Slow Design by Thalia Warren

Thalia1Thalia Warren, fashion designer and Slow Design pioneer

4c8ba31bd67b6bfad5c917700a62be5fscreenSmoke tree dyed knickers with fig leaf dyed apron

630b8e5780779be26fbbe4886d26a2bascreenFig leaf woad chevron vest and open knickers with canvas apron

41c1d5d1c60e056c6325a4b4704bf27ascreenFig leaf and weld dyed ombre sleeve t-shirt with canvas apron

London Fashion Week may be a distant memory to most of us now, such is the dizzying speed of fashion, but during the frenzy of a couple of weeks back we visited the London College of Fashion’s MA Sustainable Fashion show, and came across an altogether different viewpoint from graduate Thalia Warren: Slow Design.

Using locally sourced botanical dyes such as fig and rhubarb leaf (she foraged for most of them), Thalia’s collection of beautifully nuanced silk and canvas garments were created entirely in East London and show that it’s possible to create sustainable fashion that’s both in time with the cycle of nature as well as contemporary living.

As Warren outlines in the project synopsis, the collection explores new ground, embodying an aesthetic that’s neither lavish and wasteful nor deprived and ascetic. In her words, “it represents a new sensuality thrown up by the vibrant urban marketplace, by local seasonal cycles and the natural environment, by ecology and by a personal artistic drive fusing all these elements.”

In the flesh her garments are extraordinarily beautiful; the natural dyes, though subtle, have unparalleled depth with subtle shifts in colour in accordance with changing light, while the prints and garment shapes have a purity and elegance, even when risqué in nature – there are a series of ‘ouverts’ or open knickers that are simply beautiful, and which completely rewrite the rulebook when it comes to preconceived notions of crotchless undies.