“I took the hobby of trainspotting and turned it on its head”
Pippa Harries comes from a small market town in the Lake District and has recently graduated from Kingston University London with ‘Full Stop. End of the Line’. Her final collection subverts present-day preconceptions of trainspotting. The garments are formed from an innovative combination of textiles, mixing waterproof and woollen materials.
The graphic elements of Pippa Harries collection, asymmetric lines and shapes, represent symbols of the railway. They conjure images of tracks and signals, portraying the train journey that is mapped upon her garments. Pippa’s concept resonates through her use of bold colours and abstract silhouettes, creating a stylish take on trainspotting.
Can you describe your collection ‘Full Stop. End of the Line’?
The collection comprises of garments that mix waterproof fabrics with knitted work. The outfits include an asymmetric trench coat and a long woollen dress with waterproof trousers and a stripy, colourful top to match.
Tell us about your inspiration for the collection?
The collection is based on the culture of train-spotters and trainspotting. I combined the “nerdish” stereotype and further misconceptions surrounding the hobby within pieces that integrated knitwear with waterproof materials. The works of Nigel Peake and Josef Albers influenced my ideas for the collection. I liked their striking use of colour and their presentation of bold shapes. I employed these ideas in my work through the use of transfer vinyl and striped neon details.
The environment of the Lake District, a place that is so different to London, was also an influence for my collection.
The practicality of the fabrics I used meant I could take my outfits back home and wear them.
What did you aim to communicate through your collection?
When trainspotting started as a hobby, it was quite trendy, although now it can be seen as a ‘nerdy’ subculture. Through my collection I am trying to get the sport back to its once popular reputation; it is about subverting preconceptions. I took the hobby and turned it on its head.
By integrating waterproof fabrics with wool, I took away the purpose of the waterproofing. I want to make people question the purpose and appearance of my garments, in the same way as they should their conceptions of trainspotting.
You showcased at GFW 2015, how else will you show your collection?
After the Graduate Fashion Week 2015 show, I’m going to show my work at Somerset House as part of London Emerging Designers. I’m excited about this!
Do you have any fashion-related future plans?
At the moment I hope to complete a postgraduate degree before I move on to a job in the industry. I hadn’t worked a lot with knitwear before this year and it was nice to explore a new medium. I became immersed in it and now associate my practice with knitwear. It is what I want to work with in the future.
Check Pippa Harries portfolio. You can contact Pippa on twitter @misspipharries.