Student Run Central Saint Martins Fashion Blog

Month: June, 2012

Chloe Kim

Tell us about your background and how did you get into Central Saint Martins?

 I studied in Australia for 3 years before I got into Central Saint Martins Foundation course. I was really into fine art, so I was going to apply for the fine art courses. One day, when I was working at a cafe, I met this guy, who wanted me to model for his project. Then I heard about CSM fashion courses. After I researched about it, I thought that this is something I would like to do more than fine art.

Describe these past few years at CSM?

 Since Foundation, I didn’t have much knowledge about fashion. I didn’t know how to do the research, sketchbooks, moreover, I wasn’t even a good drawer, but what always made me try to push myself harder to study fashion was my motivations and inspirations that I got from my tutors and friends. I remember myself walking everywhere around London, trying to find new places and new people, and I really love it here in London, England. I feel this city is so free and all the historical things are just so amazing!

When you look back at yourself on the first year, what would you advice to yourself now?

Be more creative and work like its my final collection. Basically, try everything! I realized that things get much easier if I know how to deal with them…if I tried more in the first two years, no matter if it was good or not, I could still reference it in my work in the future.

Did you do a sandwich year?

I didn’t do my sandwich year. I am sure that it would have been really helpful if I did it before starting my final year. However, I also think that having a personal collection is really about myself. So, if I don’t have much experience or if I’m not good enough in skills compared to others, I believed that this very point could be my concept or even a style of my own collection. The graduate collection is really about you, so how good you are could mean who you are.

Please tell us about your final collection.

It is inspired by Charles dickens novel “Great Expectations” and it’s character Miss Havisham. However, my final collection is about this girl who lives with the trees. I always had her as my main inspiration for the last few projects. The girl who inspires me is just an imaginary character, she might not be human and she is pure and free. I imagined her living in a forest where trees and flowers grow on her body. I thought this idea would be interesting to make into garments, and I really loved drawing trees and lines, so it was really fun working during the whole process. In fact, I was using lots of shredded and distressed lace for textures that look really like the trees, like the living trees that are still growing on her body.

What were the doubts during the whole process?

 I don’t think I had much doubts. I was only worried if I could finish it on time or not. Also, I remember one day when I felt so stuck that I couldn’t really make any good judgement. That’s all, but most of the time I enjoyed it.

What would you advice to the soon to be final years?

Be organized. Organize your helpers and your personal schedule because you will learn how to work with people and get things done on time. It is your collection, but also a part of your studies, so try for things that can improve yourself. The whole process will be really long and tough, so organize your time and use it well. It will affect your work in the end.

What did it feel like during the final show?

During preparations backstage, one of my garments was not worn properly and everything wasn’t fully stylized because the fitting time was too short. It was the most stressful moment looking at my garments not being fully ready and going out onto the runway. However, when models walked and everything finished, I totally loved the feeling of how it all, something that I put one year of my life in, was done in just 2 minutes. I felt like I saw the climax of everything during the show. It felt damn good! I still remember the excitement and how strongly I felt that I really wanted to do this again. Ha ha, yes!

What your parents think about your chosen career?

They don’t really worry too much about what I choose for myself. If I get a job, that will be my career, but if I can’t get a job, what can I do.. ? That is still my life! I just try to think free and my parents advise me. I guess if I can get a good career with good money, they will worry about me less. Ha ha.

What is for the future?

This is a difficult question!

I am not really sure. Each day I try to be stronger. My passion towards my studies of fashion means the most in my life. Sometimes, I worry because I will have to work someday and take on a lot of responsibilities at some point in the future. First you start something just for the interest, then it becomes your duty. I think it’s cool and I want to train myself to be tougher and work with more experienced people.

I am planning to work for few years. I am going to try for some companies in Europe, and hopefully, I’ll manage to extend my UK visa. I really want to know more about London and  other cities in Europe. I love the history and fashion here, so I want to stay here longer.

In three words, how would you describe your whole CSM experience?

Respect, Company, Fashion or Tutors, Friends, Study : )


Tigran Avetisyan

photography: Jeff Boudreau

styling: Emelie & Stelios @ Un-categorized

make up & hair: Oohna Andersson

model: Aaron Elliot @ Models 1 

https://1granary.files.wordpress.com/2012/06/show-song.mp3Tigran’s soundtrack for the show

Tell us about your background and how did you get into Central Saint Martins?

I came to London from Saint Petersburg when I was 18 to study product design at Saint Martins. As much as I loved the discipline I realised that I wasn’t happy with the way the course was structured. There was scarcely any work and the atmosphere was dreadful. Many of us felt second-class because nobody would give a damn about non-fashion pathways. At the end of the first year I was lucky enough to bump into Christopher New (menswear course director) who saw my work and took me on his course.

 What did your parents think about this decision?

Initially they didn’t approve of it mostly because it meant they would have to support me financially for a bit longer than they had initially planned. Now it is all over I hope they are relieved.

 Describe these past few years at CSM?

Has it actually been years? It all flew by so quickly.

How was your placement year and what is the most valuable thing you learnt?

The year out was an amazing experience. Obviously each story is personal since it depends on the company one ends up in and the people he/she works with. But I think generally speaking it puts everything into perspective. You get a better idea of scale and value of your work at the end of it.

What did you think about the newly built Kings Cross site on your return?

In the beginning I was guttered to say the least. I think everybody agrees the ID cards made everyday life a struggle. As far as I can remember we were promised to roam freely between pathways. In reality we had less access to studios than ever. It felt like being a broiler inside a massive farm… Nonetheless as time went on it was fun to see what people are coming up with to outwit the system. For instance putting chairs in between doors to prevent them from locking, borrowing ID cards from classmates to get friends into the building, etc.. To me that’s when true creativity begins!

Please tell us about your final collection.

My starting point was the idea of repetition and tautology in particular. The bulk of the research was done in the university about the university. My wonderful classmates were the biggest inspiration. For example the chalked on messages are actually fragments of conversations I had heard whilst sewing the collection. Another major influence were the rebellious schoolboys from Jean Vigo’s 1933 classic ‘Zéro de conduite’. Otherwise there wasn’t that much research in a common sense of the word – most of the collection was improvised or designed by people around me.

How would you describe your style then?

I don’t think there is a visual point that I would always push from. I suppose I am still mapping out the territory. To me fashion is cheating and designers are liars. The game is to see how far you can take it without being caught.

We know you had won a bursary from the LVMH group.

Yes I did. And it was one of the most fantastic things that happened to me this year. Apart from money I have gained their moral support which to me was even more valuable.

When you look back at yourself in the first year, what would you advice to yourself now?

Learn to work while you rest and more importantly rest while you work.

What about the soon to be final years, any advice for them?

Don’t grow up – it’s a trap.

What is the best thing about the CSM experience?

To paraphrase Diane Vreeland’s quote: The best thing about CSM is LCF. I am sorry but we are even better than them at procrastination…

And finally what is for the future?

I do not like planning far ahead. I just made a limited amount of copies of the t-shirt from the second look to be sold on my webpage www.tigran.co.uk. I’ll see what the response is like and then decide what to do next.

Larry and Fleur

CJ Yao

Tell us about your background and how did you get into Central Saint Martins?

Well, I already had my BA in Fashion Design in Shanghai, China before applying to Central Saint Martins. In fact, I had an opportunity to study at Central Saint Martins starting from my second year, but I didn’t go: I delayed the offer to finish my degree. On my final year I got the Best Achievement Prize and was the first runner-up at the Asian Young Fashion Designers Contest during the Singapore Fashion Week. However, I didn’t really want to get a job straight after graduating: I thought I wasn’t ready yet. One day I woke up, I dreamt of an old man, who said, “You shall be sorry for it”. Suddenly, I regreted what I had done and I applied for Womenswear Design pathway at CSM again. Unfortunately, I couldn’t start from the second year… I had to start the course from the first year all over again. Well, I deserved all of it.

Describe these past few years at CSM? And how was your final year?

It was a bit tough, but also wonderful. I’ve learnt how to get over negative things and always have more positive energy when new challenges arise.
I could hear my heart beat whilst working on my final collection. I am glad that I managed to organize everything myself. Final year is not the end, it is just the beginning.

Tell us about your final collection.

The collection is named “Wood Be”, which is grounded in the combination of creating tubes, lines, strings, fringes, as well as waves in different visual ways. I was inspired by ancient musical instruments, and I transferred it into the forms of knit and crochet. Also, the collection’s aim was to explore the idea of using natural alternative materials as the primary source. Wood is one of the most valuable treasures of the nature, and as one of the goals, I tried to refine the traditional techniques of using wood and crafts to fit into the contemporary look.

Each piece represent my personal impression of an ideal woman. These women “wood be” the arrogant and limpid poets. They seems to be hidden in my protection garments.

What were the doubts during the whole process?

I was not quite sure how to combine wood with fabric to make them look perfect together. Also, I had to think about making the pieces not heavy and not fragile either.

What would you advice to future final years?

Don’t stress out. Just be brave! Do not be scared of the mistakes you make: you can always find out new creative ways to resolve them.

What is on your playlist?

Maximilian Hecker, Coco Rosie, Massive Attack

The show’s music I edited from Cocorosie’s Bear Hides and Buffalo.

What’s for the future?

You will find “C.J YAO” in your wardrobes.

In three words, how would you describe your whole CSM experience?

Hateful, Lovable, Irresistible.

Words of Wisdom from Yingqi Wang




Quote of the day

CSM Walls

Maia Bergman

Maia Bergman is the hottest Central Saint Martins graduate from Fashion Print pathway, who has successfully presented her final collection, which shimmered with beautiful whites, real flesh and pastel colours. Maia used plain and see through fabrics, and turned them into precious textiles by spilling the shiny cheerful beads all over. The collection was a success and a true bead miracle! Originally from Argentina, Bergman has not only produced an exciting collection with beautiful and desired clothes, but actually showed how girly cuteness can easily flow into hot sexiness.

SUMMARY: Girls want to wear Maia’s designs. Boys want the girls in them…Though at CSM, some boys want these clothes without the girls. Either way, that’s all that matters. Hotness, Desire, Sex…Maia, we got the message!

1Granary would like to congratulate Maia Bergman with becoming a 2012 Central Saint Martins graduate and thanks for the interview and all the fun and sex delivered onto the runway of the Final Show.

Tell us about your background and how did you get into Central Saint Martins?

I was applying to Parsons in New York, but one day I woke up from a dream, thinking that I should try to apply to Central Saint Martins instead. It felt like something impossible back then. But I just applied and tried my luck, got into Foundation course, then the BA…

How old were you when you decided to become a fashion designer?

Still thinking about it.

Did you dress up Barbies when you were a kid?

I actually used to draw my own “barbies” because they only came with one outfit. I mean, Barbie can’t go for brunch with the parents in her cheerleader outfit…

Describe these past three years at CSM?

The best, so much fun. It is very important not to listen to anyone else but yourself, and genuinely believe in yourself. To have discipline in working hard and going out as much. Also, not to take clothes too seriously…

 What do you find fascinating in school and what frustrates you?

The canteen. That whole american high school vibe with the trays and tables I find funny, but we don’t have the popular kids, or the geeks, or the eco warriors……just all freaks. In the best possible way of course!

I find frustrating all the attempts of the new technology in the building: the photocopy machines, the barrier to get in, the cards to open doors, the e-store to buy print supplies, etc etc. Just no.

“… we don’t have the popular kids, or the geeks, or the eco warriors……just all freaks.”

Tell us about your final collection.

I really like beads. When I first sat down to think about the collection, I didn’t know what I wanted, but I knew exactly what I did not want: no black, no tomboy, no linings, no screen printing.Photography: Sabine Le Marchand
Styling: Lucila Meller
Hair & Make up: Hannah Lonergan
Model: Agathe Chapman @ Storm

Why plastic beads?

Cheap glamour is irresistible.

“Cheap glamour is irresistible.”

How did you avoid black?

 M.: I got really into pink. It took me a while, but the shortcut, I guess, is to watch Clueless and Legally Blonde several times, that should do.

What’s the playlist that your perfect girl listens to?

My Bloody Valentine, Jesus & Mary Chain, Nicki Minaj…..happy grunge and catchy plastic pink stuff.

Do you think it is possible for the fashion students to date during the final year?

Haha. I guess it is if you are organized enough…and if not too.

%d bloggers like this: