art' can be used to describe the 'unique woman and [extend] the shape of the feminine body in detail' and the challenge to creatively fulfill her "philosphy of re-evaluating reality because the notion of reality is just as subjective as the notion of art."