A key feature of my work as a fashion designer is that I be as ethical and environmentally friendly as possible. It is something I particularly advocate to my peers and those I collaborate with, as I feel the use of unethical products completely immoral and unjustified. In my work I strive to incorporate sustainable and fairtrade textiles, fairtrade manufacturers, organic fabrics and eco-friendly dyes. I find this aspect of my work challenging as resources (particularly for small purchases) are vey limited, but something that I am nonetheless passionate to uphold.
As an RCA graduate I am committed to my work and always work with genuine interest and enthusiasm. I am constantly working collaboratively with other designers and am receptive to their ideas.
As part of my commitment to being ethical, I undertook an exciting trip to Mozambique in August 2008, where I spent three weeks working closely with a local self-employed seamstress called Yolanda to develop her sewing and design skills in order to help her expand her business. As a result, she is now producing a wider range of garments, has learnt to use paper patterns and will, hopefully, in time, be able to pass on these skills and train others to work for her as her business increases.
I was lucky enough to collaborate with the Japanese textile designer, Reiko Sudo. I was given a selection of her newest recycled fabrics to incorporate into my final graduate collection garments. These were then exhibited in Japan where I flew to attend the exhibition’s opening night, which was a fantastic opportunity and an amazing experience.
I spent the majority of my childhood abroad due to my father’s occupation. Having lived in Singapore, Hong Kong, Korea and Japan, I am extremely fortunate to have an extensive knowledge of Asia, which instilled my love and appreciation of different cultures and allowed me to be completely submersed in fascinating cultures.
Career history / Company history:
2009 Katy Eary (Menswear Designer): London.
Advised Katie Eary on design development for cheaper/ quicker manufacture of her knitwear pieces for her debut menswear collection at the Man show.
Organised knitwear manufacture.
2009 Artful Dodger: New York.
Designed a sporty tailored range and prints for Artful Dodger’s relaunch in 2010.
Presented fabric trends, mood boards, CADs and illustrations using Illustrator and Photoshop.
2009 Focus Mag: London.
Freelance Assistant Stylist
Styled Johnny Borrel of Razorlight in a London based shoot for Focus Magazine.
2009 Otago Polytechnic Award: Dunedin, New Zealand.
Winner of the Otago Polytechnic Award, for the collection that showed innovation in the use of materials and methods.
2009 Mittelmoda: Gorizia, Italy.
Finalist for the Mittelmoda Fashion Award 2009 for a menswear range developed from concept to manufacture.
2009 Thierry Mugler & IFF: Paris
Shortlisted for a perfume concept and bottle to be put into production in 2010, for Thierry Muglers new fragrance.
2008 Albini (Textile Company): London
Designed & manufactured a range of innovative shirts, to highlight the qualities of Albini’s newest shirting fabrics.
One piece exhibited on the Albini stand at Premiere Vision.
2008 Hands up for Darfur: Oxford
Charity Fashion Show
Showcased a collection alongside designers such as John Galliano, Matthew Williamson, Stella McCartney, Alexander McQueen and other names secured by Anna Wintour.
2008 Umbro (Sportswear Label): London
Brief set by RCA to design and pitch a range of sportswear and accessories based on sustainability.
2007 Brioni (Bespoke Tailor): Penne, Italy
Designed a contemporary eveningwear collection, from which one evening suit was hand tailored by Brioni.
Flown to Penne, Italy to attend the Brioni School of Tailoring to learn traditional, hand tailoring techniques of bespoke suits.
The final garments featured in the Brioni AW09 exhibition in Milan.
2007 Graduate Fashion Week: London
Presented a menswear collection at GFW.
Invited to show at the GFW Gala: as one of the five best graduate menswear designers of 2007.
2007 Reiko Sudo (Textile Designer): Tokyo, Japan
Designed innovative exhibition garments, demonstrating the qualities of the newest Nuno fabric, ‘Medusa’.
Flown to Japan to attend the exhibition.
2007 Michael Kors (Fashion Designer): Manhattan, NY
PA for head of menswear, Paul Zumbo (internship)
Creating swatch books of fabrics for sales.
Documenting vintage garments.
Preparing show room.
Delivering and collecting packages.
Scanning, faxing & emailing techpaks & fabric developments.
2006 Moss Bros Group Plc, London
PA for head of casualwear buyer, Shaz Islam (paid internship)
Preparing showrooms & boardrooms.
Liaising with designers (about colourways etc.)
General liaison with factories: chasing up deliveries.
2006 Wimbledon Tennis Championship
Assistant to head of hire, Andy Nash.
Fitting all Wimbledon Tennis players and their families with eveningwear for the Champions Ball.
Alterations: tailoring trousers etc.
2005-7 Moss Bros (Menswear Label): Epsom & Kingston
Menswear Sales Assistant
Fitting customers and style consultation.
Suit hire & associated admin.
Attended training days demonstrating the art of selling.
2005 Karen Er (Bespoke Tailors): Singapore
Manufacture & construction of garments.
2004 Ritesh Kirplani (Womenswear Designer): London College of Fashion
PA for graduate collection (unpaid internshio)
General organisation of collection completion.
Manufacture & construction of garments (including fittings).
Promotion: model casting and following photo shoot.
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I am trying to find the contact details of the projec in East Bali Poverty project were the do knitting and the woman can stay in the village to support themself and their children. Meanwhile I also know about a regular workshop were the work on small scale basis with decent salaries and no exploitation. It is a contact from a friend so I have not been there myself yet to check it out,. Her email adress is firstname.lastname@example.org , tel: +62-361 731318 . Once I know more I will let you know. Good luck!
Hey Charlie, I have just been looking at your website, you are so talented! So much more experienced than me! I live in Nelson, New Zealand's creative capital! If you are going to be down this way and want to meet up then email me at email@example.com. It would be great to meet someone like you, plus the scenery and culture of this region could inspire your next range! Look forward to hearing from you! Viv Williams
I am a designer, based in India , working in organic fabrics and natural dye .I would love to work as consultant in design ad natural material for you company.I am an ethical professional dealing with ethical material and organisation.
Please let me know if there is any offers. you can look at my page to get a glance of my work.
Hello there Charlie,
I have been working with natural fibres in Nepal for a long time now and can supply you with fibre, yarns, textiles, as well as finished goods. Please have a look at www.heavenhemp.co.uk and www.wildweaves.co.uk to get an idea of what we do. I work with hemp, nettle, cactus, banana, bamboo . Hope to hear from you and would like to be your friend. Take care,