Tuesday, 7 October 2008

An interview with Lulu Kennedy

We were fortunate enough to nab an interview with Lulu Kennedy and here it is! For those of you who don't recognise the name, you will soon enough! Lulu Kennedy's Fashion East has become hugely influencial since its launch in 2000 (so influencial in fact that she was named in Evening Standard's 1000 Influencial List) as a supporter of emerging talent at London Fashion Week and lest we forget, she's played an instrumental role in bringing us the MAN shows as well! She has recently been involved with Creative30 where VICE, Volvo and The Independent have teamed up to find and celebrate the UK's next generation of promising creative talent (the judges have now selected the complete Creative 30 and it is now up to the online world to vote for their favourite). Here we talk about what she has been up to, her thoughts on the industry and her favourite menswear designers!

You are often touted as Fashion's fairy godmother, was it this trait, to help others and transform their lives in the process, which brought you to Creative 30?

I'm at my happiest when I'm helping talented people so it was great to be asked to get involved with Creative 30.

How difficult a task was it to select the shortlist from the wealth of submissions?
I am seriously impressed by the talent and diversity of genres – god knows how we are supposed to pick one winner – its going to be very hard to choose!

How important is it that there are opportunities out there like Creative 30?

It's an incredible opportunity and prize, it's so important for people when they're starting out to get recognised and supported like this.

On the blog we've discussed the great work you do in nurturing design talent for Fashion East and most significantly for us (as a men's style blog) MAN, unfortunately there is only so much certain collectives can do, how would you like the fashion industry to change as a whole?

I'd love to set up a menswear sponsorship scheme with the same weight as New Gen, so that all the young designers who do MAN have the next lot of sponsorship in place. I'd love to see a London menswear week develop properly. And my favourite daydream is that all the great British designers like McQueen come back and show in London, it would be the best fashion week on the international circuit.

How do you select your next crop of designers?

Purely by instinct. I also try and keep a certain balance within the lineup so that its not repetitive or one sided – its best when there's a healthy mixture of styles.

What advice would you give young designers out there?

Don't do your own label unless you're really talented and prepared to work your self like a dog…being lazy or mediocre is not a good look.

Who are your favourite menswear designers?

I am mad about menswear. I wear some of the gear from my MAN show designers, like Casette Playa, Kim Jones, James Long and Christopher Shannon – seriously!

Who are your style icons? If you were a man, who would they be?

Grace Jones, Nick Cave, Iggy Pop, Terry Hall from the Specials – their style blows my mind.

What's next for Lulu Kennedy?

I'm thinking about how I can help the designers on an international platform. Don't get me wrong – I love London - I feel we should do more events, whether it's a party in New York or a press trip to Japan, or a presentation in Milan…it'd be fun to challenge myself to do something like that!!

Finally, what would you like to achieve/how would you like to be remembered?

I like to see my designers do well, that makes me super happy.


Anonymous said...

Nice interview. There needs to be more people like Lulu Kennedy who give young designers a platform to shoecase their work.

Matthew Spade said...

great little interview, she comes across as really nice even through such a short conversation.

i was just wondering, what do the style salvage team do as professions?

Style Salvage Steve said...

mat ahoy: It's not the size but what you do with it which matters most! Ha! We are professional bloggers...I'm sitting in my pants in my room typing this! I wish! I am a marketeer and EJ is a civil servant.

EJ said...

Steve, you massive doofus, I'm not a civil servant! I'm a public servant... jeez, get it right! ;)

Matthew Spade said...

ohhh well now i know, i was just curious if any of your were in the fashion industry you see. ive got to start looking for a industry placement for next year you see.

woops on the civil servant/public servant boob.

Niyi Maximus Crown said...

Great interview. I met her briefly once. She comes across as a very lovely lady.

Style Salvage Steve said...

EJ and mat ahoy - I am a boob. Apologies all round!
niyi crown - I just wish that there were more people like her in the industry!


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