Interview with Fashion Lover and Designer Lucy Hurst

This morning we interview fashion designer and recent university graduate Lucy Hurst. Like many creatives, Lucy is on the look out for more opportunities to build on her portfolio before putting her mark on the fashion industry.

Who is Lucy and what skills do you bring to the creative industries?

I’m just like anyone else who has recently graduated from university, I’m just constantly on the lookout for a job and trying to develop new skills to build my portfolio while I have this free time. I think that I could bring a new distinctive style to the industry as my last collection at university was made using drape rather than traditional pattern cutting and it was the most fun I’ve had while making garments. So, it’s something that I intend to use in the future as it’s very hands on and creates a beautiful, one of a kind look.

What first prompted your love of fashion?

To be honest, I kind of got into this all by accident. I’d always loved drawing and making clothes for my Barbie dolls and my nan taught me how to cross stitch, so I was happiest when I was doing that. At school my favourite subjects were Art and History and I loved drawing the beautiful clothes of the Tudors and the Greeks.

I was looking at doing art in my last year at college, but when I got talking to the tutor and asked if they did any textiles-based work, he directed me to the fashion stall and that, as they say, was that. But now I honestly can’t see myself doing anything else.

How best would you describe your style?

I am a little stuck in the past I suppose; I love to look back to the 30’s, 40’s and 50’s because I love the silhouettes and womanly figures of those decades and I try to emulate that in my work. I think if you’ve got a good body you should show it off but always in a tasteful way. A synched-in waist or a slightly transparent dress that just hints at what’s underneath is, in my opinion, more alluring than a micro mini dress.

Who are the fashion icons whose work and style inspires you the most?

I admire the style of a lot of different kinds of women from Luisa Casati, to Betty Page and Frieda Kahlo through to Burlesque queens such as Gypsy Rose Lee, Dita Von Teese and Betty Rowland. I love the femininity and opulence that these women exude. The images they present are both striking and intriguing. They are often imitated but their look is timeless. In terms of designers, I look to Christian Dior, Alexander McQueen, John Paul Gaultier, Marjan Pejoski (who created Bjork’s now infamous Swan dress) Elsa Schiaparelli and Vionnet.

How are you involved in the local creative community?

To be honest I’m not as involved as I would like to be. Most of the people I went to university with are in the same boat as me. But I’m on the lookout for little groups and have a profile at The Young Creatives website and luckily found out about the LCollective when someone just retweeted something about it on Twitter and it caught my eye.

You’re involved and have been to the recent Lcollective morning meetings, what have been your experiences so far?

I’ve only been to one so far but my first impression was that these are just really lovely people. I’m a bit shy but they made me feel very relaxed and welcome and it felt more like a cosy catchup than a chance to network.

How did your recent work at Carvern Walks shopping come about and how successful was it?

In our last few weeks at university, our tutor circulated an email she had received from them, asking if anyone would be interested. I’m surprised more people weren’t up for it because it’s three pieces from our final collection on display to the public in a shop window for six weeks. I’m really proud of it though because it looked so beautiful and Rebecca Ferguson from Xfactor came in and chatted to us about our work while we were setting up. So it was a pretty memorable day.

We see you’re beginning a jewellery line, what plans do you have for this?

Well I’m just hoping I can make a success of it. I’m setting up a little Etsy Shop and have spoken to a Boutique owner in Liverpool for help selling it. I never intended to make jewellery but I did an Internship at Tatty Devine and thought I’d give it a go. I’m just going to have to cross my fingers and hope for the best but my pieces seem to be getting a lot of praise.

Tell us a bit more about your work with Tatty Devine? What experiences did you take from it?

I really really enjoyed it and hope to go back soon. I thought that I would either love it or be really bored but the two weeks just flew. I helped to clean and construct jewellery such as the dinosaur skeleton necklaces, the fish bone necklaces and the fox brooches amongst other things. It really gave me an insight into all the work that goes into the construction and gave me the drive to try and make a go of it myself. I’m currently in the process of setting up a Facebook page (House of Sharkey) to showcase my jewellery and fashion.

Who are your 5 favourite people to follow on Twitter/facebook?

Kirsty Doyle @kirstydoyle1, Little Collective @LCollective, The Young Creatives @t_yc, Sophie Bold @sophiescouse, and at the risk of looking like a crawler: Business Boom Bolton @Business_Boom.

Thanks Lucy! We wish you all the best 🙂 Follow Lucy on Twitter, CargoCollective, Etsy and her blog.

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