So 2013 came to a slow and painful end...queue 2014...Oh wait! We’re halfway through January already!
In the middle of a heat wave and I've kicked of winter production. I get light headed every time I have to try on a sample to make sure the fit is right or to check if the length needs adjusting. This is always the tricky part; staying ahead of the consumers’ demand means I need to think at least three months ahead. That means shopping for boiled wool and heavy weight knits in the middle of summer, convincing your wholesale clients to, just quickly, slip on this long sleeve hooded dress. It takes some getting used to, but I guess its part of the job.
This week I also had to book my time slot at SA Fashion Week (SAFW) for the spring-summer 2014-15 collection. I personally love winter and find designing summer collections arduous. It’s weird; most SA designers tend to prefer summer and only do a minimal winter collection. Summer tends to be a more commercial season and as great as that is in terms of being able to pay rent on time, it makes designing for a fashion show harder.
As the owner-manager-designer-financial-and-HR-departments of my own business I tend towards trying to streamline all processes as much as possible. In the design process this translates to designing one collection per season that I can show at SAFW and, six months later, send to my retail outlets. Most large fashion houses have the resources to present a fantastical fashion show, then has a team of designer translating it into a commercially viable collection. As much as I wish I could, I simply can’t operate like that.
I started designing my summer collection last week; merging the most successful elements from this summer into fresh silhouettes. I've approached it from the same angle that I usually reserve for my winter collections; adding textured knits and layered detailing. So far it looks like my least summery collection, yet I’m more enthusiastic about it than I've ever been for a summer collection. I feel like designing and experimenting, playing with new techniques and generally having fun...strange how it shows in my work when I’m passionate or when I've lost the love...oh well! Here’s to creating from a happy place.