Hi Hannah, can you introduce yourself to our readers?
My name’s Hannah. I’m a London based designer, currently working at an amazing sustainable denim atelier. I’m passionate about slow-made fashion and production that doesn’t have a negative impact on our environment. I really believe in the influence of craft in design, and think it’s important to support that on a local scale as well as internationally.
Where do you get your inspiration from?
Anywhere and everywhere. I find myself forever jotting things down in a sketchbook. Whenever I overhear a phrase, read something interesting in a book or see something that is made beautifully I make a note or a sketch of it — even something as simple as the way someone wears something I like to try to capture that moment for a later reference.
I think as a designer, you can’t always pinpoint where an idea begun; you build on experiences, interactions and mix that with further research.
What was the inspiration fort he HMDA collection? How did it take shape?
I tend to look for the beauty in things that have been used, damaged or broken. For this collection, I was heavily researching denim, its history and the cultural impact it has. From here I began looking at Japanese processes and mantras such as Boro and Wabi-Sabi, then exploring Kintsugi — the Japanese art of mending pottery using staples, glue and gold leaf.
The process behind the collection begun as a ‘staple-to-fit’ tailoring method which I applied when fitting on real women. Taking masculine shapes and rough materials, I feminised and ‘mended’ the forms through manipulation to create garments that play with ideas of spontaneity and happy accidents.
The HMDA collection combines these explorations of gender, mending techniques and denim cultures.
How would you describe your personal style?
Casual, thrown-on, relaxed. I tend to wear things a size too big and often stick to black so it’s quicker to make a decision what to wear in the morning.
What are you going to do with the HMDA winnings?
I plan to start my own label further down the line so a lot of it is in savings, I was also sensible and paid of a loan I’d taken out to do my Masters and then lastly – the fun bit – I had a splurge and treated myself. I took my boyfriend away and we spent a month travelling around Japan which is something we’d both dreamt of doing for years — it was absolutely incredible.