Monday, 31 March 2014

When I Grow Up...

For this instalment of When I Grow Up, we grilled knitwear designer Charlotte Booty and found out a little more about the girl behind all that macramé...

 When did your passion for knitwear begin? 
 During second year I had a project called knit and print and my main inspiration was cobwebs covered in snow. I was trying to find a texture to recreate the look of the cobwebs and came across macramé. I preferred it to traditional knitting as it allows you to work straight onto the body and see the shape develop as you wish quicker into a three dimensional form. I have always had a love for textures but it was not until I discovered the possibilities of knitwear that I realise what I was able to create

Have you always enjoyed making things? 
 Definitely. I have always had a love of making things and as a child I would cut up my mum’s tights and make them into ball gowns for my Barbie Dolls. Textiles is my strongest area, this particularly became apparent at university where I'd create samples out of mundane objects and if I was assigned to make five I would make thirty - earning the awful nickname of the Sample Queen. I love to experiment with the techniques I have learnt through different mediums and show diversity with each new collection I create. 

What inspires your work? 
I love looking at derelict buildings, cobwebs or even patterns in trees. Seeing an unusual surface gives me inspiration for how I could apply the print to the body. I try to recreate the surface through sampling and then apply those samples to the stand.  I find I normally work backwards, working with the materials first to see what I can create and then applying the shapes and silhouettes into fashion.

What’s been your favourite piece you’ve made so far? 
 Probably quite an obvious choice but my favourite is the Cable Tie Biker Jacket I created for my graduate collection. The jacket was inspired by Bauhaus and consists of over 100,000 cable ties threaded through perforated leather. It took over a week and half to create the whole thing but every time it is used in another shoot I feel it was worth the effort.

 Who would you most like to see wearing your pieces? 
I would love someone like Rita Ora to wear my pieces as I feel the sporty feel and tailored bright colours of the Porcupine collection would show off her street style. 

What have been the highlights of your last year? 
 The biggest highlight of my last year would definitely be being published in Europe; Rising Fashion Designers; Volume 2. I've had a few pieces published in a range of editorials and a couple of music videos but to have my work printed in a book really topped off a great end to the year. One of the biggest compliments to my work is that each time my work is used it's in such a diverse way so that when I see the photos the pieces look completely different. 

 If you could go back in time which period and place would you choose? 
 I would definitely choose the Roaring 20’s period in America. I feel I take a lot of inspiration in the form of 1920’s style. I love the ‘Age of Wonderful Nonsense’ with the prohibition, glitz and glamour. I adore the style of the flappers, from the floating fringe dresses to the feather head bands. I am entranced by everything about the ornate style of Art Deco architecture, art, clothing, hairstyles and décor. I feel the Roaring 20’s silhouettes massively influence my macramé garments, from the neckline to the fringe 

 What are your future plans?  
I'd love to intern abroad for more cultural inspirations to influence my work. Although my aim for this year to create a new collection in time for London Fashion Week’s Fashions Finest. 

Tell us something about you few people know...
 I am secretly a bit of a geek as I adore shows like Doctor Who, Supernatural and Game of Thrones. I also have a passion for escapism in the form of dystopian book series like Name of the Wind, The Hunger Games and Delirium.

 What would you say to anybody aspiring to become a designer?
 Personally I think you just need to have passion in what you are doing although it helps to do a lot of research and sampling to work out your designs. Experiment with new materials and constantly challenge yourself. Be confident in yourself. It is an incredibly tough industry, but do not let that knock you down - instead you have to channel it into your work. Although as a young designer myself I am still in the early stages of my business though it is always reassuring when I create a new piece and upload it a social network how much interest that piece gains. I would definitely recommend putting your work out there on as many different platforms as you can.

Interview by Kerry Flint

Thursday, 27 March 2014

Budget Beauty

We're girls who loves nothing more than a trip to the hairdressers and having some down time in a comfy reclined chair, having our tresses lathered up and head firmly massaged - we're feeling drowsy just typing this! But, we all know that a salon smooth Barnet sometimes comes with a hefty price tag - Well, not any more! Set up salon in your bathroom with this D.I.Y Coconut Oil Hair Mask. 

What you'll need
Coconut Oil - Coconut Oil is an amazing product to have in your pantry, you can use it on your hair, your skin and even in your cooking! So when buying a tub, look at it more as an investment. 
Extra Virgin Olive Oil - Optional. 

 Step One: Scoop out some coconut oil from the container and massage into dry hair. Apply root to tip if your hair is particularly dry, or just to the ends if you prefer. Coconut oil acts as a conditioner for your much loved locks and it smells delicious too! - think 'Bounty'. If you're wanting to add extra virgin olive oil into this mask to create a hot oil treatment then you can mix both the olive oil and coconut oil into a bowl and place in the microwave for a few seconds. Extra virgin olive oil will hydrate your locks and applying the product to your hair warm allows the hair follicles to open and allows the product to get down deep to sort damaged hair. You really will feel like you're at the salon. 

 Step Two: Wrap your hair into a towel, or use a band to push it away from your face and leave in for a good 20 minutes to do it's thing. 

Step Three: Hop into the shower and rinse out. Make sure you shampoo your hair TWICE as to not leave any excess product in your hair that might create grease and whack on some conditioner if your hair is crying out for it!

Step Four: Now to style it up. Flip your head upside down and part dry with a hair dryer to achieve volume in your roots. Flip your head up and say 'Hello' to your new crowning glory!

Words And Photography by Emily Smith

Tuesday, 25 March 2014

Look what Gertrude Made!

Unless you hadn’t noticed yet, we really like pretty things here at Cellardoor, so you can imagine how easily we have fallen in love with these beautiful dresses from Gertrude Made.     

These vintage-style dresses are beautifully handmade by Cathi, who hails from Australia. After learning to sew at a young age, she’s never lost her passion for it and that is clear just by looking at her lovely clothing.     

If you have something extra special in mind, she’ll even work with you to custom make the dress of your dreams – and the shipping doesn’t cost the earth either!  

Check out all of her products here.

Tuesday, 4 March 2014

Perfect Pancakes

Happy Pancake day to all our readers and followers. We'd thought we'd share our simple pancake recipe with you. We love ours simply with a little lemon and a sprinkle of sugar... how do you eat yours?

110g plain flour 
Pinch of salt 
2 eggs 
½ pint of milk (can use half water and half milk) 
Selection of your favourite toppings

- Sieve the flour and salt into a bowl; add the egg 
- Add ¼ of the milk and stir carefully with a wooden spoon, beat the mixture until it is smooth and then let it stand for 15mins 
- Slowly add and beat together the rest of the milk and then use an egg whisk to get air into the mixture - Into a small pan add a dessert spoon of oil and heat until you can see steam rising faintly, pour the mixture on to the pan so that it covers the whole area in a thin layer 
- Cook for 2mins each side 
- And then sprinkle with your favourite toppings.