EXCLUSIVE! Catwalk Queen meets fashion designer Matthew Williamson ahead of London Fashion Week
Last night at the Canon 'We Speak Image' event, I was lucky enough to grab a few moments with one of my fashion idols - Matthew Williamson - to talk about the collection he created for the campaign, and also about his Fashion Week plans. We shot a short video of our chat, which you can see below...
Sketch was very busy that night and even though we filmed away from the crowds we know the sound isn't great, so see below for a transcript of the interview, as well as more info about Canon's We Speak Image campaign...
Gemma talks to Matthew Williamson...
Catwalk Queen: What was it like creating a collection based on images from the great British public?
Matthew Williamson: It was great, it was a really interesting project. They came to us about March this year, and I was intrigued to see what variety of images we would get. It was open to the general public, anyone of any age, any background...there was no demographic. Anyone could apply so I liked that it was crazy...you got so many amazing images that I just edited it down to my favourite few.
CQ: What was it about your favourites that inspired you so much?
MW: There were images that to me were quite naturalistic; nature, landscape inspired images. Traditional English images. Then on the opposite end of the spectrum there were some quite technologically advanced images, with amazing neon light and more graphic quality to the images. So I picked those two extremes and put them together.
CQ: It's really amazing how much the collection looks like your work [considering it's based on photographs from an outside source]
MW: Well it has to!
CQ: It really IS Matthew Williamson
MW: Yeah, absolutely. That was the goal, to make it look like it could be part of my own line.
CQ: I have to say welcome back to London! You're back for London Fashion Week to celebrate your ten year anniversary. Was it really important to you to come back to London for this season?
MW: Yeah. I've been showing in New York for five years now and it works really well over there, but as you say it's my tenth year in September and this will be my twentieth collection, so it just feels very nice to be back where I live and where my studio is. So it's exciting, and the show's next Wednesday...
CQ: It's going to be fantastic! I remember when I applied for fashion Uni I actually wrote about your first collection in my essay, so it's really amazing...
MW: A full circle! Here we are ten years on.
CQ: Yep! So one thing that's amazed me is that you've had time to work on this project for Canon with everything else that you do. You have a Debenhams line and you're also designing for Pucci. How do you find time to sleep?!
MW: Well, it's difficult! Now I'm going to go back to work, I have to finish off the collection! So it's tough, you know, it's a really busy time but I've got a good team of people. There's 35 members of staff that work for us, so it's all about getting the right people to do the right jobs. I'm more of an editor.
CQ: I know what that's like!
Since Matthew is such a busy man (and since I was running the risk of saying some really stupid if I continued to be so fashionably starstruck...) we tie up the interview here with our thanks!
Photographs of the Canon 'We Speak Image' collection can be seen here and more information can be found on the Canon website. The limited edition Umbrella will be on sale at Matthew Williamson's London store, the event venue 'Sketch' on London's Conduit Street, at London Fashion Week and at London Fashion Weekend for £50 with all profits going to the British Red Cross.
Many thanks to Canon for inviting us along to the party, and to Matthew Williamson for speaking to Catwalk Queen.