O2W: Sadie Clayton

Graduation Fashion Week is an explosion of design talent so intensely saturated that only the top can be noted; Sadie Clayton’s debut AW13 collection was so innovative it became one of the most praised by fashion press.

Sadie specialised in mirrored copper metal and sculptural silhouettes; her exploration of daring experimentation and 3D manipulation is what informed her unique design process and created outrageously architectural yet beautiful garments.

Sadie’s relentless creativity happened during the design process and she has already collaborated with a cordwainer and milliner – Charlene Ong and Naimh Flanagan –throughout her debut collection and intends on keeping these endeavours up, with a new capsule collection of shoes out next month. Ahead of this Sadie has spared some time to sit down with Spindle and share the inner workings of a structured and fresh designer.

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Even pre graduating you had more experience than most of your peers, what kept you motivated through-out the influential learning period of studying and interning?
I am a hugely energetic person and therefore throughout my time spent at Kingston University I had masses amount of energy which I couldn’t bare putting into projects which I wasn’t enjoying so I began to look for experience in design houses. One thing rolled into another and I ended up working for the very bold Sorapol & then produced a self-initiated project for Galliano! It’s my enthusiasm and spirit which kept me motivated.

So what ideas from the already established Sorapol and your self-initiated project for Galliano, stick with you now?
From the dramatic brand which is Sorapol I learnt a lot in terms of pattern cutting and I the team also taught me patience (although some would say that is impossible). In Galliano’s Paris studio I was told the great phrase to ‘think of the woman’ and this phrase now stays with me as I design and my feedback gave me confidence to believe I had jumped to a new level on design.

As you built up your AW13 collection for GFW, what music inspired your making?
A lot of Jocelyn Brown’s ‘somebody else’s guy’ – in fact, this song was basically on repeat and at particular times when I needed to relax my brain I would listen to Erykah Badu.

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Congratulations on winning the second place award for Innovation at GFW – how has the support and reaction been following up from this?
In one word; Incredible. My collection was very statement and a polar opposite of what is expected from the institution of Kingston University yet I have had amazing press, reactions and statements.

Where did the sculptural and architectural influences of your work arise from?
I always knew I wanted to in some way work with metal and when working with that material it automatically becomes sculptural yet also I was looking at Japanese home interior and the way the bodies intertwined in erotic romantic imagery. A mixture of these influences staying resulted in designing these architectural garments.

Do you envision a particular person wearing your garments while you are creating them?
Oh yes I can always envision someone in particular wearing each one –  in particular music artists – Grace Jones, Lady gaga, Beyonce – the divas.

Any hints on what we can expect and how your brand will evolve for SS14?
My brand will evolve as I do but my signature is the use of copper – always always always copper! My jewellery pieces really show this and I can tell you that I’m planning on pushing the boat to the next level with my copper saddles!

And how do you envision your brand moving forward post this?
Over the next decade I want to have lots of garments/accessories/pieces which stylists can pull for all kinds of press, however I wish I could have a team of artists that I produced for when they are about to perform!

Words: Jordan Joshua Lewis