Here at the Fleur of England office we've just started our SS20 collections (how time flies!). With the new season fresh in our minds and the launch of our beautiful new SS19 collections online, we'd like to give you an exclusive behind the scenes look at our design process. As a small company, every collection we create is still designed by Fleur herself, in our studio in Bristol. So, what goes on in the mind of a creative director when designing a new collection? Where do they start? How are they inspired?
We've spoken to Fleur to give you a little insight into how she creates her collections, from start to finish, and where she seeks much of her inspiration.
"We always work one year in advance when designing - at the moment I am working on SS 2020! Every season we create four different collections, each one with a different narrative and a different customer in mind. I always begin with colour and the story I am telling, from the sophisticated shades of pink in Desert Rose, inspired by the setting sun in the Sahara, to the softest, palest of pinks in Lily. In contrast, Wallflower is strong and confident in ruby red, she is passionate yet elegant ... anything but a wallflower. Polka is flirty but elegant. I was inspired by a modern rose and I translated that into an embroidery, surrounded by the delicate black spot on a clean white canvas."
"I am constantly taking inspiration from the world around me. Nature is a firm favourite: I find that the colours, textures and shapes all translate beautifully into modern and feminine designs. For SS19 I have really considered what it means to be feminine. For me, this all comes down to the fabrics I use and the soft, luxurious feel of silk against your skin. To be feminine is to be strong; but it is also to be vulnerable, it's a beautiful contradiction that I have tried to explore with my most recent designs."
"For me, designing is a very tactile process, I need to be able to feel the fabrics and see the ideas in front of me. With so many processes becoming digital, I relish in the process of creating a physical mood board. I collate images on Pinterest that best express the aesthetic of the collection. I will then choose which ones to print for my sketchbook and which ones to include on my board. With the colours and ideas swimming around in Fleur's head, she will then start to collate imagery together that best expresses the aesthetic via Pinterest. These are something I share with the team to get their input and ideas for collection names!"