Newly graduated designer from Leeds Arts University, Tia, featured her work from her graduate collection ‘Hit the North’ in the York Fashion Week Student and Graduates Runway Show at the Malmaison, York. As a celebration of her Northern background and identity, this collection can be depicted as an extension of who she is, placing a large emphasis on personal identity.
Her ensemble delves into the history of the so called ‘gritty culture in the North’, dissecting various attitudes surrounding Northern subcultures, sports culture and the Manchester rave scene. With a primary focus on sustainability and creating hardwearing, long-lasting garments, her work simultaneously ties with the concept of workwear for more manual labours and the importance of producing and wearing durable clothing that is comfortable for the wearer, actively defying the rules of fast fashion.
Tia views fashion as a celebration of individual people and centralises her attention onto making the connection between the maker and product; with a focus on the time, care and attention put into creating a standout piece, these ideologies are quite the contrary to the mass production associated with fast fashion pieces. She aims to avoid adhering to the rules of fast fashion and places a value on constructing her own route, wearing what she personally deems attractive and appealing.
The return to the incorporation of traditional techniques into garment construction and embellishment is at the heart of Tia’s values. She also emphasises the importance of the people that take the time to teach others how to carry out these techniques, which are often passed down generations. She places a high value on the relationship between the maker and the product.
Tia is currently working on a slow production creation of an intricately designed cross-stitch item of clothing. She creates her garments by hand and anticipates that the production will take approximately two months. Alongside her constant generation of new ideas and designs, Tia is also researching and producing articles detailing the unethical side of the fashion industry, featuring examples such as greenwashing and throw away culture, spreading awareness of these issues.
By Molly Bramham