jeudi 3 octobre 2013

THE LEGO DRESS FOR THE FASHION WEEK





By Anne-Sophie Cochevelou co-designed with Yueer Zhang

More than 5000 bricks...

                                                                                      By Anne-Sophie Cochevelou co-designed with Yueer Zhang

More than 350 hours of work....
                                By Anne-Sophie Cochevelou co-designed with Yueer Zhang

What is the story behind the LEGO DRESS?  

The story starts not on the fashion side but on the performance side. With the theatre company Ferodo Bridges our space was based in a old court room on Victoria Embankement.  Because it look like a disused building I wanted to make a "site specific performance" involving a lot of lego bricks. On of my friend told me "you should ask for sponsorship, sometimes they fund lego projects like stop motion movies etc… 
Without too much confidence I find on google the guy in Danemark responsible on sponsorship and present the project to him with my portfolio. 2 weeks latter, He replies to me saying that they can't fund my project…BUT that they are looking for a young designer to create a Lego dress for the London Fashion Week. "Would you be interested?" YES !!!!!!! Fashion & Lego is it not the best project EVER EVER EVER? 


I got a meeting with the PR manager of Lego and they give me the project.  I was telling  my friend "i'm meeting Lego tomorrow" imagining a big yellow man with a desk made of colourful brick. 

I proposed to them 2 design and a mood board. They choose the 1st one,  the other one was more "holywood-red-carpet style"  (maybe for another dress!). With this project I had a great creative freedom, they didn't change anything of the original design apart from the colour of the dress from fuchsia to orangy-coral ("we don't want something too girly, we want a dress that even boys can like it. 
Because it's the for the Fashion Week, I wanted like to create something really "couture", as a French citizen really inspired by the classiness of French style, perfect cut of Dior dress. But living in London, i'm really inspired by the craziness and originality  of British designers like Alexander MacQueen. 
This project is a wonderful opportunity to link my interest for "Lego" and fashion, creating something  unique, spectacular, playful, futuristic and at the same time stylish and elegant.  It's a good chance to show that Lego doesn't only affect kids and family but can have a real impact in a fashion environment, and be recognise as a common cultural reference with a iconic status. 


I didn't want to cover entirely  the whole dress with lego but keep some part where the fabric is still visible (because it would be too heavy) and to make the association between Lego and fashion more obvious. 

Lady gaga  spectacular outfit always inspire my creations. 
 Of course to make a lego dress, you need lego bricks. The company organised a trip for me in Farnham, (one hour away in train from London) to visit the workshop of Duncan, the only certified Lego builder in the UK who realise all the Lego installation like the Big Christmas tree in Saint Pancras or a big Present in Covent Garden. A team of men who had past the age of playing with lego are  working  on a map of London underground  with the concentration of ingenious building the next rocket engine for the NASA.


Duncan welcome me by serving me some tea in a Lego-Mug, he looks at the Lego-necklace that i'm wearing "Nice, but some of the bricks are fake, copy from competitor builder" he said as Lego-purist. 
-"You must be a Lego-maniac" I said 
Not really "I don't have any Lego at home and my children are not playing with Lego" 
Then he gives me a bag  "now you can choose". I have "carte blanche" (or more exactly "carte couleur") to pick up an unlimitted number of bricks. The big wall with  thousands of shelves containing every kind of bricks, every kind colour and every kind of shape makes me dizzy. 'On the lego catalogue you have 1571 type of bricks.) 
More of red, more of green,I feel like a child in a candy shop. 

A courier delivers more than 11 kilos of lego at my place, my roommate calls me "Sophie, I didn't opened it but I think it's fore you…" 


There is so many that you can fill up your bath with it, have a Lego shower…with a Lego cocktail.  



But now, stop playing, let's start the serious business. This is a big challenge, make some "wearable art and adapt the square shape of the bricks to to the essential roundness of the human  body. 


First of all, Lego is a toy which is design to play with, my challenge was to make it "wearable", playful in a another way. The plastic material which is not normally use in garment,  the shape and the weight of the brick bring some technical issues which could be solve by using a metallic structure in order to support the weight of Lego on the fabric, creating a neo-crinoline. This structure could allow me to play with volume, create something really big and over the top. The model would be a kind of futuristic Marie-Antoinette, a life size Lego dolls. 


For that I asked Yueer Zhang expertise, my friend and colleague is an amazing seamstress and really good to figure out structure and technical issues.  I also asked some advice to Verity Cleary in the costume department in Central saint Martins who told me to use duchess satin and show me how to make some boning. 
More than25 meters of steel boning, but they deliver it in ribbon so we had to find a metal workshop to cut it. 

It's like building a tent, you have to dive into your garment! don't be claustrophobic! 
The base of the dress without any lego, look like a 50's dress or a Victorian one! 

Because you can't change the original design of the Lego brick if you are doing an official creation, you can't drill hole into the bricks, so we had to figure out a way to stitch the lego on the dress without sewing it. Duncan advised me a flexible structure (that you use of train) that you can stitch to the dress, then click the lego on the structure. 




You have to glue the lego one by one to be sure it doesn't fall apart. we used nearly 15 tubes of strong glue! 


Putting the lego on the dress was the most creative and fun part, it was the same than making a lego construction as a child (the only difference is that you glue them) 


I wanted to explore of the potentiality of Lego,  to show that Lego can also be worn as a jewel, using some really small chains integrated to the dress Lego bricks become kind of plastic precious stones. Chains create decorated metallic fringes to the dress, playing with the multiples creative possibilities of lego material, at the same time, fixed and movable, gems and charms. 





For the chains at the bottom I had to do a lot of measurement. Because the back is longer than the front, and I wanted the chains the same length, I had to make a lot of calculation to figure out the layered shape.  I'm really bad at mathematic, but for this dress i had to call on my  engineer recessive genes. At the end, we had to make 66 chains spaced of 6 cm with 1 cm  of length difference each time, so we put number on the chains in order not get confused. 
The chain are really fragile, need to be fixed all the time! 

I wanted to create a head piece  half way between head band and hat inspired by chinese opera decoration, where Lego become a geometrical flower, a colourful origami figure. 

Using some mesh to make the structure of the hat 










For the shoes, I used some transparent plexiglas platform, and I sticked the lego on. 

Walking on a cloud of Lego

all the accessories...
On the day-Day, 
A cab comes at my place  at 6 a.m to pick me with the dress. "Excuse me Sir, I have an issue, can you come with me and help me caring the dress?" 
The taxi driver is really surprised, "I had really strange requests in my carrier, but no-one never asked me to carry a lego dress". 
We arrive at an Hotel near Waterloo bridge, the dress got a bit damaged during the journey but I brought all my tool with me (glue needles, pliers). The ritual starts: make up, put on the dress and all the accessories, taxi to Waterloo bridge… 


The shooting is really epic because it doesn't stop raining but the rain gives something really dramatic to the picture and the colourful dress sand out in the grey sky, worthy to be completely drenched! 



found a dropped lego on the floor... some friends were looking for us and found a Lego on the floor "They must be around"













Interviewed by BBC China: "for you what is the trend of the next season?"
-Lego of course! "






With Lego, fashion is FUN! 






Dropping my I phone at the fashion week or how to be clumsy with style...



Aspen was amazing, she didn't complain about the the weight of the dress, the rain and the cold. I asked a "strong model" to wear the dress and Aspen is really sporty and athletic.  She is always enthusiastic and interested in everything, had a great fun working together. She is studying chemical engineering and she is a food blogger, smart, original  and beautiful… definitely the new Lego face!






I like the reflection of the back of the dress in the mirror as an optical illusion! 




details of my Lego bag


""DID you get dressed in the dark?
London Fashion Week 2013 kicked off today and it bought with it some rather strange outfit choices.
Dresses were big and bright as a lady in a huge red theatrical dress demonstrated and another looked like a walking banana in a garish yellow number."

"Big and bright dresses couldn't be missed amongst the LFW crowds"


"A model seen wearing a dress made from lego seen during the London Fashion Week Felder Felder catwalk show at Somerset House."



Invited at the fashion show of the Taiwanese designer Apujan


Yueer, so cute at the back of the taxi bringing home our baby after a day full of emotions! 

ON the BBC!!! 


In the Mirror 





"If you build it, they will come.
Usually the mantra of bringing baseball fans to a cornfield in Iowa (one for the Field of Dreams fans there), but for one art student, it's actually putting together some Lego to make a fashion statement.
Anne-Sophie Cochevelou, a student at Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design, in London, designed the dress and shoes ahead of London Fashion Week.
The highlight of the creations is the dress adorned with around 5,000 LEGO bricks, as worn by model Aspen Glen-Cross."


In itv newsTo get in to the spirit of London Fashion Week, model Aspen Glen-Cross poses in a dress adorned with around 5000 LEGO bricks designed by Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design student, Anne-Sophie Cochevelou.



In Vogue


                                                                   By Anne-Sophie Cochevelou co-designed with Yueer Zhang

"Victoria Beckham eat your heart out! 
Fashionistas will surely rejoice with news that Lego has got into the London Fashion Week vibe. 

Lego has just revealed a magnificent dress made of the classic bricks to celebrate the start of London Fashion Week, proving there’s nothing you can’t do with Lego! 

Designed by Anne-Sophie Cochevelou, a student at Central Saint Martins College of Art & Design, the fabulous coral red fabric is adorned with around 5000 Lego bricks, injecting lots of fun and vibrant colour to a design that wouldn’t look out of place on the catwalk. 
Naturally, no dress is complete without accessories and Anne Sophie has completed the look from top-to-toe with customised Lego shoes and a Lego fascinator that is most definitely a head turner!

Speaking about her design, Anne-Sophie says: “I began experimenting with Lego bricks to make accessories such as sunglasses and jewellery and then customising t-shirts with Lego bricks. I then had this idea for a dress in my head and I am absolutely thrilled with the reality of my vision.” 

Emma Owen, PR Manager at Lego Uk, adds: “We love this dress, Lego is all about having fun, expressing your creativity and building whatever your imagination desires. Anne-Sophie’s fabulous design fully encompasses the essence of Lego.”







How to fix a grey day in the UK? Feast your eyes on this colourful Lego Dress!



The lego dress, a ray of Sun light for a rainy morning in London! 




Wearing Lego brings some sunshine in your life! 






Designer always has something to fix! 
The designer team!





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