Kirsty Ward is most likely a name you’ve heard of before; if you didn’t catch her interview with yours truly last summer, then you no doubt have previously come across her distinguished statement jewellery and clean considered womenswear pictured on a number of fashion blogs, magazine editorials or even the odd stylish celeb.
When we last spoke to Kirsty she was revealing news about her Spring / Summer ’13 collection, so we thought it was only apt that she’d also share with us her highlights for this season — in particular a unique bag collaboration with fellow British designer, Sarah Williams of Williams Handmade.
“I’ve created several clutch bags in previous collections, however this was something that I’ve always wanted to explore further, so when the opportunity came up to collaborate with Sarah I was super excited,” Kirsty told Twin. “We first met at ITS#9 where we were both finalists in the accessories category but I’ve been a big fan of her work for years now – plus I think our aesthetics work really well together.”
The collection consists of four bag styles in total, all of which feature detachable and interchangeable straps so that the wearer can mix between the colours featured in the chosen pastel palette of pink, blue and grey. Similar to Ward’s own womenswear designs, Sarah’s clean, minimalistic creations form a perfect foundation to the bold signature jewellery pieces that Kirsty has adorned the surfaces and edges with.
The Williams Handmade for Kirsty Ward collection will be showcased along with the rest of Kirsty’s Autumn / Winter ’13 offering at the Vogue Talents Corner, Palazzo Morando, during Milan Fashion Week later this week.
Images courtesy of Alexander Jordan
Zana Bayne makes pieces for people who aren’t afraid to let their accessories do the talking.
The Brooklyn-based designer handcrafts body harnesses, belts and other accessories worn by the likes of Lady Gaga. Having founded her blog Garbage Dress in 2008, Bayne already has a strong following for her own sense of style, which is composed of Ann Demeulemeester, Rick Owens and lots of black. Both her personal and brand aesthetic showcase a penchant for slightly dark and elegant.
Twin talked to the designer about bullfighting suits and the power of blogs…
What is the design process of a collection from start to finish?
I like to make collections that respond to the one prior, often ‘carrying over’ designs. Sometimes it begins with a color, or shape, or specific body part that I want to highlight. A lot of the time, I think of a certain ‘lack’ or ‘void’ – something that I wish existed, or was more accessible. From there I do a lot of sketching. In the developmental stage, I do a lot of image hoarding; I collect pictures that seem to resonate with my current state of mind, and once there’s enough of them I try to look for themes and patterns.
What inspires your designs in general, and more specifically, your F/W 11 collection?
I like to design with my friends in mind, taking what I do and adapting it to something that would fit their style. I like my work to be wearable for a variety of people, so I definitely keep styling options in mind. For F/W 11, I began with the image of a Torrero & his Traje de Luces (bullfighting suit) – the feelings of strength, pride, and confidant finesse. I also used wider cuts of leather to create bolder lines on the body. The colour palate of red, black, and patent black leather echoed that masculinity.
How has your blog helped you develop your brand?
From the advent of my blog back in 2008, I realized that if used correctly, it could become a very effective portfolio of my point of view. I have always posted my own photographic content, and kept the entries based on my life experiences.
Every step of my business development is chronicled on my blog. I think this openness and visual archive has been a huge help. I’m able to share the process behind the product as well as show how my pieces can be worn in daily life. I think its hard for a lot of new labels to establish consumer trust without years of brand history, so in a sense I have been able to create this through blogging.
What are your future plans and projects with Zana Bayne Leather?
Right now I’m working on my S/S 12 collection which I will be showing in February (I think seasons are unnecessary for accessories), as well as a few collaborations with designers for their F/W 12 collections. Everything is still made by hand by myself & my studio helpers, so I’m hoping to find a way to relieve some of the labour intensity. We shall see.