By Emily Jade Ricalton
After Quench Fashion’s exploration of London Fashion Week SS20, the award-winning fashion duo, VIN+OMI, caught our creative attention and made us increasingly aware of our interests surrounding sustainable fashion.
The multi-media designers were awarded a NESTA accreditation due to their dedication to sustainable approaches, focusing upon all sectors and processes of the fashion industry, including both business factors and textiles design.
Not only have they promoted unique sense of style with their bold prints and stunning garments, but the designers have become two of the most socially leading pioneers of the modern fashion world, inspiring such strong environmental movements in top fashion houses, like Gucci.
Being inspired by notions of punk music, the duo uses this subculture to stimulate their designs, embarking on shocking involvements within fashion that are unique to their competitors. By collaborating with music royalty, such as Debbie Harry, and actually royalty, VIN+OMI are a brand to watch out for. Not only are they shaping the future of our ever-changing fashion industry, but they are also saving the declining longevity of our fragile climate.
Here at Quench Fashion, we were fortunate enough to have conducted an interview with these environmental activists, exploring the inspiration behind their recent SS20 LFW collection.
QUENCH FASHION: What first inspired you to step into sustainable fashion?
VIN+OMI: It was the lack of availability of eco/sustainable textiles – so we recycled.
QF: What do recycled, reused and sustainable clothes mean to your brand?
VIN+OMI: Recycled – We recycle plastics from our International collection schemes, which are mainly from VIN+OMI river and ocean clean ups
Reused – We reuse clothing and materials for part of our collections – for example, last season we reused jeans and our shoes are always made up from a combination of shoes destined for landfill
Sustainable – We produce a range of 20 sustainable textiles – all are produced via eco/sustainable processes
QF: How would you define your brand’s style and aesthetic? If someone was first introduced to your brand concept, how would you describe yourselves?
QF: You quoted that you were inspired by ‘Camden Punk’, why is this? Has the punk movement always been such an influence?
VIN+OMI: We have always loved the ethos of the London punk movement – its rebellious side appeals to us and keeps cropping up in our work
QF: How did you come about working with Prince Charles? What was he like and what were his opinions towards recycled fashion and your designs altogether?
VIN+OMI: Prince Charles suggested we take his nettles from Highgrove. He’s a very committed supporter of eco processes. He has been very supportive throughout the project. We had full control of all design and processes.
QF: How did it feel working on a project with the Prince of Wales?
VIN+OMI: We’ve been lucky enough to work with some of the world’s most recognised people and each time it’s a great privilege. We pick and choose who to work with carefully. Working with Prince Charles wasn’t just about his high profile status, but it was more about his total commitment to eco practices and respect for the environment.
QF: What are your main issues with the fashion industry today and how would you like to see this change?
VIN+OMI: We have issues with many angles of the fashion industry and we really sit outside of the main fashion industry. One of our main issues is with the British Fashion Council who insist that designers have 6 stockists to be considered to be placed on their schedule. Their schedule promotes volume of sales and rather than quality of process and standard of design, sustainable and eco credentials etc. The BFC need to revisit their selection process and many other ways they give awards to their designers.
QF: What are your main concerns with the environment?
VIN+OMI: People’s misuse of it
QF: Are there any future collaborations that you’d like to do to promote your thoughts and ideas around the environment?
VIN+OMI: We are currently working with a range of industries and companies on sustainable and eco-projects – we like to introduce creative thinking into the way companies approach their sustainability
QF: What do you think about Extinction Rebellion? Do their protests fit your ideas around sustainability and ethical fashion?
VIN+OMI: They have the right ideas and need to get a bit more coordinated in their approach. We do believe that aspects of LFW are outdated and should be changed. We support ER in principle.
QF: What are your plans for the future?
VIN+OMI: We have big plans…
QF: Are there any sustainable fashion brands that inspire you now?
VIN+OMI: Patagonia’s commitment is admirable and small brands with perfect approaches are great. There are many smaller brands that are doing great work. Larger brands, like Vivienne Westwood, aren’t fully sustainable – it’s harder for large brands that have emerged with non-sustainable methods to change!
QF: What fabrics, patterns and textures do you like to work with? How do you make these sustainable for your brand?
VIN+OMI: All of our fabrics are our own – we change the patterns and textures each season
QF: How did it feel watching your SS20 collection walk down the runway?
VIN+OMI: This is our 14thshow – we don’t realise what the show was like until we see the video afterwards!
QF: What is it like creating and designing for an ethical brand? How different is it to commercial fashion?
VIN+OMI: A LOT more thought has to be put into every process and working day!
It is obvious to see that VIN+OMI are definitely a brand to watch out for, especially with the rise of fast fashion damaging our environment with issues like climate change and increasing waste. And due to these reasons, we just can’t wait to see what the duo have to bring to the future of fashion!
A link to VIN+OMI’s online accounts will be attached below.
Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/vinandomi/?hl=en