I hope all of you are doing well. Here is some very exciting news from my side.
It has been hard trying to get a job as a designer. Therefore I have been setting up my own company this past few months; working a few days a week as a freelance designer for an outdoor brand and I am designing a small men’s and women’s collection for a snowboard wear brand (this collection will be launched next ISPO and it is exactly what I envisioned myself doing!). I have also been busy with setting up a webshop which sells eco t-shirts (some of it my own designs!)
Very soon I will be less busy with all this because I have been offered a job as an assistant designer at Adidas outdoor in Germany! This summer I was all ready in conversation with Adidas, but due to the fact that there wasn’t a right job opening for me, it has been quiet for a few months. Last month they contacted me again with the great news they finally had a job that would fit me perfectly!
I will start my job in the beginning of April. I am very excited even though it is going to be tough on a personal level because my partner will be living in our home in The Netherlands. I will be travelling back and forth on weekends (approximately 7 hours one way..oh my…).
I am very excited to announce that in 2013 I am going to do things slightly different!
I am going to be self employed as a freelance designer. Because I am an all-round designer with specialization in sports and kids wear I think I am a very interesting person to hire for any fashion company having collections in my subject of specialisation or are thinking about setting up collections in these areas.
I am also setting up my own webshop. I am still the research phase, not exactly sure what to do, but I am sure I want to do something with sustainable fashion. I would like to sell creative, fashionable and fun designs in great qualities and educate people about the possibilities of buying “green”(without looking like a giant frog!)
For me personally I am very excited looking forward to a variety of new possibilities and challenges in 2013!
After my contact ended with Adidas I found out that H&M where setting up a new sportswear department. I contacted them and had an interview over the phone. The interview went well and I was invited to come and meet the recruitment team in Amsterdam. On that day there were 3 other candidates who all travelled quite a bit to get to Amsterdam, one guy was flown in! It was very interesting meeting them. They all had been working at interesting companies like Adidas, Puma, Kuyichi and Marc Jacobs (New York). It felt quite good to be in the same category as them. The day started with a small presentation talking about how H&M is organised and what to expect when you start working for them. They were also talking about their plans of becoming the biggest sustainable fashion company in the world, one of my reasons to love H&M, I already knew this because I have written about that in my dissertation last year. After this presentation the recruitment team split up and we all had 2 interviews, one about our work and one about ourselves personally. The interview about my work went really well, but the personal interview was though with a lot of difficult questions. I also mentioned I found it hard picturing myself living in Stockholm (location H&M HQ). If all went well I would have been invited for the last round to come to Stockholm to meet the sportswear team . Unfortunately, a week after the interview in Amsterdam, the team of H&M let me know that they weren’t going to continue with me.
I know it has been a while since last blogged. Since I graduated I moved back home to The Netherlands. I took some time off to clear my head after this past year. It has been a extreemly busy year with huge ups and massive downs. Of course I have been looking for a job as well.
At the graduation fashionshow in May, there where people from Adidas present. A few weeks after the show they contacted me and told me they where interested in me and asked if I would like to work for them. During an interview over the phone they asked if I wanted to do an assignment for the rugby departement. I gave it a go and dove into the world called rugby. Because I didn’t know anything about rugby most of my time was spend on researching. I did the assignment, but to be honest I didn’t think it was my best work ever. When Adidas came back to me they sad that they liked my assignment, but they could tell I wasn’t a rugby expert. They would have offered me a job if this position wasn’t for a senior designer. The asked me if I would like to do another assignment for Adidas Originals Kids. I wasn’t eager to go for kidswear because I have been trying to get this label that I can only do Kid’s wear off. But because I would love to work for Adidas decided to give it a go. To my surprise I loved doing this assignment. Combining sports with kid’s wear came quite easy to me. Very proud of this result! Adidas came back with the comment that they loved my work, but Adidas decided not to hire any new design people, so therefor this story ends.
A short update of yesterday. After winning the ” Billabong design a bikini contest” , The European Fashion Award “FASH2012″ by SDBI, I won the Performance Sportswear design Award. Judged by Nike’s inovation team member: James Kamo and handed to me by eco fashion pioneer: Orsola de Castro. Hopefully I have nicer images soon. (fashionphotagraphy students?)
It has been a extreme few weeks, but I have managed to do what seemed impossible: Finish my collection!
Last week I have done a photoshoot with Liam Fuller (http://fullerfashion.tumblr.com/ ) who has done an amazing job making my collection look great! The gorgeous Izzy has been so kind to model again and my great assistant Nina also looks awesome! Patrick has been so kind to take care of everyones hair and to model as well and Chris has been great with modelling for me twice. Olivia (http://www.oliviabossert.com/ has been amazing with the windmachine and her advice. So basically it takes a great team to make my collection come to life. Thank you all so much!
Check out my collection!
Eventhough this garment has been on a photoshoot for the olympic torch last week, today I actually finished my first jacket for this collection!
It has been one of the most complex garments I ever made (and will probably be the most complex one in this collection!)
Finally I have managed to finish the first piece of my graduation collection “One World”, a sustainable snowwear collection for men and women.
The first piece is called Aaron and is a snowpant for men made out of recycled jeans.
Over the weeks I have been very busy with finetuning my collection and making sure I have everything ready to make all the garments.
I am very excited to say that I have been sponsored by Schoeller and Polartec! Both of them are top of the range fabric suppliers. I met the people from Schoeller and Polartec when I was in Germany for ISPO. Back then I had the chance to go through their collections, so I knew what fabrics to request.
Schoeller has offered to sponsor me with 10 meters of any fabric in their collection. After going over the samples they had send me I have requested 4 different fabrics which will all become outerlayers for my snowwear collection “One World”.
For the baselayers I wanted to use Polartecs recycled range. Polartec has send me 9 different fabrics which I can use for baselayers.
After my return from ISPO it was time to focus on my graduation project. UCF has been so nice to give me 2 extra weeks because I have missed a lot of time due to FASH2012. I had 2 weeks to work out the basic shapes for my collection and to create an experimental portfolio. Madness! For the past 2 weeks I have been running around feeling out of time. No time to think just do it! Most days I had to create at least one garment. I can almost not believe it myself, but I have managed to make 8 garments in two weeks and I finished my experimental portfolio(30 A2pages!) on time!
This Wednesday I presented the first line up for my graduation collection ”One World” a snow wear collection of which each outfit has been inspired by a continent. The collection is aiming to be as sustainable as possible.
Of course there were a lot of critical questions and comments. Some I saw coming and some were a suprise. But overall I think it went well. Next week I will receive my official feedback on both assignments.
Shown in the pictures is a sneak preview of my final collection. Please note that this is not a finished project, it is a work in progress. Enjoy!