Friday, 25 October 2013

Emerging Talent: Matthew Houston

I first discovered Matthew Houston's work when looking through this year's Scottish Fashion Awards nominations, as he was deservedly put forward for the Graduate Designer of the Year category. He studied Fashion Design at Herriot Watt University and is currently based in Glasgow.

Matthew's graduate collection combines a plethora of luxurious textures such as fur, silk organza, jacquard, sheepskin and cashmere. I also love the unusual way the collection is cut, including splices which create structure at the hips.

I had been lucky enough to borrow some of Matthew's garments for a photoshoot last weekend with the amazing photographer Cristina Carra Caso. It was so much fun to style with the pieces I picked and the team loved the looks too. I won't be able to share the results for a while as we are hoping to get the images published in a magazine. Until then, here is the collection from his A/W13 Lookbook and my interview with him.







www.matthew-houston.com
Photography - Keir Laird
Make-up - Sarah Macinnes
Model - Bethany @ Model Team

When did you realise you wanted to become a fashion designer?

Initially I had always thought I had wanted to be a marine biologist, however this idea quickly went out the window after attending a weeks art course in high school. Being part of a creative community for the first time was very exciting and a prospect I knew I wanted to be a part of. The fashion background mostly came from growing up around lots of strong women who all had very fervently passionate opinions on dressing and appearance, something that is quite prominent in the collection. My weekends were often spent trailing around shops with my mother and sister and it didn't take long for me to conceive an eye for detail and cut -in addition to the fantasy of clothing. I love the concept that fashion can transport you to whole other worlds, escapism in material form.

What is the concept behind your graduate collection?

The collection is a uniform dichotomy of the most sophisticated female persona. Drawing inspirations from a diverse range of subjects, the two fountains of ideas stemmed from the inextricable link of cults and the female form, producing an understated glamour with a twisted edge. Figures such as Guy Bourdin, The Manson Family and Jim Jones were cited, alongside classics such as Girl, Interrupted and The Crucible. I wanted to meld two seemingly obscure ideas into one to produce something fresh but with a commercial edge.

You have previously interned for Christopher Kane and Erdem. Have either of these designers made an impact on the way you think as a designer?

Both have definitely influenced me. Christopher's avant garde aesthetic is constantly pushing boundaries; from extraordinary textiles such as the jelly bows from Spring/Summer 2013 to his cuts that frame the body. His work has made me think beyond the conventional to produce garments that are truly unique but with a wearability in mind. Erdem's meticulous eye for detail taught me much about creating perfectly made clothes that will last forever in addition to his superb ability for colour combining to produce palettes that test traditional methods of dressing.

If you could choose any celebrity to wear one of your designs, who would it be and what would they wear?

I would love for Carey Mulligan to wear the pink jacquard dress. I think her beautiful platinum hair and statuesque figure would only enhance the beauty of the dress.

What's next for you?

I am planning to move to London for new ventures as well as producing my next collection which will be released at some point next year. I want to continue developing my aesthetic but perhaps bring it to a younger and wider audience for the next collection.



I am so proud that Scotland continues to produce such incredible talent within the world of fashion. It's only a matter of time until Matthew Houston is up there with the likes of Christopher Kane and Jonathan Saunders. Mark my words!

Love from Lou Lou