Exclusive Interview: Catherine Hudson

Catherine Hudson returns to BFW for another year, this time showcasing her Menswear Brand, Leif Erikkson. We talk to Catherine about alternative careers, her previous awards and her future goals in the fashion industry. 

 

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I feel very excited about what I see, this way of fashion is modernizing itself and becoming sharper in its design.

 

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BFW: Hi Catherine, I guess we could call you a regular for Brighton Fashion Week as you have brought your work to us before! What made you decide to come back to BFW specifically? 

CH: It was an amazing experience last year, I was so happy to be part of it last year and being asked again was very exciting.

 

BFW: BFW celebrates sustainable and ethical clothing, why is this so important to you? 

CH: It’s important for me to be conscious about how I approach the manufacturing and production of the clothes. Ethical clothing is important to me because it allows me to fully exercise my moral judgement of right and wrong. I am able to benefit the wearer by allowing them to feel better about the clothes they are buying, as well as acknowledge those involved in the process of making.

 

BFW: For anybody who is unsure, what is 'the art of up cycling' and how have you incorporated it into your collection?

CH: To up cycle is to give an old or damaged product a renewed purpose. To create something that is of better quality.

I am using denim and up-cycling old jeans to produce new garments as well as using end of roll, and faulty material.

 

BFW: Do you believe that the perception of sustainable fashion is changing? 

CH: I have come across a host of ethical designers/ artisans encouraging more of a sustainable mentality when they create their products. I feel very excited about what I see, this way of fashion is modernizing itself and becoming sharper in its design.

 

BFW:As this fashion is growing, do you think it is impacting where and how people are dressing?

CH: I think it is, and the perception of ethical fashion is more positive due to the designers producing such high standards of work. I think those who are seeking artisanal individual product are more likely to come across ethical brands, I find it is largely down to customer preference.

 

BFW: In 2013, you became a finalist in the 'EcoChic' Design Award, how did this inspire you to carry on with sustainable, eco-friendly fashion? 

CH: I liked the way I worked when making the collection. I enjoyed knowing I was doing something right. It was a challenge for me to make something that was desirable but also sustainable. This method of work is always developing and changing, so my journey is ongoing.

 

BFW: Your collection, Leif Erikkson you are bringing to this years show, focuses on menswear, what inspired this?  

CH: I have experience in men’s tailoring, a small amount but it was enough for me to make the jump from womenswear. I enjoy creating men’s clothes, my work has always been womenswear based so it felt natural to switch over. I felt I was being more creative which has impacted on the clothes that I now make.

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BFW: Do you have a specific process when you start a new collection? 

CH: I like to start with an image or a small mood board, which is generally art based. Ideas always grow so I try to make it organic and ethical as possible, which is why this stage is so important for me. This stage informs everything in the process.

 

BFW: What do you want to have achieved as a designer, 5 years from now? 

CH: Successfully trading with a strong customer base. It would be cool to be able to support an initiative that supports workers’ rights in the fashion industry, that’s something I want to look into.

 

BFW: If you weren't a fashion designer, what would you be doing right now?

CH: Thinking about how I can start working in fashion!

 

BFW: Describe your collection in one word

CH: Inventive

Leif Erikkson will be showcasing their collection at the Zeitgeist catwalk show on Friday 16th October. 

Website: www.leiferikkson.co.uk Instagram: @leif.erikkson

Facebook: Leif Erikkson

 

Leif Erikkson will be showcasing their collection at the Zeitgeist catwalk show on Friday 16th October. 

 

Interview by Maisie Franklin