Back to Basics Collection by FAUSTINE STEINMETZ Handwoven and Handmade

This season Steinmetz takes her collection “back to basics”, looking at the numerous ways in which a staple item can be reproduced, using illusions to create fabrics which are not what they seem at first glance. For SS16, the designer also acknowledges the artist that made her want to become a designer – Joseph Kosuth. After seeing “One and Three Chairs” in a book at the age of 14, Steinmetz believes her mind was opened to visual arts in a way that she still cannot explain today.

Faustine Steinmetz is the latest recipient of COTTON USA’s highly coveted sponsorship for SS16, an advocacy programme that helps up-and-coming designers to showcase their talent and creativity, bringing the vision for their collection to life through the versatility of U.S cotton.

Steinmetz puts her own twist on iconic pieces, and this includes weaving her own fabric using a traditional handloom in her London studio. This attention to detail to create quality, long-lasting garments is just one of the merits that made Steinmetz a great fit for the COTTON USA sponsorship.

The sponsorship programme has been a valuable platform for budding designers to elevate their work. Previous recipients of the sponsorship include Richard Nicholl, Meadham Kirchhoff, PPQ, Preen, Louise Gray and palmer//harding.

Steinmetz said: “I am thrilled to have been selected to receive the sponsorship for a second season. Support for young designers like myself provides a platform to express our creativity and showcase our vision.” She continued “What I love about U.S. cotton is not only the exceptional quality and versatility, but also knowing that the fibres I am using to hand make my designs have been responsibly produced – this is very important to me when sourcing my materials.”

The Parisian-born designer began her studies at Atelier Chardon Savard in Paris before moving to London to complete her Masters at Central Saint Martins, under the guidance of Professor OBE Louise Wilson. Having worked for the likes of Jeremy Scott and Henrik Vibskov, Faustine set up her label in early 2013 after acquiring her first handloom. All of Steinmetz’s pieces are made in accordance with her belief in craftsmanship over trend, designing staple pieces for the everyday woman.

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Mindful, Fair Trade Jewellery by Mosami

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Jewellery can be so much more than adornment. Often we attach deep meaning to pieces because they were a gift, an heirloom, a memory, a way of saying thank you, well done or I love you. The pieces by Mosami can mean all of these things, but importantly they also come with a symbolism of their own. Mosami is a brand combining beautiful jewellery design with the benefits of mindfulness, a feature I find captivating. If you seek to find greater courage, success or happiness, there is an ethically crafted piece to suit your mood along with an accompanying simple mindfulness ritual to practice whenever the moment takes you.

Mosami was founded by Sarah Greenaway, a woman passionate about sustainability, peace and beautiful things. We met up over coffee to chat about her plans for Mosami, my plans for Ethical High Street and the global need to continue moving towards a greener economy. Mosami pieces (necklaces, earrings and bracelets) are made from recycled or Fairtrade silver. As Sarah explained, she’d like to use more Fairtrade silver but as it is fairly new on the market, availability cannot currently keep pace with demand. In fact, with just one Fairtrade certified mine in the world, Sarah is part of a small group pioneering the Fairtrade metal. The silver is sourced from Sotrami, a mine in Peru where a dedicated team have worked hard to gain Fairtrade accreditation.

All of the Mosami pieces are designed by British designers and made by men and women highly skilled in their craft. Mosami aims to raise awareness of the shocking environmental impact of artisanal mining, offering jewellery that is beautiful to wear, and made with respect for people and planet.

So how does Mosami team jewellery with mindfulness?

“With a little practice jewellery can do more than just remind us of happy times passed, it can remind us to make positive choices for a happy future too. Mosami pieces are created to inspire beautiful personal rituals that blend empowering thought patterns with everyday routine”

Just as Buddhist prayer beads help aid meditation, Mosami show you how to use their pieces to take time out and focus your thoughts. I love the Wisdom Cuff (£125) that Sarah was wearing when we met. Made from 100% Fairtrade silver the “Words to Live By” cuffs are a tribute to the Celtic reverence for the wise oak. Each is decorated with oak leaves and acorns, and discreetly inscribed with words of wisdom from icons of more recent times.

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Not only do the inscribed quotes by Mother Theresa, Mahatma Ghandi and Charlie Chaplin provide a mindful thought to empower you through the day, but the bracelet itself can provide reminder to be true to your own wisdom as you gently touch the hand-beaten metal as a reminder to slow down and take a mindful moment.

Browsing online you can shop by product, wish and ritual. So –

to improve positive thinking and to feel lucky every day try the Lucky Day Clover Necklace (£70) and accompanying Lucky Day ritual.

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Or be reminded of your inner happiness with the Marigold necklace (£60) and accompanying happiness ritual.

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You can shop Mosami online at: www.mosami.co.uk

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Uni Project Turned Brit Business: Get Made in Britain Clothes Online

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The British Clothing Co is a brand new online retailer of sustainably sourced, British manufactured accessories and clothing.

The idea was originally dreamed up as part of a university project in 2013, as Hollie, then studying Fashion Marketing at Nottingham Trent, wanted to research into an area she felt strongly about; ethical and sustainable fashion. At the time, there was becoming slightly more awareness of British manufacturing due to the likes of Mary Portas’ “Kinky Knickers” campaign, along with some major retailers releasing British made ranges.

From here she researched into consumer attitudes towards fashion consumption, whilst also speaking to a range of manufacturers within the British Isles. She found that most of these manufacture small-scale production lines and even bespoke products, making sure they are of the highest quality, and meaning they will last for season after season. This is the complete antithesis of the disposable, fast-fashion many British consumers have become accustomed too.

After graduating, gaining industry experience and doing some traveling, Hollie decided in early 2015 to put the ideas into action and started The British Clothing Co. Putting together a brand with a strong ethos and range of suppliers who resonate the same values of quality and craftsmanship. The mission being to educate and inspire consumers of the wide selection of quality garments produced from a variety of brands within Britain, proving that fashion can be sustainable, for the environment and their local economy.

At present, The British Clothing Co stocks pieces from a variety of brands from across the British Isles. For the sartorial gentleman they stock garments by Meccanica Cycles and Quantock Clothing, including Chinos, Polo Shirts, Merino Knitwear and Polo Shirts, along with a small preview-collection from Living in Light. For the classically stylish woman, there is a wider range of boho-inspired dresses from Living In Light, along with Hugget Jackets and incredibly feminine workwear by Client London. Along with accessories, including hard-wearing canvas backpacks by Sidewinder Apparel and up-cycled clutch bags by Reniqlo.

Check out these pieces and more at www.thebritishclothingco.co.uk. Additional lines to be added soon!

100% British wool pencil skirt, £69

100% British wool pencil skirt, £69

Made in London stripe backpack, £139

Made in London stripe backpack, £139

Made in Britain menswear

Made in Britain menswear

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