When fashion and music come together, it can’t go wrong: it must be pure magic. On the 15th of February, the second edition of Future Archive arrived at Kingsland Locke and absolutely shook up the streets of Dalston. You know, a casual thing; just a bunch of graduates cooked up an idea which eventually turned out to be a delicious three-course menu, served straight from a fashion cauldron.
For the starter, we got daylight accessibility to the collections and designers to get acquainted with what awaited us in the evening. The dinner was filling: full of flavours, different styles and creatives: all-you-can-eat. The room got full. Everyone was tasting the collections, bit by bit, enjoying mismatched ingredients and their origins. The dessert was spectacular: DJ sets served by Ana Terán B2B Lemayar, Ossou Erratique, Amphibian, Monas, Anilian and Olha. How delicious. We let ourselves dive into recipes and look closer at what designers have added to make this event so special. But to be honest with you, I don’t think anyone will ever be able to repeat it.
Future Archive was created on a stable base made of fashion grads. All built from scratch, with solid ‘3D’ foundations: determination, devotion and a dream. For them all, this incitive was a chance to express hidden desires. “You don’t have to wait for others to build a platform for you. You can build it yourself,” says Lynn La Yaung. No rules, no limits, just the idea and boldly going for it. “It’s freedom because we don’t have anyone telling us what to do or how to do it,” adds Thora Stefandottir. Future Archive unites and “welcome in the younger generation, sees them as a part of the entire fabric – we are not separate,” follows up Isabella Smith. They all have a story to tell, ideas to share and dreams to achieve. The stories vary from longing memories and nostalgia, through emotions, rejuvenation, club culture, glamour, ABBA inspiration, all the way to the Twitter viral photo. Not a single thing is the same and we love it: let’s meet them.
Lynn from the archive created the future. “I wanted to reflect on the things that I’ve done that weren’t finished to the standard that I was happy with when I was looking back at all the projects that I’ve done. I wanted to take them and refine them because there’s no point creating something new when you have something already in your archive that you can revisit, expand and make it reach its full potential. I wanted to take these ideas again and mashed them together to do something new. Make something that is old but bring it back to life. Rejuvenation of ideas.”
Thora shared the story about attachment to items and how meaningful they were to her, even though others didn’t think the same. “My collection was based on emotion. It was about collecting items that I had at some point in my life. Something that wasn’t really meaningful to anyone else. It was like a keychain and these weird things but very sentimental. I didn’t want to throw them away. I was researching the feeling behind them and why I had such an emotional connection to them.”
Linnea Nordquist combined her abilities acquired in London and Sweden to present the collection which includes crochet, knitting and embellished details. She explores handmade techniques in unorthodox materials. ‘Working with up-cycling methods, she explored the second life of unwanted wedding dresses and discarded nylon tights. Both have been upcycled and developed into new garments with crochet and intricate pattern cutting. Liquist’s universe draws inspiration from ABBA, glam rock, vegetables and clothes she dressed her Barbie’s with as a kid.’
Rory took us on a journey, reaching back to his memories of growing up in the Dorset countryside. Through sentiment and nostalgia, he gave birth to a collection. He created a coherent story interspersed with a calm rage of colours. ‘The practicality of the rural lifestyle melds with an isolated sense of creativity in form, intertwining influences from traditional workwear and sportswear’. He playfully ‘reinterpreted classic silhouettes and the use of innovative textiles to capture the carefree romanticism of the outdoors.’
Izabella Bilińska and her Polish heritage took us into a modern sphere. She specialises in historical corsetry techniques and leatherwork. Through the collection, she introduced us to Warszawa’s darkest underground scene; while reverberating traditions that seem worlds away. Her collection conveys ‘a memoir to youth and the history it will become; from collected /reclaimed materials she creates garments with modern sensual cuts fit for the active nature of nightlife and club culture.’
Isabella explained the relation between clothes and people, and her, finding beauty anywhere she goes. “My collection forms a dialogue between our garments and ourselves, how they act both as a ‘projection of the self’ and a ‘protective shell’. Last year, I was struck by this abandoned building that used to be an amazing glamorous 1920s hotel. It was completely gutted and deserted. It was this image of the veneer of glamour being stripped back and its beauty ripped bare that made me want to explore the distortion of glamour and question how relevant it is today.”
Tamara got a hint of inspiration through casually scrolling social media. “I was inspired by a Twitter photo that went viral: these three girls after they’ve come out of the club. They were wearing their pretty sparkly dresses. One of them was wearing high heels in her hand and McDonald’s paper bags as shoes because obviously, her feet were in pain. As women, we love to go out and get dressed up, spend all these hours getting ready and then just look like trash. We got McDonald’s bags as shoes. With my collection, it’s called ‘Girls Night Out’, I wanted to showcase a fun, quite trashy side of women that is sexy as well. Glamour mixed with tackiness.”