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Top 25 Art Blog - Creative Tourist

Corrie Nielsen: London Fashion Week S/S 2013 Catwalk Preview Interview

Fashion designer Corrie Nielsen worked in close collaboration with Kew to create her new collection: here's how the partnership worked.

Written by Amelia Gregory

Interview with Corrie Nielsen, Illustration by Rosa ad Carlotta Crepax, Illustrated Moodboard
Corrie Nielsen S/S 2012 preview by Rosa and Carlotta Crepax, Illustrated Moodboard.

Fashion designer Corrie Nielsen has been wowing us here at Amelia’s Magazine for a number of seasons so we were very excited to discover that for S/S 2013 she has worked in close partnership with Kew… here she describes how the collaboration came about and what we can expect from the new Kew inspired collection.

I am very excited about your upcoming S/S 2013 show, which was done in conjunction with Kew Gardens: how did this relationship come about?
I knew that I wanted to base the season on plants and flowers, so the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew was the natural first port of call. It is one of my favourite spaces in London. The whole studio went to Kew together and we took countless photos, which are plastered all over the studio walls. My PR, Courtney Blackman, ended up meeting Kew’s Chairman of the Board at an event and if you know her, she makes things happen. The rest is history. They were really excited that my collection would be all about Kew.

Corrie Nielsen Corrie thinking about plants on a bench under a tree at Kew
Corrie Nielsen Peony 038_Pae_dau_ - from KEW ARCHIVE
Your interest in history is well known, how did you take inspiration from the original documentation of Charles Darwin’s journeys, which are stored in the Kew libraries?
After the first studio trip to Kew, I took a secondary trip with my business partners and that’s when we got to explore the seed libraries, browse through Darwin’s original letters, etc. I’m fascinated by the concept of Darwin’s ‘The Origin of the Species’ – seeing his letters was an unbelievable honour. I’ve taken that concept and really explored it by researching actual blueprints of plants and flowers. The complexity is staggering and in tranfering the research into the clothes, I’ve really had to employ serious engineering to some of my more sculpted pieces .

Corrie Nielsen Swarovski Collective by Catherine Moody
Corrie Nielsen S/S 2013 preview illustration by Catherine Moody.

Can we expect to see any other influences from Kew – for example are there any particular seeds, flowers, trees or other plants that have inspired the new collection?
Tulips, peony roses and even the Victorian glass houses of Kew influence the range.

Corrie Nielsen Stairs in a glass house at Kew
Corrie Nielsen One of my favourite shapes at Kew
How do you process this information? eg do you take photos and then create mood boards?
Photos, photos, photos and I study individual specimens. My studio walls are one giant mood board. I also research a lot online for further development once I have the concept in mind.

Corrie mood board
Corrie Nielsen The Peacock
How often have you visited Kew in preparation for this season’s catwalk show? Any particularly fond memories that you can share with us…
I’ve gone a couple of times and had a very friendly experience with one of the garden’s peacocks. Being able to go into the seed libraries and seeing all the varied specimens that Kew works with was staggering.

corrie mood
What kinds of fabrics feature in the new collection and where were they sourced from?
I’m working with a lot of silk: metal-infused silks, gradient silks and cotton and lightweight wool. I source most of my fabrics from France.

Corrie Nielsen Team Corrie Nielsen at Kew
What else can we expect from the show in terms of styling and production?
Rebekah Roy will be styling the show and for a second season, Emma Yeo will be creating headpieces. She’s so talented. AOFM Pro’s Yin Lee is doing the makeup again – I love working with her. She really gets the brand. TONI&GUY are doing the hair and we are working exclusively with M&P Models, so every single model on the catwalk will be from M&P. And lastly, once again my collection will be named after a Medieval Latin word…

Corrie Nielsen by Zulekha Lakeca
Corrie Nielsen by Zulekha Lakeca.

Corrie Nielsen shows at the BFC space on Friday 14th September 2012. After London Fashion Week Corrie Nielsen will be exhibiting in Paris at Vendôme Luxury Tradeshow at Le Meurice Hotel, 75001.

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One Response to “Corrie Nielsen: London Fashion Week S/S 2013 Catwalk Preview Interview”

  1. Excited to see Corrie’s show, we’re going to be designing the look book for the new collection.

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