The darling of the luxury line fashion followers, Vanessa G reveals her secrets
My garments are a sensory experience.
I started my label as a means to celebrate what I love most – art and fashion. Like art, fashion is a luxury product and I’ve challenged what women consider to be every day wear by creating clothing that shouldn’t be saved for special occasions but be enjoyed every day. My range is called Art’Outure and my garments are like mobile art, taking it to new places and new audiences. They may be sculpted, textured or reflect prints that make you feel nostalgic.
I support emerging artists.
When you wear one of my designers you become a walking art exhibition; showcasing not just your own personality but the vision of the artist who’s designs the garment is based on. I am constantly on the look out for artists who’s talent have so far been unrecognised but have a lot to bring to the creative world and this is an international search. I work with fine artists, photographers and sculptures and use their work to inspire colours, textures and prints.
Fashion is my passion.
I’m different to other designers as my work is fuelled by my passion rather than my profession. My background is in mining but I’ve always had a natural artistic flair and going into fashion as a second career gives me a unique chance to combine my business acumen with the creative industry.
My signature style has international appeal.
I have Indian origins but I live and design in South Africa so my work has a very global appearance. I grew up on a rose plantation so flowers and nature are a reoccurring theme. I combine African prints with Indian techniques like handprinting and embroidery while my zips are from the UK - wearing one of my pieces makes you feel like you’re well travelled!
Every design has a story.
One of my favourite dresses is based on a photograph that shows a field of flowers that was taken in Pretoria, South Africa. These flowers only bloom for two months of the year and I wanted to capture their magic. It is a 3D print that even shows the trees along the roadside, it’s a talking point and makes great conversation when people ask you where you got that dress…
Choice is important.
Every season I work with a new designer to give the shopper a chance to try new looks and styles while enjoying a label that captures the uniqueness they aspire to when they go shopping. My current chief designer Ashish N Soni, is one of India’s most respected fashion designers who is ensuring my brand of wearable art is apparent in the essence of every garment. I specialise in dresses, skirts and blouses that create natural and flattering silhouettes.
Fashion should be aspirational.
It’s not about mass-produced garments, but wanting to own beautiful things that other people don’t have. My customer is a woman who is well heeled, appreciates the artistic nature of dressing up and seeks to make a statement. A lot of my designs are 3D, a new and daring concept in fashion such as huge roses, that will really get you noticed.
Look out for my pop-up shops!
The label is less than a year old and I am currently working on plans to open my European flagship store in London. Until then we are travelling the world with pop up stores so you can enjoy my clothing wherever you are or purchase them online. Most designs are limited edition with just a handful made so snap them up while you can!
For more information visit www.vanessag.co.uk
Interview by Momtaz Begum-Hossain