Last month, we invited emerging designers from around the world to submit their work for a chance to win a portfolio review session with the AnOther Magazine team. We were blown away by the response. Over 450 of you got in touch and we were astounded by the quality – and creativity – of your work.
Unfortunately, we had the tricky task of whittling the submissions down to just eight winners, who present their collections here, sharing a few words on the concept behind their designs. They range from twin brothers Paulo and Roberto Ruiz Muñoz, whose brand DNI pays thoughtful homage to their home country of Peru, to French former styling assistant Lauren Perrin, who creates clever hand-crafted tights, gloves and sleeves.
Speaking to these individuals, we were inspired not only by their creativity and their craft, but their commitment to environmental practices. We felt hopeful that, though we are experiencing dark times right now, the future of fashion is bright with minds such as these lighting the way. Thank you again to all who applied and explore the winners’ collections below.
DNI (Paulo and Roberto Ruiz Muñoz)
“We called this collection ‘Volver’ (to return) because we went back to what seemed essential, not to continue creating a new collection, but to bring together the most representative pieces of our two first collections in a proposal photographed in Peru. ‘Volver’ brings to life what Peru represents in our memories, especially through various important elements such as the emblematic motorcycle taxis, the beach, the sea and the fishing boats – symbols that keep inspiring us today, reminding us of our childhood in our hometown of Casagrande-Trujillo. For us, having this collection photographed in Peru when we were confined to Paris was like coming home, especially with Peruvian talents, it was even more rewarding.”
“After working as a stylist assistant for three years, I wanted to reconnect with designing and making clothes – the reason I first became interested in fashion. The decision to concentrate specifically on tights arose from what I saw as a gap in the market for bespoke, hand-crafted tights, which I later added to with gloves and sleeves. Working mainly with vintage fabrics and antique buttons for editorial commissions, I wanted each of my designs to feel unique. For commercial pieces, I work a lot with lycra, a strong and versatile fabric that reminds me of my hometown of Biarritz where people wear it to surf. Now I am focused on outsourcing the manufacturing of my products, meaning they will become more affordable to a wider audience, a hugely important step for me.”
“My collection was a development from my thesis research into Donna Haraway’s Cyborg Manifesto and Alfie Bown’s Playstation Dreamworld, exploring human relationships with technology and attempting to subvert patriarchal science fiction archetypes. I worked in ZBrush to create print and jewellery elements referencing the Dark Souls game franchise, which alongside the silicone moulding process became a means of investigating the definition of craft in a digital age. Haraway’s definition of the cyborg as a ‘disassembled and reassembled, postmodern collective and personal self’ informed the posture corrector and waist trainer garment references, in reaction to my relationship with my phone and the performance we all participate in as online avatars.”
“The process of creating the collections is a way of understanding myself and the women of this generation. The collection ‘No Man’ is a story about a woman who is living without a man. Her feelings and her state of mind were investigated and transformed into the garments. The inspiration was driven by artworks of contemporary artists such as Polly Borland, Eva Hesse and Sarah Lucas. The feminism theme was exploring within the collection – I reused and remade such feminine items as tights, bras, and panties for making some of the garments of the collection. The shapes, silhouettes, details, and the way of construction of the garments are the way of telling this story.”
“An intrinsic part of my identity developed thanks to my diverse heritage, one that involved migration and cultural fuses throughout generations. The cross-cultural way of life is normal for me, and one that I envision for the world. Through my practice I aim for a trans-national way of life by disarming prejudice. I repurpose and decommission military surplus garments to break down the borders, violence, repression and nationalism that they represent. The outcome subverts the viewer by referencing military garments for an opposite and new purpose. It eliminates their negative connotations to portray my views on a borderless, diverse, sustainable and more unified world.”
“Through my work, I strive to redefine the contemporary man through the exploration of male stereotypes, specifically the 21st-century American man. Through the deconstruction and fluid reassembly of the modern male uniform – the suit, the identity of masculinity is reinvented. I aim to design clothing that allows the everyday person to behave with vibrant emotions as a retaliation to the sterile world of capitalist decision-makers. This collection stresses the importance of a positive and dynamic form of masculinity, in contrast to the dull energy that has become a social normality in hopes of creating a healthy self-expression of male emotions.”
“When designing I gather inspiration from many different aspects of my life and try and transfer this inspiration into print and knit whilst also applying my inspiration to the silhouette of the garments I make. More recently I have been finding inspiration from dreams which I have been having during lockdown, this inspiration has allowed me to produce garments that have challenged my ability of pattern cutting and also allowed me to develop my digital printing skills. In the future I would like to continue producing garments that are bold and colourful that apply my love for knit and print.”
“There is a mania and fluidity in the way I work. As patterns, fabrics and colours come together to create a considered calm in the look overall. I work specifically with second-hand fabric, turning clothes into cloth and patterning them into pieces. Sustainability is at the core of my work as a designer. As we approach our second national lockdown I want to make my designs relevant in 2020 as protection becomes ever more synonymous with fashion. Gradually cloth will become our new skin. Our bodies and appearances sculpted into whoever we what to be perceived as. This year I begin to build my final collection for Central Saint Martins and it is important because it embodies sustainability in all layers, socially, physically and spiritually. Humans are not going to survive if we cannot understand and feel what we are doing to our planet. We all came from the jungle. It’s time we returned.”