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Last week, we were lucky enough to sit down with none other than internationally renowned fashion designer Stella McCartney. From ethics to style and starting out, find out what Stella had to say to us on all things fashion.


Stella on starting out...

I wanted to have a business. I think what inspired me was that people around me really liked my clothes and it seemed like there wasn't stuff like that out there at that time. My advice would be to work hard, there's no way of avoiding it; you have to work hard and be committed and be true to yourself. Don't try to be cool if you're not cool, don't try and do sports if it doesn't come naturally to you - just be totally true to yourself and people will respond to that.

Stella on the fashion industry and ethics...

I find it quite old fashioned. It's been set up in a way for so long that it's easier and there's a lot of money to be made sadly. Our non-leather products are much more expensive than leather ones would be, so we take a lower margin. I wrote a letter to Obama and asked him to look at the import taxes the US charge on importing non leather goods. The industry is geared up to make things unethically and it's the biggest challenge to avoid it. It needs to change and I think it will ,but it will perhaps take a while longer.

Stella on ethics and style...

Part of me doesn't want to preach at people and act like I'm perfect. We're not perfect brand but it is interesting to give people the ethical information. If we give people the information they can make up their own mind. I don't think you don't need to compromise style for ethical reasons - a lot of people think it will be hempy and crafty. I stand by that I want people to come into my shop and not have a clue that it's not leather.

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Stella on returning to London Fashion Week...

We did it because the company is based here, I was born here. It was a decision to celebrate London. It's a massive year to be in London and we just wanted to celebrate it.

Stella on the high-street copying designers...

It's a funny one that. On one side it's flattering. When it first started happening I was like wow it's amazing. You walk in and you're like it's my t-shirt and you think its really funny and it's a great compliment. Then you get a bit older and then it gets kind of irritating. Just because they can sometimes get it in the stores quicker than you and the different price points it can be frustrating. But I think its just life. I don't really think about it. It is what it is. I think the high street is great - as long as they are responsible retailers making it in the right way.

Stella on celebrities...

I'd love to dress Jodie Foster although I think Armani has got her - one day! I always wanted to dress Meryl Streep and she's just started wearing our clothes so I'm really chuffed about that. A celebrity wearing our clothes is not what drives me. I'm more embarrassing when I see someone on the street with one of my bags - I'm like "nice bag!!" It's really embarrassing - I need to stop actually.

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Stella on other designers...

If I'm honest I don't get a huge amount of time to check other designers out. I think that London is a really great place for design right now, I think it always has been. I think British designers are kicking ass right now.

Stella on menswear...

People are mentioning doing a menswear range to me more and I would love to do mens. The one thing with me is that we do a lot at the moment; kids, lingerie, RTW, adidas and the Olympics coming up. I like to have everything covered off, I like to know everything else is in a good place before I start a new venture. There will be a moment where I'll probably think about it - but it will have to be the right moment. I'm very inspired by menswear it comes into a lot of my work and I studied at Saville Row for three years so I'd love to do it at some stage.

Stella's stylish staples...

A good tshirt, a great pair of jeans. I do this and I through everything cos' I think you need a great shoe too. I think you need great underwear. I actually start an outfit with my underwear.

Stella on new online media...

We look at it as a more important way of communicating with people in this day and age. The fashion industry can be slow on this side of things, but we're trying to use it as a way to connect. It's not easy; we find it quite complicated and a hard area to navigate. We're conscious of blogs and we're a young team and take it seriously - we all live it every day. Everything we do, all material we create we appreciate its going into another world of communication. We don't just do print for a magazine. We think how can this flower move? How can this logo light up? We take it in different ways. We enjoy it and realise the importance of it.

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