Tuesday, 30 March 2010

AW10 - The hit list

Now no fighting girls - this season its all about the Penguin print headscarf...

To be worn in all moods, for all occasions. If you don't have one in September you just ain't cool sister. FACT.

For when one is "melancholy"


..."not quite yourself aka not enough sleep and a bit nuts"

...has "lost the plot"

...or just a little bit sad. Your pure silk Penguin print scarf will turn that frown upside down and at just £40 each it would be rude not to.

The scarves will go on sale in September at selected stockists which will be confirmed shortly. If you are interested in purchasing one I would suggest you email me your interest and I will keep your details on record to inform you when they hit the stores.

As I am keeping the label very small this year, there will be a very limited number of scarves made, so make sure you get in there.


p.s If you email you are by no means obliged to buy, I will just inform you of when stock is released

Saturday, 27 March 2010

You live. You learn. You learn. You share.

Working with fello enthusiasts

Over the past few months many people have emailed me asking me for advice (which is strange for me, but lovely) and I as always try and be as honest and matter as fact as I can possibly be. This week has included a couple of really interesting projects.

Katie's Design brief

Katie is a student at Bath Spa, where she studies Fashion Design and has asked me to write her a design brief for one of her projects. This is a strange one for me as I have no experience in teaching but have a fair amount of experience in receiving design briefs at college.

Katie needs to see me three times.
1. To be briefed
2. To get feedback
3. To show me the final presentation

The project started this week and we had arranged to meet next week but unfortunately I have meetings in London so our initial meeting will be over the phone (sorry Katie!).

So when thinking about the brief I wanted to come up with something enjoyable and interesting whilst remaining relevant.
I chose the "World Wide Web", asking Katie not to look at it as a library of information on other designers through blogs and on-line magazines but to look at the structure and development of the web and the implications it has on people's lives.

It is a very open brief and I gave Katie a few ideas on where she can go so lets see what she comes up with...

Elaine and friends' Industry Project

Elaine, Amanda, Bianca, Alison, Ib, Esther are brand management master students from Istituto Marangoni (London) and asked to meet with me this week.

They wanted to get a better understanding of the process and development of womenswear in the fashion industry and wanted to pick my brain on how this process is for a new designer.

The girls made their way from London all the way to my house in the middle of no-where yesterday and we all sat in my studio and chewed the fat for a good hour or so whilst I talked through everything I have been through this year and what I have learned (lets hope they weren't too bored!)

We talked Production, Sales (see example of sales order form above), PR, Marketing, Branding and they even helped me out on a few contacts as well.

The girls seemed incredibly clued up on and knew a huge amount of what I had already told them, but I hope I helped a bit. We are meeting for the last time in London next week to show them the collection etc and answer any more last minute questions.

Friday, 19 March 2010


Website design gets under way

So it's time to get an official platform to showcase the label and it's collections, a website. I have collaborated with Lucid Design Agency on this with a friend of a friend Matthew Blanchard who has recently designed other fab websites including the new Cassius Eyewear one.

To get an idea of what I wanted I have been doing a lot of research on other websites figuring out what I like and most importantly what I don't like. My favourites are Alexander Wang - I love the simplicity

Chanel - obviously

I also have to consider the titles I want and all the content i.e biography, press etc and functionality. Is it easy to navigate and not annoying with too many sub-titles and irritating quirks?
There are so many things to consider and with Matthew living in Liverpool and my studio being on the fair Wight Isle it's not easy. We will prevail though and I from the first few mock ups I think it's going to be pretty stunning..yay

Wednesday, 17 March 2010

I am still alive

Apologies for my lack of blogging this past few weeks...
I actually hijacked my parents' skiing holiday and took a couple of days off...amazing.

It was kind of work as well. Brian was there so we talked action plans and I managed to do some sneaky grandpa snapping on the slopes...this guy was legendary and yes that is his beard and it is real...

Dad-A.K.A "Mr Cool" in his transformer esq sunglasses

Mum - Raving it up at apres ski

Me- behaving and definitely NOT letting my hair down...much

So back in the UK I am continuing my meetings with buyers (watch this space), the highlight being when a less than sturdy clothes rail fell on one of my prospective clients...one way to break the ice I guess?!?!

Things to note during sales period:
1. What sizes do you sell 6,8,10,12,14 / s, m ,l?
2. Minimum orders
3. Deposit
4. Terms and conditions
5. Packaging (will they provide or you?)
6. Care labels, swing tags etc (you or them?)
7. Delivery window and requirements

I also printed off a bit about my brand which I had compiled so they know where I have come from and where I intend to go. A line sheet is also essential (spec drawings and prices) and of course no one gets past me without a cuppa and cake being offered/thrown in their direction.

Friday, 5 March 2010

So what happens now...?

Post LFW action plans

So I wake up the day after the exhibition has finished with an unexpected urgency and tension hovering over me. Ahhhhh i've over slept....it's 8am. I bolt out of bed, hair, legs, arms flailing behind me. I rain them in and dart down the stairs. BOOM. IDIOT. LFW IS OVER. GO BACK TO BED.

After months of continuous, uninterrupted hard graft the toughest transition in my life seems to be stopping working at a million miles an hour. I feel like the finishing line on my 100m sprint is a brick wall, I kind of don't want to finish, it's been way too much fun. Hummph.

Get over it Taylor. this is the challenging bit now, you have to sell it. Now GO!

So day one is a goody. I'm off to see a big London department store. They want to see the collection. Get in. I potter through London in my little Renault clio, arriving 2 hours early which in central London = expensive. Good one. In my nervous state I decide that a 2nd breakfast is the best option.

After spending 1/2 hour carting my collection through the store we start chatting. I think it goes ok. I have everything I need which is good.
Price list with spec drawings
Press release
Fabric swatches
Contact details
As far as I am aware it is pretty tricky to get stockists in your first season. They say stores want to see that you're going to stay around and not flake at the first hurdle. I get it but it definitely doesn't make it any easier for us.

Next stop i'm off to Vogue house to meet with one of the magazines to show them my collection. It all goes fine apart from I am greeted at the top of the escalator trying to contain my childish fit of giggles....
Whilst carrying my collection (piled high in clear plastic bags) I was confronted by a young lady in the escalator asking if I had a steamer tucked somewhere under my mound of plastic bags and clothing

I had in my tramp like glory (giant green puffa jacket and hat) been mistaken for someone I was not. This time it was for an intern. I take solace in that I was actually even let into the building. One step up I guess.

The collection goes down ok I guess, it's always hard to tell but i'm smiling as I leave to pay for my 7 hours parking at £25 gazillion pounds/hr...bargain

Tuesday, 2 March 2010

All right STOP, collaborate and listen...

Anyone interested...?

1. Claire Pepper the wonderful photographer is looking for a new studio in London. She has extensive equipment that can potentially be used by other photographers etc...email her if you know of anything:

2.Jelena Fehmi is an incredibly talented pattern cutter. I met Jelena a few years ago when she was creating patterns at Frost French. Pattern cutting has always been a huge part of my designing, I find it fascinating, helpful and it pushes my designing in new directions.

Jelena has started a business where she teaches people to pattern cut through a variety of short courses in London. You should check out her website which has just launched and get in touch if you're interested, i'm sure they'll get booked up in no time!

Jelena also assists designers in pattern cutting their collections.

3.Website collaboration

I am looking to build my new website. It is a really exciting project and am looking for someone to help me on the technical side of things. Please email me if you are interested...