Tales from the Studio – S/S Sampling

Sampling Summer 2016 kicked off with us diving into the fabric archive and after a few cups of tea and a lot of deliberation we saw some core themes begin to appear. Scandinavian folk, hand rendering and pencil case crayon colours – akin to our friends at Papersmiths‘ pared-down aesthetic.  We were thrilled with this outcome, but we needed a muse – someone to have in mind to make sure the designs stay wearable and very cool.

Our beautiful illustrator friend Charlotte, professionally known as Lotta Scott works just around the corner at Two’s Company Studios on Old Market, Bristol. About to have her first baby, we imagined her in a few weeks time, a new mum, looking super cool in on trend grown up pastels, block colours, stripes and super wearable stretch. We wanted her to be able to go from studio, to meeting, to café, to playdate, to dinner party, in a versatile and eye catching capsule wardrobe.

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Once we had pulled together fabrics we had at the studio to fit our themes, we needed just one or two extra fabrics to tie it all together and make it pop! One of my favourite sourced fabrics for Collection #9 SS is a beautiful pink and red (our all-time favourite shameless colour clash!) super light stretch fabric. It was made in the 1970’s – you can tell by the handle of the cloth, as older fabrics often used techniques which would be too expensive to use now. The pattern on the fabric has a really contemporary look though – especially when used on our wonderful Pleat Dress. So far the whole team have pre-ordered this dress for summer weddings!

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Our new Pencil Skirt panel, the fabric has been used with the wrong side up as you can see the work that has gone into making the cloth which reflects the hand rendered, folk theme of the collection.

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Our new Box Jumpers have texture on either the trim or the body – we found some great fleck fabrics for this with unexpected flashes of colour.

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We think our summer Folk Dresses are some of the most gorgeous we’ve done, too – with beautiful knitted linen panels alongside excellent quality cotton shirting, used as a horizontal stripe! Here are some of our first finished samples:

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One challenge we faced this season was desperately wanting to use natural dye techniques on one of our new fabrics. Putting this into production would require a huge amount of product development and quality testing. It’s also something we could get really carried away with and we didn’t want to limit the creativity to producing exact, matching colours on each piece – so that idea will wait to be a limited edition product and with its very own launch.

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Hope you’ve enjoyed this stroll around the studio! This collection has been challenging, and at times difficult to perfect, as is often is the case with reclaiming fabrics. Mostly, though, it has been instinctive – with joy going into the making of the designs. We hope you’ll be able to tell when you wear the pieces!

Our new colourways of Box Jumper – Mint Fleck, Cream x Mint & Indigo x Peach, are available at the online shop now ahead of the rest of the collection later this month! Tweet us your fave @antiformonline & why, and we’ll retweet!

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