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Archive for the ‘Interviews’ Category

Teatum Jones, AW16 at London Fashion Week

Tuesday, February 23rd, 2016

The Teatum Jones AW’16 collection shown on Saturday night was, in my eyes, their best yet. As recent winners of the International Woolmark Prize it’s clear that Catherine Teatum and Rob Jones have hit their creative stride in spectacular style, garnering the recognition that this label has long deserved. After seeing the show I can absolutely see why the Woolmark judges chose Teatum Jones as their winners. This design duo have always been very textiles innovation focussed, specifically developing most of the fabrics for each collection. With the inspiration for this collection coming from the Foxford Woollen Mill, they delivered stunning pattern and texture through their attention to textile detail which perfectly blended historical reference points with Teatum Jones’ view of modern elegance.

Teatum Jones, AW16 collection at London Fashion Week, Blink London, fashion blog, catwalk show review

Teatum Jones, AW16 collection at London Fashion Week, Blink London, fashion blog, catwalk show review

Teatum Jones, AW16 collection at London Fashion Week, Blink London, fashion blog, catwalk show review

Teatum Jones, AW16 collection at London Fashion Week, Blink London, fashion blog, catwalk show review

I caught up with Catherine Teatum after the show to gain some more insight in to the collection.

Blink: Is this AW16 collection an extension from your Woolmark prize collection, or was the prize collection an extraction from your plans already underway for AW16?

Catherine: The human story is what comes first so there wasn’t an order of creativity as such. That poignant human story then wholly influences patterns we looked at and fabric textures we want to create. So both IWP and mainline FW16 evolved at the same pace and because we have discovered new and innovative ways to use merino wool in our collections, it naturally spread across both. This is something that we will continue to do. We’ve unlocked the magic in this simple and natural fibre and we are excited to pursue those investigations.

Blink: The reference points for this collection feel very much about your Irish family background. How did Rob’s influence dovetail in to the story?

Catherine: The story was based on a woman Agnes Moirrogh Bernard whose life’s ambition was to use wool as a powerful symbol of hope for those less fortunate. She just so happened to be based in Ireland very near to my family home! Both Rob and I travel to the mills together and the process of creation is experienced together.

There a very beautiful thing between two creative people who know what the other is thinking and doesn’t question it – trust.

Blink: How did you come across the story of Agnes and the Foxford mill?

Catherine: My dad recommended that we go to visit it. Initially he took me there on a day out together last August 2015 and I was instantly captured by Agnes’s story. I went back a month later and spoke to the crafts people at the mill and then Rob and I travelled there several times throughout the development process. 

Blink: The colour palette felt far richer and brighter than I might have expected from the historical woollen reference point. What was your inspiration?

Catherine: Teatum Jones creates bold, exquisite fabrics that are married with modern, relevant shapes. We feel that AW16 was probably our most competent example of that to date. The inspiration to create these fabrics was inspired by the natural and unstoppable spirit of the Irish people in the story. Coupled with the incredible diversity in landscape textures that you find in Ireland.

Blink: The colourful sand catwalk pathway was beautiful. What was your inspiration behind that?

Catherine: We felt the sand was a poignant way to tell our AW16 story. Sand never stands still, it constantly evolves and each time the models walked and created a new impression in the sand, that seemed to perfectly reflect the journey of Agnes and the Irish people of Foxford that she worked so hard to provide a future for.

Blink: How do you think winning the Woolmark prize impact on Teatum Jones?

Catherine: It’s given us the opportunity to really pursue our textile innovation and development. To really discover what’s the next level of possibilities of wool. It’s also given us the opportunity to be physically present in store for every single one of our retail partners’ launches.

Blink: The knitwear in this collection seemed to play a stronger part than previous seasons. Was that a conscious intention?

Catherine: The rural Irish women would hand knit everything and it’s a skill that was passed down through generations. We wanted however, to create a collection of knitwear that hit every single wardrobe stoppable desire that our women needs and only use the finest merino yarn to create a these knitwear pieces.

Here’s some of my highlights from the show so that you can get a closer look at some of the stunning detailing.

For more from London Fashion Week, just look here. For more interviews then look here.

Enjoy! Lucy

meet Lucy Favell, founder of URSA London

Wednesday, December 2nd, 2015

URSA LONDON, online fashion boutique, new designers showcase, British fashion website, Blink London, Lucy Williams

To help celebrate their 5th birthday, we are posting about URSA London today, sharing this exclusive interview with founder Lucy Favell. Now incase you haven’t encountered URSA London (where have you been?!?) here’s a quick intro to this luxury online boutique, and to Lucy herself…

A personal love of discovering new designers inspired Lucy to create URSA, providing a platform of support for the new wave of emerging talent from the UK and Europe. URSA is now globally renowned for being the online destination to discover unique, fresh and exciting luxury fashion & jewellery (which is why we LOVE it), and over the past 5 years they have showcased some new designers who have now become huge fashion names. Another reason why we think URSA is so fabulous is that they support and promote sustainable manufacturing methods with over half of their featured designers manufacturing in the UK or Europe using traditional techniques. We are fascinated by the story behind URSA London and so we put some questions to Lucy Favell.

Lucy Favell, URSA London's founder

Lucy Favell, URSA London’s founder

Blink: I love the background behind your name. How did you come to that decision?

Lucy Favell: I’ve always been obsessed with the stars and constellations. I loved the strength of the name Ursa. It’s powerful, enlightening and inspirational, all at the same time. Also the fact that it is synonymous with the Great Bear, home to some of the brightest new stars in the hemisphere. URSA is home to some of the brightest new stars of fashion. It was the perfect fit!

Blink: What is your proudest URSA moment?

Lucy Favell: I am proud of everything that the team have achieved over the past 5 years. One thing that fills me with pride is the growing fan-base we have across the world, and all of the amazing feedback we get from both customers and designers.

Blink: Could you name some designers that you backed at the outset of their careers who have now become big names?

Lucy Favell: I am not afraid to take risks with my buying, and i am proud to see designers URSA supported first enjoying great success. Labels such as Soulland, E Tautz, Charlie May, J JS Lee, Imogen Belfield are all on the ascendant which is such a joy to see.

e tautz SS16

E Tautz SS16

Blink: What has been your biggest surprise at URSA over the past 5 years?

Lucy Favell: My biggest surprise in launching a UK online store is since the onset we attracted a global customer, in fact most of our customers are in the USA and Asia. We are excited to be getting more UK customers now as consumer confidence returns.

Blink: You are celebrating your 5th birthday today. Are you where you planned to be as a business by year 5?

Lucy Favell: I would be lying if i said 100% yes, however what we have achieved since launch is incredible considering we are still a wholly independent business. Running a start-up retail/tech business, everything is constantly evolving, and you have to keep evolving with it. I am incredibly ambitious and have exciting plans for URSA with more exclusive collaborations and new label launches in the months and years ahead.

Blink: What saying best sums up your approach at URSA?

Lucy Favell: always look ahead to the future.

Blink: How are you planning to celebrate your 5th birthday?

Lucy Favell: Our 5th birthday is such a milestone for us and to celebrate over the next 12 months we are launching a series of exclusive pieces created by our incredible designers. Starting this December with a unique diamond pendant created by Imogen Belfield.

Blink: What does sustainable fashion mean to you? 

Lucy Favell: URSA is the antithesis of fast mass-produced fashion from the high street. All of our designers work in a sustainable way, for every garment or piece we are able to trace where it was produced down to the fabric or materials. Over half of our labels manufacture in the UK, which we really support and want this to eventually become the norm in luxury fashion. Our discerning customers do not mind paying more for luxury fashion if it has been made to exceptional standards and will last. I love seeing pieces bought from URSA five years ago still being worn and still looking brand new. 

Blink: What styles do you find yourself repeatedly drawn to, season after season?

Lucy Favell: All of our designers have a distinctive signature, this is what makes them special, so I aim to capture this each season, mixing it with some fresh styles. The key for me is not to follow trends as this ensures that all of our styles will be investment pieces to be treasured for years to come.

V Jewellery Baguette and Hollow lobe earrings from URSA London

V Jewellery Baguette and Hollow lobe earrings from URSA London

Blink: What makes Ursa so different to all of the other online luxe fashion retailers?

Lucy Favell: Our curation of designers is what makes us so different, and as we are often first with new notable designers, customers are guaranteed to find something sartorially fresh and unique.URSA London screen shot

Blink: What from Ursa’s current offer would you most like to find wrapped up under your Christmas tree?

Lucy Favell: I love diamonds, so i am coveting our exclusive Imogen Belfield Diamond Star pendant to commemorate our 5th birthday! I am dropping plenty of hints!

Blink: Who is the designer that you are currently most excited about?

Lucy Favell: I am excited by all of the labels on URSA, all of our designers are consistent in creating pioneering collections each season, which keeps us one step ahead.  We have many new labels about to launch in the months ahead, I am very excited about that!

URSA London, the luxury online boutique

URSA London, the luxury online boutique

Thank you so much for the time you gave to us Lucy and happy birthday URSA! For more of our interviews with brilliant creatives, just click here. For more great posts about retail news, then look here.

Enjoy! Lucy

meet Hesper Fox, a new luxe loungewear brand

Wednesday, November 4th, 2015
Kristi Edwards, founder of Hesper Fox, nightwear, London Fashion Week, new British brand, silk, luxury fashion, fashion blog, Blink Lonodn

Kristi Edwards, founder of Hesper Fox

During London Fashion Week, aside from all of the ‘on schedule’ and official car park based events, there are lots of great additional shows, presentations and opportunities to discover new, innovative and exciting things. One such event was a small gathering at the Groucho. We discovered two new labels, Hockin and Hesper Fox. Both beautifully detailed and highly considered womenswear labels- but from very different angles, aesthetics and experience.

We’re starting with Hesper Fox. This is a new, London-based luxury lounge and sleepwear range which will launch this December. Each piece in the nine-piece debut collection effortlessly mixes and matches so you can create your own perfect combination. Personally, although the concept is about something more intimate, I think the kimono style robe would make perfect Summer daywear too…

The softly tailored collection is all 100% silk charmeuse, and is exquisitely detailed with french seams and mother of pearl buttons.

Hesper Fox, nightwear, London Fashion Week, new British brand, silk, luxury fashion, fashion blog, Blink London

Hesper Fox

Hesper Fox, nightwear, London Fashion Week, new British brand, silk, luxury fashion, fashion blog, Blink London

Hesper Fox

We met Kristi, Hesper Fox’s founder at the LFW event and she very kindly agreed to a quick interview.

Blink: What lead you to launch a luxury nightwear collection?

Hesper Fox: I decided to launch Hesper Fox following a light bulb moment one Christmas morning, amongst the champagne and early-start mince pies. My husband had given me a pair of silk PJs but commented that he had searched high and low to find me something that I (and not just he) would love; something bold and luxurious that sat away from the very lingerie-driven styles and the cutesy-pie printed sets that don’t feel so cutesy-pie post-teen.

Blink: What is it about silk that made you choose it as your main material?

Hesper Fox: The way is falls, how flattering it is, how beautiful it is to wear and how loudly it speaks of luxury.

Blink: Who is your style icon?

Hesper Fox: I am a big fan of strong, bold women who walk their own line. I don’t have just one as I have to confess my own style borders on schizophrenic – my head always says grown-up, minimal black, lots of denim and “keep it simple” (and that’s where I generally end up) but my heart LOVES a clash of print and colour. There are so many women I admire; Lauren Hutton’s beautiful pared-back 70s style, Katharine Hepburn’s chisel-featured androgynous look, anything Charlotte Rampling did or wore in front of a camera in the late 60s and 70 was perfect, Julianne Moore’s red carpet looks are pretty tough to beat and Cate Blanchett always strikes the most perfect balance between interesting and elegant.

Blink: Who do you see as you ideal client when you’re designing the collection?

Hesper Fox: A woman with an eye to quality, who likes a modern take on classic shapes and wants her at-home look to more closely echo what she shows the outside world – she doesn’t think that chic should stop just because the front door is closed.

Blink: What was your main aim when creating this collection?

Hesper Fox: I wanted to create a sleep and loungewear range that was most definitely luxurious, felt beautiful to wear and was comfortable to lounge and sleep in but also, that would work extra hard. I have designed the range using non-sleepy prints and bold, fearless colourways and have cut the shapes such that Hesper Fox will also hold some crossover appeal. A number of the pieces will comfortably undertake double-duty when paired with other ready-to-wear wardrobe staples, away from the comfort of home. For example, the Astrid shorts make an excellent, luxe beach cover up, the Eos trousers are lovely with barely-there tops for suppers out (but look just as good with a cashmere sweater), the Endymion robe is a perfect travelling companion – being silk, it rolls into nothing – and the Nyx camisole is great with a pair of denim shorts and some espadrilles for long, lazy lunches or as a layering piece with sharp tailoring for cocktails.

Blink: Where does the brand name come from?

Hesper Fox: Hesper is a girl’s name that I have always loved. It means ‘the night star’ or the planet Venus at night, derived from Greek mythology where the Hesperides was the collective name of the nymphs of the evening and golden light of sunset. I wanted to create a persona so I had to give Hesper a last name. I chose Fox because they’re nocturnal, very social, beautiful, fleet-of-foot and super-smart.

Blink: Is the label true to your initial vision or has it evolved and changed at all?

Hesper Fox: I had a pretty clear vision of how I wanted the brand to look and feel as I set out to create something that was a different to what was already on offer. I also knew I wanted Hesper Fox to have a certain tone of voice – I wanted it to be a grown-up and stylish but not to take itself too seriously – classic with a twist

Blink: What can we expect in the future from Hesper Fox?

Hesper Fox:  I am currently working on the prints and colourways for the next collection for AW16 and will work on introducing new styles next year also.

For more interviews, just take a look here.

 

Enjoy! Lucy

Molly Goddard, SS16

Tuesday, October 13th, 2015

I hope you enjoyed my post about meeting Piers Atkinson in Paris. Here’s another missive from our PFW trip, this time featuring Molly Goddard and her SS’16 collection. To help set the scene, here’s a video from the British Fashion Council of Goddard’s rather unusual LFW show…

Yup, that is a fashion version of a sandwich factory. I initially felt a bit kinda confused by this, not understanding the full story behind the collection. Without even delving in to show notes or esoteric motivations, the simple fact is that this was the perfect atmosphere for Goddard to show her style, and this collection in particular. There is a certain vintage, naive, pastoral and crafty feel around the collection, mostly from the hand smocked detailing and the proportions, so why shouldn’t this person be making something as simple and recognisable, comforting and honest as a sandwich?

Molly Goddard SS'16 collection at the London Show Rooms in Paris, British Fashion Council, Paris Fashion Week, London Fashion Week, British fashion designer, Blink London

Molly Goddard SS’16 collection at the London Show Rooms in Paris

Molly Goddard SS'16 collection at the London Show Rooms in Paris, British Fashion Council, Paris Fashion Week, London Fashion Week, British fashion designer, Blink London

Molly Goddard herself, with her SS’16 collection at the London Show Rooms in Paris

The collection feels both antiquely, milk-maidish and at the same time, for the same reasons of proportion and detailing but taking in to account colour and materials too, kinda subversive as well. There is sweetness on first sight, but upon second look there is a toughness, a grit, a touch of punky anti-joie de vivre. When looking closely at some of the pieces from this collection I was drawn in by the intense, handworked precision in some of the styles. The beautiful smocking has been hand created using tradition and age-old techniques. This is combined with the textural layers, tiers and ruffles, bell sleeves and pattern mixtures to create a really vibrant, exciting feel.

Molly Goddard SS'16 collection at the London Show Rooms in Paris, British Fashion Council, Paris Fashion Week, London Fashion Week, British fashion designer, Blink London

Molly Goddard SS’16 collection at the London Show Rooms in Paris

Molly Goddard SS'16 collection at the London Show Rooms in Paris, British Fashion Council, Paris Fashion Week, London Fashion Week, British fashion designer, Blink London

Molly Goddard SS’16 collection at the London Show Rooms in Paris

Molly Goddard SS'16 collection at the London Show Rooms in Paris, British Fashion Council, Paris Fashion Week, London Fashion Week, British fashion designer, Blink London

Molly Goddard SS’16 collection at the London Show Rooms in Paris

We asked Molly if she had a favourite from the collection. A bit of a ‘Sophie’s Choice’ situation I’m sure, but she pointed out the plaid dress, which is intensley smocked which gives the pattern a totally different appearance on the bodice and upper arms, and the plaid pattern also feeling rather schoolish and country-girl whilst also being a strong Punk pattern reference. I love, love love both the literal layers as well as the subtler layers of reference Goddard has captured on these wonderful pieces.

Molly Goddard SS'16 collection at the London Show Rooms in Paris, British Fashion Council, Paris Fashion Week, London Fashion Week, British fashion designer, Blink London, catwalk show, Vogue

Molly Goddard SS’16 collection. Image with thanks to Vogue.com

Thanks to Molly, for the time that she gave us in Paris at the London Show Rooms event. I hope it was a huge success. For more of our London Fashion Week coverage, just look here.

 

Words by Lucy Williams.

Images by Lucy Williams, unless otherwise stated.

Enjoy! Lucy

“Blink” Music: Bestival’s Headliners- Duran Duran!

Monday, August 3rd, 2015

A slightly different approach to our #MusicMonday post today and this time it’s even more self-indulgent than usual! Hope you don’t mind too much.

Now that the wonderful Camp Bestival is done (I’m sure you lucky folks who went had an amazing time), our eyes look ahead to the original and still that absolute best by name and nature, Bestival! Here’s Bestival’s own Rob da Bank chatting with Duran Duran‘s John Taylor. Yup, Duran Duran are the Friday night headline act at Bestival! Ooh, I’ve come over all hot…

Yes I am showing my age, but Duran Duran were the band that my teenage self lived for. They were plastered all over my teenage bedroom walls, doodled all over my schoolbooks, and it was John Taylor’s name that was surrounded by hearts in particular. This guy inspired my semi mullet resplendent with a Sun-In lightened ginger fringe, my teen wardrobe of frilly white shirts, the early adoption of heavy handed, kohl lined eyes and my (still remaining) penchant for a felt trilby. He was probably my first taste of heartbreak too (darn you Amanda de Cadenet).

Enough of my trip down memory lane. The fact of the matter is that these guys haven’t played the festival circuit for a long time so that fact alone makes this great news. In addition Duran Duran have been working on new album. It’s called ‘Paper Gods‘ and will be out in August. Here’s a track from it. ‘Pressure Off’ features Janelle Monae and Nile Rodgers. Based on this track, and probably also some of my teenage love for these guys, I think this is going to be a great album.

For more great music posts, just take a look here.

Enjoy! Lucy

“Blink” Interview: artist, Tom Waring

Thursday, November 6th, 2014

Every one of our interns gets the opportunity to contribute to our blog. The brief is pretty open and lots of the interns go the streetstyle or personal project route. One of my current interns, Megan, decided to use this opportunity as a platform to spotlight he very gifted fine artist brother, Tom Waring. Once she had shown me some of his work, I was fully behind the idea. I think that Tom has a very unique style and I love his almost photo-realistic meets surrealist approach, and that colour use is so innovative.

Tom has 3 Art A-levels in Fine Art, Photography and Art Textiles. He then progressed to a BA in Fine Art at Aberystwyth School of Art, where he focused on painting. Tom is currently taking a year out of education before he embarks upon an MA. We are delighted to be able to showcase and share his talent here.

Tom Waring

Tom Waring

What inspired you to become a painter? I chose painting over other mediums because it lends itself to what I want to express. I am a sucker for Romanticism and painting is usually, by its nature a very Romantic way of producing an image.

How would you describe your style of working? A merge of historical and contemporary techniques. I use Photoshop often to help with designing paintings, yet the way that I actually handle paint is much more akin to methods used by painters such as J.M.W Turner and other 19th century painters. Usually I start by montaging together photos, chosen from my archive of about 3000 images collected on my computer. Then there are several stages of re-arranging or drawing by hand. From that stage on, the design process is quite fluid.

Tortuga Gorge by Tom Waring

Tortuga Gorge by Tom Waring

Tianzi Resort by Tom Waring

Tianzi Resort by Tom Waring

Flamingo by Tom Waring

Flamingo by Tom Waring

Do you have a favourite piece of your own work? My favourite painting is usually the piece that I’m currently working, because it has my most recent ideas and experimentations in it. Its the piece that, in my head, has the most risk and the most potential at that moment.

I feel most creative when… honestly when my head touches the pillow, inconveniently! Maybe its something to do with trying to switch off  that actually makes it the perfect place to be mentally creative.

What project are you currently working on and how is it coming along? At the moment I have some canvasses waiting to be painted on. Because I’m now out of education, I feel I can be a lot more experimental. My pieces are by their nature very time consuming to create.

What’s new and exciting for you in the immediate future? I’m taking a year out of education to earn some money to put towards a Masters in London. I’m hoping that the more experimental work I’m currently creating will provide me with a body of material and questions I can then take to London and put through the Masters.

Who would you like to have a piece of your art hanging in their home and why? Stephen Fry. I respect a lot of his opinions and views, and so I’d feel very privileged if he chose to own one of my paintings.

If I could have created any piece of art in history, which one would you choose? The Somnambulist by Robin Ironside, just to get a glimpse at what was going through his head (bar the narcotics) when he painted it.

The Somnambulist circa 1943 Robin Ironside 1912-1965 Presented by the Contemporary Art Society 1944 http://www.tate.org.uk/art/work/N05459

The Somnambulist circa 1943 Robin Ironside 1912-1965 Presented by the Contemporary Art Society 1944 http://www.tate.org.uk/art/work/N05459

Interview with thanks to Megan Waring. For more about Tom and his work, take a look here http://www.tomwaring.com/ and here http://www.degreeart.com/users/tomwaring. If you’d like to contact Tom directly, his email address is tomwaringart@gmail.com.

Enjoy! Lucy

“Blink” Interviews: Lucy talks to Eric from EnVeritas

Monday, May 12th, 2014

So, our interviews are usually with creative people that we admire, so it’s quite a change to swap roles and become the interviewee. Yup, it was my turn to have to answer the questions when I met with Eric Ingrand, Vice President of Content Marketing EMEA at EnVeritas Group. EnVeritas is a content provider, mainly working within the travel industry in partnership with some of the biggest global brands. We met to discuss how brands are engaging with social media. The original interview is here on EnVeritas’ own site. Oh, and another first for the world of Blink London… There is a shot of me so you can put a face to the world of Blink London (although I am only one small part of it). You can always find out more about me and my business by looking here and also here. So, here we go!

Blogs are an ideal opportunity to build your reputation, communicate with customers and others in your industry, and express your passion for the subject. In Lucy’s case this has led to a larger, more diverse client base, teaching opportunities at the London College of Fashion and the Condé Nast College of Fashion & Design, and an endorsement by Liberty, a favorite of designers the world over. Lucy is also one of the few bloggers to be accredited by the British Fashion Council to attend London Fashion Week.

Lucy Williams, founder and Creative Director of Blink London

Lucy Williams, founder and Creative Director of Blink London

Eric Ingrand: Why do you think the fashion industry has been so good at using bloggers?

Lucy Williams: Fashion is very much about immediacy and also about customer engagement. Blogs are a perfect medium for both of those things. The fashion industry, at a commercial level especially, needs to express a level of approval by those in the know, some cool kudos and the right bloggers can deliver that, too.

Eric Ingrand: Do you think the same methods could be applied to other industries? If so, which do you think could most benefit?

Lucy Williams: I think anything and everything can benefit. Blogs are about expressing your opinion on whatever subject gets your blood pumping, and if there are others with the same passions then you have your audience.

 Eric Ingrand: What are the top three qualities a fashion blogger must have to be successful?

Lucy Williams: A fashion blogger, in my opinion, needs to have:

  • some level of authority (some experience as part of the fashion industry)
  • a unique perspective
  • the skills to express themselves in an engaging way

Eric Ingrand: Is blogging a business for you, a hobby, or both?

Lucy Williams: I always tell my students that you should start a blog as a passion project, and any financial success that comes along is a bonus.

Eric Ingrand: What are some of your favorite blogs in fashion, retail and generally?

Lucy Williams: I love Garance Doré, DisneyRollerGirl, Jak & Jil and Topshop’s blog Inside-Out for fashion. Beyond fashion I like the Design*Sponge blog. Beyond blogs, I use Le Cool a lot. It’s a great, creative and innovative guide to what’s hot and they have editions for a few different cities.

Eric Ingrand: What are some of the biggest surprises you’ve had from your blog?

Lucy Williams: Well, I guess the biggest constant surprise is the reach and the reaction. It’s something that I love, and it’s a wonderful thing that others love it too.

Blink London is a fashion reporting and consultancy service offering a unique insight into the leading trends of the British fashion industry.

Eric Ingrand – VP Content Marketing EMEA

 

So, now you know! For more from our series of interviews with creatives, just take a look here.

Enjoy! Lucy

“Blink” Interviews: Joanne Admiraal, founder of Hey Jo

Friday, November 22nd, 2013

Did you see my previous post about the joy of discovering the perfect training leggings? Well, click here if you need to catch up on the back story behind this interview. We were fascinated by Joanne Admiraal’s decision to create such a targeted, focused and specialist business, and thought you would be interested in getting to know her and her label, Hey Jo, a little better too. What better way than to send her a random list of questions to help us gain some insight into her motivation, creativity and success? Lets kick this off with a bit of background about Jo herself…

Joanne Admiraal, founder of Hey Jo

Joanne Admiraal, founder of Hey Jo

Joanne comes from an interiors background, but always had a love of fashion and a life long love affair with sports, fitness and well being. Hey Jo was launched a little over a year ago and was born out of a desire to create technically functional, COLOURFUL leggings that look and feel beautiful, in turn then inspiring a positive and active lifestyle. The leggings are intended to function perfectly outside of the gym setting too, working as part of a relaxed everyday wardrobe with their fashion-led colours and subtly luxurious detailing. The Hey Jo product receives consistently appreciative feedback from the sports world, as well as from those who wear the leggings as part of their everyday wardrobe. The leggings sell in both fashion boutiques and active sportswear collections internationally. The label is very excited to be launching in January with Net-A-Porter, a partnership that is sure to help the brand achieve their aim to reach women all over the world who share Hey Jo’s core values of looking and feeling good both within and outside of the gym. Now on to those questions that we posed to Joanne…

Blink: How did the brand name come about?
Jo: I heard the Jimmy Hendrix song just before I met with the branding company for my logo.

B: Who is the ‘Hey Jo’ muse?
J: Every woman.

B: what drove you to create you own label?
J: making something for myself that I couldn’t find. I wanted a beautiful pair of bright red leggings that I could work out in, but were also good enough to keep on all day. We launched at a time when other companies were reporting that black was all that women wanted to wear on their legs. It was a leap of faith developing six colours. We do make black but I’m pleased to say that it isn’t our best selling colour… Phew!

B: what do you look for when choosing clothes to work out in?
J: something which makes me look good and consequently feel good in my workout always helps.

B: tell us about your current design obsession
J: are you kidding? The list is way too long!

B: are you interested in trends or are you more driven by what your customers want?
J: no, we’re not driven by trends but more just moving forward with modern lifestyles in mind, and thinking how best to serve the modern woman.

B: has your business developed in a way that you anticipated?
J: so far it’s developing just as I had envisaged and I couldn’t be more pleased and excited for 2014.

B: why is working out so important to you?
J: I am tall with a long spine which needs to be kept strong, so I have no choice which isn’t a bad thing. Also I feel lousy if I don’t, so for the equilibrium (and not forgetting that clothes feel so much better on a worked out body) exercise will always be an integral part of my life.

B: what makes the ‘Hey Jo’ leggings stand out from the competition?
J: I believe that our leggings truly work as a wardrobe staple outside of the workout environment. This is something that I still don’t see anywhere else and that conviction has been emphasized and reiterated by the feedback that we have received from all quarters.

B: what is currently tempting you into making a purchase?
J: Hah, I’m a Leo so I see temptation all around with regards to purchasing. I just spent a whole weekend in Paris giving in to that particular temptation. An Hermes Collier de Chien just made it’s way back to the UK with me.

B: what is your ultimate dream for ‘Hey Jo’?
J: to dress the legs of women all over the world, I’m a legs girl.

B: what’s the best thing about your job?
J: so far, the wonderful feedback from the trade and clients alike. Customers are coming back for their fifth and sixth pairs; wonderful women who share our desire to wear a little colour on their legs!

B: pencil and paper or computer and mouse?
J: for creative purposes, easily a pencil and paper. Ideas flow more easily with a pencil in hand.

B: I feel most creative when…
J: anywhere I am away from my office, sat still with a little piece and quiet, outside preferably. Traveling always inspires me; I love being in the warm, by the sea.

B: aside from your ‘Hey Jo’ leggings, what do you think is the next most important item in your wardrobe?
J: I wear our leggings most days of the week so I invest in good sneakers which set them off. My current favourites are my Jimmy ChooTokyo’s. So comfortable and I love bouncing around town in them.

Hey Jo leggings

Hey Jo leggings

Hey Jo leggings

Hey Jo leggings

Thanks Jo, we’re feeling very inspired! For more inspirational interviews, just have a look here.

Enjoy! Lucy

“Blink” London Fashion Week: Burberry, AW’13

Tuesday, February 19th, 2013

Are you sitting comfortably? Have you got a fresh brew in hand? Well, I do hope so as we’ve a 15 minute long video full of fabulousness for you. Yes, it’s yesterday’s Burberry AW’13 show in all it’s glory. Fashion joy in it’s purest form. Get your FROW face on…

 

For more from London Fashion Week, just click here.

Enjoy! Lucy

“Blink” Inspiration: Time to Sparkle, part 1

Tuesday, December 18th, 2012

We are in the final countdown to Christmas Day, and in the midst of the most hectic party time of the year. If you’re feeling slightly less than your usually sparkling self, then we suggest you opt for the classic seasonal look and cover yourself in shine instead. This is not only guaranteed to lift your spirits, dressing in the maximum amount of twinkle is the best distraction from any bags under your eyes or a sallow, partied out complexion! Yes, it’s time to sparkle, and here the first hit of some wonderful sequin-tastic looks to help get you in the mood…

Harvey Nichols

Harvey Nichols

River Island

River Island

Roberto Cavalli

Roberto Cavalli

Urban Outfitters

Urban Outfitters

Giuseppe Zanotti

Giuseppe Zanotti

And there’s more to come a little later!

Enjoy! Lucy