In tandem with a Percival collaboration, Traid invited me to design and produce a capsule collection of womenswear pieces using their fabrics. All garments were manufactured locally in the UK using high quality materials that would have been wasted, had they not been donated to Traid. The collection featured an oversized double-breasted coat in various heavy wools, a long tailored jacket and a shorts playsuit in silks and crepes. It was sold in Traid’s Dalston store and on their website. Many thanks to The Right Project for facilitating the collaboration.
As a project for Autumn Winter 2014, Percival collaborated with the clothing charity Traid to make a special line of products in support of their work. The mini-collection includes the Percival pea coat cut from meltons and camel cashmere, a selection of check shirts in soft brushed cotton, some outershirts in block colours and checks, slim-cut trousers in our unique fit and fine wool unstructured slim-cut blazers. All items are manufactured in the UK with reclaimed textiles donated to TRAID.
When I visited TRAID’s warehouse, I was excited to discover the high quality of the fabrics that had been donated. It made sense to match our design approach to TRAID’s resources. At Percival, we build quality and longevity into the design of a garment, intending for it to be worn season after season. This itself means there should be a reduction in waste; using waste material in the first place extends the idea.
Photography: Sam Christmas | Models: Bethany Harper Walsh, Mark Thompson, Sam Turrell, Luke Waller
Bethany wears pieces from a women’s range I designed “Olivia Hegarty for TRAIDremade”. With thanks to Bella and Matt for house-boat location.
Lime wood 26cm x 9.5cm x 13cm; cotton lashing
The ultimate sustainable approach to design is to prioritise the potential longevity of the designed item and consider its later maintenance as a key part of its essence. The features of this object are reminiscent of those found on a wooden boat. This draws attention to the effort and passion with which a boatowner cares for their vessel. Ownership in this sense does not imply passive consumption. Furthermore, an engaged relation of labour constitutes part of the enjoyment of such possession.
Displayed at the Re-Dress exhibition at Dún Laoghaire Festival of World Cultures July 2010.
Thanks to Chris Pendrich for wood carving mentorship.
Come down on May 2nd to The South William with as much of your old clothes as you can carry and swap with others – find some gems.
FREE IN //// BOYS AND GIRLS CLOTHES //// starts 8pm
(Bring down old cushions too if you have any for the seating sculpture)
The clothes swap at Cafe Oto on Sun 1st March was a great success. Thanks to all who contributed!
Re-Dress are an organisation based in Dublin set up by three vibrant ladies Rosie O’Reilly, Kellie Dalton and Kate Nolan for the promotion of sustainable fashion and textiles in Ireland.
I participated in a project for their stand in the Green Area of Electric Picnic 08. The brief was to ‘upcycle’ a tent into a garment. I used an old 60’s British army tent with some high-quality original details which I preserved in the final piece. The idea was to highlight the importance of intention in design. If you do not intend that a product will be recyclable at the end of its first life-span, then the inevitable outcome for its life after recycling is a lower grade product.
Braungart and McDonagh in Cradle to Cradle use the example of recycled plastics being made into synthetic fibres for the use in clothing where the chemical content of those fibres was never intended to sit against the body and can in some cases be in fact harmful. One of my original concerns was the suitability of tent textile for use against the body, and I contemplated creating an upcycled object for the project that was not necessarily wearable. But I guess if you can sleep in a tent, you can wear it right? And either way, there are certain restrictions to upcycling which probably only apply on a mass-manufacture scale and the value of hand-crafted one-off pieces transcends all those concerns as there is automatically transparency in the process.
In aligning a tent with clothing, there are joint properties that can be explored – protection and shelter. For this, I went with a cloak, as an object that is possibly inhabited more than worn.