FK talk to Philippa Wilkinson from her collaborative label, Circle of Designers
Tell us about your collaboration Circle of Designers and how you got started.
Circle of Designers is based on the coming together of fellow designers who have chosen the medium of textiles in their practice. We hope to achieve a beautiful range of original textile design styles. Our aim is to group together and create a dynamic artistic environment for designers to bring eco friendly fashion products into the marketplace by respecting how things are made in the supply chain.
What are your backgrounds and how did you all meet?
So far all participants in Circle of Designers are from different creative backgrounds and we have met through art/textile exhibitions or where we source our hemp organic fabrics. Some of our designers include; PipWilly, Sophie Seeger, Karen Brock, Kasia Jaquot and Anjum Olmo. Each designer brings a different overall look and feel to the fabric which creates a wonderful variety and arty signature to our clothes.We have created a growing collaborative atmosphere of new ideas and professionalism; where we contribute designs and help each other in business.
What inspires your work?
As designers one thing I can say is that we all approach our work by observing the world around us, colour, shape, composition and sometimes translating something as simple as a fleeting impressions into a pattern or artwork. Currently there is a variety of different subject matter displayed in the range of fabrics; Botanical, Urban, Eastern European Folkloric, and patterns inspired from Indian Henna drawings.
What is the main benefit of working as a collective, and how does it all work?
From the inception as a clothing enterprise we would like to do our part in making sure that everything meets the best sustainable and ethical requirements that can be possibly achieved. We have put a few measures in place in this regard, starting from a human perspective; making timeless pieces that have longevity, working directly with our makers – not having them outsource to their people. Checking working conditions and suppliers, using earth-friendly materials where possible, saving on pesticides, water and waste, creating garments made of natural fibre which only require gentle washing conditions.
What advice would you give to others starting out?
Our advise as a creative company is to keep drawing out your ideas, working with other people, designing, designing, designing and eventually you will discover what you love.
What can we expect to discover from your Sydney Markets stall?
At Sydney Finders Keepers in December we are hoping to have a wide range of patterns available from different textile designers printed by hand on hemp /organic cotton cloth and made into original garments made in Australia. The fabric will be made up into different styles from the range. A-Line skirts, paneled skirts, kaftan dresses, with coloured hemp tees/singlets and bags to coordinate. Hope to see you there to touch and feel the hemp. Its all about the fabric designs!