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Interview: Lucilla Gray

Thursday 18 December 2014
Words Ailis Mara

The fresh out of fashion school designer Lucilla Gray chats to Spindle about her outstanding designs, paying tribute to the natural world through technology.

Lucilla Gray focuses on working with varying textures and patterns to create breathtaking pieces of wearable art. Growing up in New Zealand brings an adventurous influence to her designs and there are big things in store for this designer in the forthcoming year. And I’m not just talking about the exaggerated structures of her work.

Your designs are both very strong yet feminine, how do you find this balance?

I find the balance comes from the proportion of the garments. I like to play with exaggerated curves in my work; this helps to give a feminine silhouette.

What would the attributes be of the typical woman that would wear your designs?

Powerful, intelligent, vibrant and sophisticated.

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You’ve said, I think this was regarding your graduate collection, that you like to push yourself and you work with some crazy ideas. What’s been the most difficult to execute out of your crazy ideas?

I featured a lot of 3D textiles in my graduate collection formed by heat bonding. I developed the technique, which proved to be a very labour intensive process!

What were the inspirations for Hyper-Floralis?

Hyper-Floralis was inspired by the relationship we have with technology and nature.

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You use some vibrant colours, is this a similar colour palette to items we might find in your own wardrobe?

I have a lot of colourful prints and vibrant shoes in my wardrobe but I also have a lot of black, I think it’s a kiwi thing!

The collection pays “homage to the natural world through a distorted representation”. Do you want to expand on this description for us? How so?

I wanted to explore how images of nature can be represented on the body. It became a play on what we perceive as reality and representation.

You were born in the UK and grew up in New Zealand, do you bring together any influences from either of these in your work?

Growing up in different countries and being able to explore the world from a young age has enabled me to experience new cultures and aesthetics. Growing up in New Zealand provided an adventurous upbringing and I feel this shows through in my designs.

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I saw a picture on your Instagram mentioning your new studio and the AW15/16 collection, which is exciting!!! What have you got planned for AW15/16? Any inspirations as of yet?

The new collection for A/W15/16 is moody in aesthetic with punches of fresh colour and textual prints. It will have the energy of my first collection Hyper-Floralis, but a higher level of sophistication. This is where I aim to push the brand forward.

Where do you see Lucilla Gray, as a brand, in five years time?

I see Lucilla Gray stocked internationally across Europe and Australasia, I’d also like to open my own flagship store one day.

Finally, if you were to have a playlist playing in your studio, what would be on it?

I love playing albums! I have all these guys on repeat; Lorde, Broods, Sia, Alt-J, Low-Fang.