(from left to right) Esme Loughrey, Louise Joelle, Lucy Wills, Cornelius Brady, Agnès Biro, Andreita Elanor, Elena Jackson picture by Richard Kaby
On February 21st Old Spitafields Market launched The Silk Series, a new cultural initiative curated by ethical fashion designer Mei Hui featuring 28 stalls of fashion, art and lifestyle from East London’s most exciting creatives. A long-standing East London designer, Mei-Hui has joined Ten Ten (a creative organisation founded by Nuno Mendes and Stephen Machintosh), and will bring together a diverse group of new traders that sit at the intersection of fashion, art and lifestyle.
|by Richard Kaby|
“Our aim is to re-establish that unique connection between traders and consumers, creating a more rewarding and personalised experience. Old Spitalfields Market’s Silk Series provides established and upcoming East London designers a gateway to London’s diverse national and international audiences. The Silk Series is a window into new approaches to style, new attitudes to design and the boundless energy that is being generated by East London’s art scene right now”, says Mei-Hui.
To kick off this cultural initiative, local artist Sue Kreitzman was exhibiting her work during the launch week of Old Spitalfields Market’s Silk Series. With a deeply rooted cult following, this self-titled “Wild Old Woman” definitely brought the wow factor via her visceral, colourful, joyful art, which borrows from the cultures that enrich East London.
|by Richard Kaby|
This is the only way I want to live my life, walking my beautiful cat around Spitafields market wearing an elastic band dress that took me 2 weeks to make surrounded by art & colours
Of course this lifestyle is not sustainable in itself and I have to work very hard on the side to afford theses parenthesis of art, bubbles of enchantments , you can be a dandy and live just art for the sake of art.
|Cornelius Brady by Richard Kaby|
I really challenged myself for this event, having a stall, organising a catwalk and doing a performance at the same time!
I presented 6 new pieces of wearable art that I made recently, I won't say it is a collection as each piece is individual and they are not linked by a common theme. Got 5 friends generously modelled for me, with a last minute addition, as one of the model came with her friend, in my shows, everyone get involved, people don't really get the choice!
It is not like polished Fashion Week show, the spirit is "F**K it, I'll do it myself, it is more a punk renegade show. Models change in the public toilet, make up is down outside on a picnic table and the catwalk is the street. The show just exist by the will of some people coming together and willing to create something out of a daily routine.
|by Richard Kaby|
Mei Hui as the new idea to bring back a designer marketplace to Spitalfields ( silkseries) as historically Spitafields was full of small of independent artisans and crafts.
Spitafields like the all east end, have been gain by rampant gentrification, independent café have been replaced by big chains or make up store, and became really corporate. It is time to bring back the art and the independent makers for Spitafields not to become like Camdem where cheap tat for tourist has replaced hand made products.
|Fabulous Make up artist Steffy Shaw doing glittery tribal make up on my models and matching perfectly my pink & purple My little pony necklace,picture by Richard Kaby|
wearing ice cream headpiece By Humans of London
During the colour walk I performed my elastic band dress costume for the first time.
Like most of my design it came from an opportunity I seized. A charity shop manager in Walthamstow messaged me telling me they got a ugh donation of elastic bands and they didn't know what to do with them. Immediately I got my boyfriend to drive the car to the charity shop and got 3 massive bags of hair bands.
fashion show & performance assisted by Alice Edwards.
During the performance, I was going to random people and knotting hair bands in their hair, creating a very intimate link with strangers. Actually I realise touching someone hair is something very private but the fact I am wearing a costume give me a kind of legitimacy to enter this personal space. It is a very mothering gesture, like when your mother do your hair before you go to school.
It reveals people's secrets "I haven't washed my hair, ""be careful with my wig".
But this intrusion has generally been well accepted as people could keep the hair band and go home with a piece of the dress, a memory of this wonderful day.
"I'm so happy on this Colour Walk because I feel I'm doing what I was made for. I'm wearing an outfit which took me 2 whole weeks to make from hair bands, which to me is wonderfully absurd. I'm surrounded by people I admire and respect, and lots of friends came along to help me realise my vision by wearing my creations. It's a struggle being a freelance artist but events like these make me feel that maybe there is real meaning to what I am trying to do."Interviewed by Humans of London
"This Colour Walk has been the first time I've worn something really extravagant without feeling that people are looking at me in a weird way. I'm aCentral Saint Martins BA Fine Art 3rd year student and I'm from Paris. In France we're good at wearing clothes that are very chic but not ones which show a lot of our personality, because you tend to feel judged for looking different there. In London you feel free to show the person you truly are through your clothes, and everybody accepts you, which feels really generous.
"My outfit is one of Anne Sophie Cochevelou's designs. She chose it for me and I found it suited me perfectly. I love that when you look closer you see that it's all made out of found objects. Wearing it has made me feel really strong and empowered and proud. I haven't felt at all ashamed or ridiculous. I feel I'm wearing haute couture clothes, that I'm a princess for a day.
"I don't want to be on the campaigning front line for the rest of my life because it can chew you up, and now I know that art and spectacle can be even more powerful than waving placards. So self-expression has become really important to me. It doesn't even feel like 'dressing up' any more. Most of us here feel that it's when we're NOT dressed to express ourselves like this that we're really 'in costume'."
|by Richard Kaby|
My Boyfriend made me the wonderful surprise to bring my cat to the Colour Walk
picture By leah lefevre sandomirskaya
Amazing article by @Craftandtravel about her first experience of the Colour Walk. I felt the same thing the first time I joined this group surrounded by a benevolent and inclusive energy, far from being a elitist fashion event, everyone is welcomed. the dress code could be "come as you are…as long as you look fabulous"
I couldn't say it in better words as it is written in the article, it is all about finding your tribe.
|read full article here|
"It’s nigh impossible to pick out a favourite, everyone had curated a look that signified something about them and that therein lies the beauty of fashion: wearing what makes YOU feel good. In my mind I assumed I’d turn up and discover a clique of people who all looked amazing but were probably so tight as a group they’d be chatting away with in-jokes and me a newcomer would be there smiling but feeling very awkward. I could not have been more wrong."
For the first time in 2018, in Colour Walk was combined with Silk Series to support local creatives selling their art and enjoy wearing colours with everyone.
Out of 3 bags of the hair bands I got from the charity shop, there was 2 bags of small hair bands that I used for the other outfit and one bags of more primary colours bigger version.
Inspired by Agatha Ruiz de la Prada, and Niki de Saint Phalle creating a kind of colourful snake which follow and magnify feminines curves.
Fortunatly because they are bigger it only took me a day to make the dress compared to the 2 weeks of the small hair band version.
sketch by Sue Harding
It was great to have a stall and be able to catch up with everyone, killing two birds with the same stone!
details of my stall By leah lefevre sandomirskaya
Lot of colours walkers bought from my stall and it felt great to be supported by my community.
|with Sue Kreitzman & Yosif Yosifov at Modigliani private view at the Tate|
I also wore the big hair band dress at Modigliani & Picasso private view invited by Maryam Eisler, I felt I was matching some of Picasso paintings very well, art on the wall and in the room!
by Richard Kaby
Before the launch I actually got a stall at Silk Series on Valentine day. It was freezing cold, I took the wrong bus, I made only one sale and actually forgot to put it in the box so had to post it to Norway to my customer afterwards… but Sue Kreitzman as always was here to support!
Meihui Liu is a true "art matchmaker". In the wake of the colour walk, babulous afternoon at the Townhall Hotel , meeting the incredibly talented Academy Award winner, director Tim Yip ( 'Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon') and learning about Tim's upcoming #CloudProject which will come to life this Autumn at #southbankcentre .. and all this in no better company than with Daniel Kramer, ENO's artistic director and as well as artistsDaniel Lismore Sue Kreitzman and #plastic.
with the master of wearable art, Daniel Lismore, a true inspiration, idol and role model to me.