Made By Mrs M

Inspiration: Bella Freud

Textiles, Fashion, InspirationKate Marsden

Ah, a new occasional series for this here blog. I used to write inspiration posts, which were sometimes popular, but I stopped quite a while ago. I mainly wrote them for filler to be honest and as we all know, filler on a blog is never a good thing. Anyway, I started putting together a mood board for my next fabric collection and hit upon the idea of inspiration mood boards - not just what's inspiring me now, but what's inspired me in the past too. So, for the first one, we're heading right back (almost) to the start...

It's Spring 1994. I'm about to embark on my GCSEs, I have a new boyfriend, the sun is shining, and most importantly I have that place at art college (unless I completely fail my exams which I'm pretty certain I won't - and I don't).

Each month I avidly devour the pages of Vogue, and early that spring I stumbled upon a collection which ended up being one of the most talked about that season. I loved it so much that it's continued to inspire not just my fabric designs but my actual wardrobe to this day... I give you Bella Freud's s/s 1994 collection...

Seen in my mood board above with some of the things it inspired at the time - my final collection (top left) and my sketchbooks for a range of projects (bottom left). I think I drove my fellow students nuts with my love of Bella Freud. I would not be moved. The whole thing came to a climax though in (I think) the spring of 1995 when I was still a first year. We went on a trip to London for the week and the second years were heading off one evening to Kingston University to attend a lecture, with Bella Freud. I didn't get the chance for jealousy though as my tutor took me to one side before they'd even announced it to let me know I could go with them - the only first year - as I was such a huge fan. The condition was that I had to ask a question, then talk to the rest of the first years about it afterwards. I was in (albeit mildly terrified!).

I can't remember what I asked her, but I recall her being really lovely and massively shy of public speaking (she probably isn't nowadays as she's had years of practice!). I also remember her wearing this amazing blue jacket/beige scarf combi which I spent the next couple of years attempting to emulate. I even got to speak to her briefly at the end of the lecture. Meeting her definitely didn't dampen my love and she's continued to inspire me to this day. The collection above though still has to be my favourite (if you're not sure you remember it think of Kate Moss in a black and pink tasseled bikini - it was that one).

Looking at the colours above, it's funny how they bear a striking resemblance to my Instagram at the moment!