I think gully chic, she thinks sports luxe. What do you think?
‘Miniswoosh’, or Alex, is a fashion graduate working for Christopher Shannon and Footpatrol; she also runs her own label ‘ALCH‘. Specilaising in re-working everyday objects, her latest creation (a gilet reworked from Nike duffle bags) gained her a lot of traction through out the streetwear community. We caught up with her to find out a bit more about what she does.
What do you do for Christopher Shannon?
I’m basically the Wholesale and E-Commerce manager so I liase with all the buyers and run our online store. I also develop all the garment patterns for each collection, do the sampling and prepare the pieces for production.
Where does your desire to create stem from?
Probably just from noticing severe gaps in the industry and the lack of actual fabric innovation within clothing production. I think the fashion industry is completely oversaturated with a plethora of brands all creating slight variations of the same designs. I don’t think there’s any point in creating something that already exists in some respect – I like to create products that question traditional notions of how clothing is defined.
What aspects of culture do you draw from in terms of your design work?
It varies from season to season, but overall I’m really interested in the subcultures surrounding men’s sportswear. For example, my graduate collection was based on shoplifting, specifically at sportswear stores. The entire collection was made out of security tags, tracksuits made from machine washable receipts, and full reflective looks. Most of it was full sportswear looks that masked your identity on CCTV.
What’s the idea behind repurposing everyday items?
Basically the notion is looking at the body as a product, and clothing as a form of product packaging. My whole concept is appropriating functionality – so looking at a textile that might not necessarily be used in traditional clothing manufacturing and exploring how it’s original purpose could be translated into apparel. For example, timber packaging is a printed polyethylene textile used to protect timber during transportation. This function of protection is easily translated into outerwear thus, creating a windbreaker out of recycled timber packaging is a completely viable idea.
How important is music as a point to draw design inspiration from?
I don’t really draw inspiration from music but it’s a really integral element in how I work. I think I have quite a niche taste in music for London though. I’m not really into grime or garage, moreso electronic and jersey club. I do, however, make quite a lot of custom pieces for music artists so do work within the industry quite regularly. I think because my work is so visually familiar and engaging that it translates really well into performance.
‘Gully chic’ springs to mind when looking at your own style, aspects of streetwear mixed with elements of high end… What do you think?
I’m not sure if I would associate “High End” with my style, I prefer Sports Luxe (although that’s a seriously overused word now). E.g. that pink satin tracksuit that I made to match the Satin Pack TNs.
What references can you pin point in terms of your own personal style?
Well I basically only wear Nike so I guess that would be my aesthetic in a nutshell. Nike x ALCH. I wear a lot of custom pieces that I’ve made, including the Nike Gilet made from a repurposed Nike duffel bag. I’ve been described before as “that girl at Footpatrol who wears bare nike”. I’m just a huge brand advocate – I’ve got shares in the company and I just got a swoosh tattoo. My personal instagram is @miniswoosh too.
Wanna find out what Alex is up to next? Well you can, at our London Pop-Up. Alex, alongside other budding creatives will be on show in-store during the the 17th -21st of August. Check for details on our Facebook page here.
You can check Alex out on Instagram here.
Edited by Daniel Hawksworth