Seaside Vintage Scarf
A new scarf, proudly named ‘Seaside Vintage’ in collaboration with Alyson Walsh of That’s Not My Age. This is how it happened…
Working collaboratively adds a new dimension to the Creative Process, especially as, from a design perspective, I work alone. Alyson Walsh is an author and freelance journalist, former magazine fashion editor and the woman behind the Blog, That’s Not My Age (TNMA). Alyson has featured several of my scarves in her regular Saturday Telegraph column, plus I featured in her TNMA EDIT last September, a collaboration with a few of her favourite independent designers.
Alyson and I got chatting over lunch at the Garden Museum in London in Spring and it wasn’t long before our creative juices got flowing. I had a much loved vintage scarf from the 1920’s and had developed this as a new shape for my collection. Alyson was keen on a graphic pattern for this shape, stripes, or spots. I immediately thought a stripe would work perfectly because the scarf is printed on the bias which would enhance the stripe pattern. A woven fabric cut on the bias, particularly silk has a natural stretch so the fabric drapes beautifully, perfectly finished off with hand-rolled edges.
Back at the drawing board I found my Sonia Delaunay Fashion & Fabrics book. A Russian artist, Delaunay produced some of the most striking original fabric designs between 1920 and 1930, her designs are Art Deco in style and still look so modern today. Delaunay’s design sentiment was the starting point for both of us, along with my vintage scarf, with colour inspiration coming from Alyson. A vertical stripe suited the long style of the scarf but rather than create an endless stripe, I designed a deep border stripes (45 degree angle) at each end to add a lovely contrast and finishing touch to the design. Below you can see the stripe in various stages of design, mocked up on paper to the final artwork.
Finished Stripe Design Mocked up on paper Final artwork
Now, for the colours. Alyson had various outfits in mind that she’d styled previously with her favourite colour combinations. So, with all the the research finished it was off to design our new stripe. During this process it was starting from a blank piece of paper, exploring colour combinations, playing with varying widths of stripes and proportions to create a harmonious design.
The final design was sent as a digital file to to the printers in Macclesfield. It’s always very exciting to see the design printed onto the fabric for the first time, sometimes colours need tweaking or an element of the design needs an adjustment. After printing the fabric is steamed to set the inks and at this stage the colours develop their final intensity. The scarves are sent locally to be hand stitched on all edges. The hand-rolled edges give the scarf added body and drape. The scarf is finished.
As Alyson says this scarf is ‘Easy-to-wear, use it to rev up your not-so-basic basics or add a boost to neutral outfits. The slinky scarf looks great simply draped around the neck or looped’ or as I also like, tied with a loose bow. You can style this in a masculine or feminine way which is its great appeal.
We hope you love our collaboration.
To read Alyson’s post, click here
Photograph of Alyson Walsh by Neil Mackenzie Matthews