I was lucky enough to snag an interview with Garance at the launch of her collection for Kate Spade NY the other week…
LPA: At the risk of asking a deeply dull question, how/why did your collaboration with Kate Spade come about? Where they a brand you’d always worn or felt a particular affiliation with?
GD: I think I told my agent one day that I liked the brand – I’ve always loved going in the store and touching everything, I love the bright colours – and at the same time they were thinking of working with me because they had seen an illustration on my blog and were inspired by it. It was a specific illustration that I’d done in a very less refined way, like a sketch. So we met up to talk about how we could collaborate and agreed on the idea of a cocktail party. Then I did the sketch, came up with a text, and we played around with it.
LPA: Having previously created a limited edition t-shirt for Gap, this isn’t your first foray into design although I can imagine that the two projects have been quite different. What has been the greatest challenge of designing your collection for Kate Spade NY?
GD: It was really, really different. For Gap I took an illustration I had already done and put it on a t-shirt, but this is 3D. That was the biggest challenge. I had to keep in mind that my sketches were going to be repeated endlessly on a fabric so I had to think about sizing and how it would look on the body. That’s where the Kate Spade team were very helpful!
LPA: Do you have a favourite piece, or piece your most proud of, out of the collection?
GD: Yeah, I love that shirt (below). I also love the matching skirt, I would wear it with a jean shirt or something. I also like the printed ‘Pardon my French’ t-shirts because it’s the name of my show and the jumper I’m wearing because it’s so simple.
LPA: When you launched your site back in 2006, blogging was still relatively unheard of. Did you ever envisage the extent to which it would change your life? Was there a specific moment where you thought; right, I’m really going to make a career out of this?
GD: No, not at all! It’s over six years ago since I started and back then having a blog wasn’t something you admitted to. It was something you were almost ashamed of, you know, like “do you have no life? You don’t have friends, you need to have a blog?” So at that time I wasn’t even telling people what I was doing. Now, seeing where I am six years later, I could never imagine this would have happened. I’m still like wow, this is great, I’m having a lot of fun.
LPA: On that subject, what do you think of the standard of the new generation of fashion bloggers on the scene? How do you think they compare to you, Scott, Susie Lau and other longer established names?
GD: I think blogging is changing, but everybody is inventing their own way. I just think that now some blogs try to become magazines. Some do it very well, but blogging is always something that’s going to talk to people and I think that’s what makes my blog special. It’s my voice. It’s very personal and it’s something I cherish.
LPA: As an incredibly successful blogger, photographer, illustrator and now designer, what advice would you give to someone trying to break into the fashion industry?
GD: Intern all the time. Intern when you’re studying, intern during the summer and you’ll get a job no problem. People see if you’re a hard worker and you’re smart.
Love Ella. X