We are happy to introduce you to the four student finalists in our competition with London College of Fashion entitled Cutler and Gross Project 0734. The students were asked to creatively reinvent our iconic 0734 frame. Through each entry we were able to see the frame come to life in new creative mediums such as film, illustration and photography. We are immensely inspired by the passion, precision, creativity and enthusiasm put into the brand-aligned design work.
The students will present to a celebrity panel of judges on July 31st including our Design Director Marie Wilkinson, British designer and CSM graduate Jonathan Saunders, celebrity photographer Richard Young and London College of Fashion Head of College Frances Corner. The winner will be awarded a one-year paid work placement as the first ever Cutler and Gross Design Assistant.
Based in the C&G Studio in Neasden, West London, the student will be a part of the Cutler and Gross exchange training programme in collaboration with C&G Italy. This will require extended periods in our own family-run factory in the Cadore region of Northern Italy where they will learn the expert artisanal craftsmanship and time-consuming attention to detail that goes into creating our handmade frames. With this in-depth knowledge they will work to design briefs, creating and developing high quality, finished samples.
Isabell Yalda Hellysaz
Currently completing her BA (Hons) in Fashion Design Technology: Womenswear, Hellysaz‘s passion lies in pattern cutting, sewing and tailored clothing. Driven by intense curiosity, she has an eye for detail and is highly skilled in knitwear, print and surface embellishments. Hellysaz believes that fashion is too often focused on consumption and mass production. Slowing down the process, she wants to explore a more human approach choosing a minimal aesthetic where the female is constantly in touch with masculine shapes.
Her research on Project 0734 focused on the Second World War juxtaposed with Space Age inspirations, providing a futuristic feel to the designs. Hellysaz worked within the parameters of the Cutler and Gross brand ethos and heritage using words such as “stylish”, “functional” and “discreetly cool” to guide the process. Through this she has developed “anonymous and outstanding pieces.”
Finishing her BA (Hons) in Fashion Design and Development at London College of Fashion, Rose Irwin looked to achieve both pattern and texture in her designs by adopting the unique craft of patchwork. Taking Amish Lancaster quilts for colour inspiration, she fused this pallette with fresh pastels and fluro brights from ’80s British streetwear. Irwin found much enjoyment in analysing the fashion ‘faux-pas’ and novelty of glam rock.
For Irwin, patchwork contains heritage, creativity and individuality as each section of fabric is fused together separately. Her BA collection was made predominately of silks used to create digitally printed silk scarves, which were shown alongside a selection of perspex patchwork visors.
For Project 0734, Irwin looked more directly at the sports uniform, which “serves the purpose of distinguishing athletes in a crowd with bright colours and distinctive patterns,” said Irwin. “I brought sportswear to the streets by creating a street uniform of caps and glasses.”
Nicola Brindle loves experimenting with colours and new techniques to recreate traditional patterns and textures. Currently finishing her BA (Hons) Womenswear Design and Technology degree at London College of Fashion, her design work for Cutler and Gross is based on her research into anti-culture, the development of package holidays and Las Vegas. She was interested in addressing the contrast between luxury and kitsch and the art of sophisticated humour.
“I started this project by looking at the architectural essay Learning from Las Vegas, which analysis the 1970′s landscape of Las Vegas,” said Brindle. The subtle colours and bold geometric structures had a sense of sophistication and sleekness where as the modern-day experience embodies the 24-hour neon lifestyle. Within her designs she looked to combine these opposites in terms of finishings, shapes, colours and pattern.
“I had always intended to stick to the classic shape of the 0734 glasses and my designs focus on additions and enhancing the frame’s structure. I believe as a designer it is my role to find a balance between tradition and invention and I have enjoyed creating novelty glasses with a fresh sense of glamour.”
Completing her BA (Hons) in Fashion Design Technology: Menswear, Rikke Bonde has a love for visual art and considers fashion the challenging aspect. For her it is about pushing the boundaries of traditional menswear by experimenting with innovative techniques and novel textures.
Her designs for Cutler and Gross were heavily inspired by her final collection entitled Hyper-Natural which was strongly influenced by a journey to California. Bonde explores the contrasting aspects of reality and unreality. Silhouettes and textures in the collection are informed by the craftsmanship of Native American costume and weaving, incorporating innovative textiles (using special machinery as Tanaka) and hyper-real colour palettes inspired by Jeff Koons and Umberto Eco.