Thursday, 24 September 2015

Bump and beyond, part two

In May I wrote a post on maternity style in which I talked about the difficulties of retaining a sense of self during pregnancy, trying to remain stylish and not succumbing to sack-like clothing (unless a shapeless sack is just your thing, in which case, carry on). I thought about my own pregnancy last year and realised that - almost subconsciously - I had started to make more maternity-friendly shapes. Some of the pieces from my Spring/Summer 2015 'Hangar' collection morphed brilliantly into maternity wear and so, too, do a few from our 'Archive' collection for Autumn/Winter 2015.

The Alice cocoon cardigan, Bertie wrap cardigan and Beatrix striped t-shirt dress have all been expertly modelled below by my beautiful friend Mimi (who was around 8 months pregnant at the time). But just to demonstrate how brilliantly versatile our cocoon cardigans are, I've also included a shot of me wearing the Alice and using it to provide a little coverage as I breastfeed my daughter.

Wednesday, 27 May 2015

The Pacific Skirt

Another gem that slipped out at the end of the 80s was Pacific State by 808 State. One of the old school classics, it appears on just about every nostalgic classic house compilation out there. It is the sound of the summer, so was an obvious choice while I was designing the S/S 2015 collection.

Slip into the fine-gauge cotton blend Pacific skirt with bare feet for a day by the pool or on the beach, then whack on a pair of colour-pop heels for a balmy night out.

Saturday, 16 May 2015

The Good Life top

I reckon I've wrecked a few pairs of heels over the years dancing to this one. Today's post is about Good Life and the sweater it named, following on from our last post on the Spring/Summer 2015 collection and the tracks that inspired it.

At the tail end of the 80s Inner City released Good Life and it was such a powerful, seminal track that it sounds as good today as it did then and, in my experience, never fails to get everyone on their feet the minute it comes on. It was so good, it was re-recorded and released again ten years later in 1999. Our Good Life sweater is a fine-gauge knit and a staple for your wardrobe, perfect for our unpredictable British summers, it'll see you through to autumn. We've included the brilliantly low budget video to Good Life below. Sums up the '80s in a nutshell.

Thursday, 14 May 2015

Bump and beyond

Pregnancy is a notoriously difficult period, style-wise. Nine long months for some and yet a mere snippet of a woman's life, overall. Still, your body is changing throughout and it can be tough to retain a sense of self and stay true to your style without resorting to tent-like structures for those who prefer to conceal, or permanent stretch jersey for the embrace-the-bump types.

Like many mums I know, I had an aversion to actual maternity wear, so with a bit of creativity I managed to get through my pregnancy without it - knotted shirts and tube skirts in larger sizes saw me through brilliantly. Even better is to be able to continue to wear and enjoy the things you've bought after the baby is born, too. 

It's inevitable that my collections are going to be inspired by whatever is happening in my life at the time. While it wasn't a conscious decision design-wise, there were a few pieces that morphed perfectly into maternity wear and I wore these constantly throughout the last few months before my daughter was born. As I mentioned in the post about the Halcyon cardigan earlier this week, this was my wardrobe saviour and is subsequently my favourite piece from the Spring/Summer 2015 collection. The Harmony dress was another failsafe. My lovely friend Mimi is due in five weeks' time and very kindly agreed to demonstrate just how maternity friendly these pieces can be:

Tuesday, 12 May 2015

The Halcyon Cardigan

Orbital's Halcyon and On and On was released in 1993 and I loved it so much it appeared on pretty much every mix tape I made over the next few years. I still can't get enough of it - it's a particularly good one to play once the temperature starts to rise, even better if I'm driving around the countryside in my ancient BMW with all the windows down.

As mentioned in a previous post about the Spring/Summer 2015 collection, the colour palette and general vibe for these pieces was inspired by some of my favourite house tracks from the '90s. As the weather is finally improving I thought I'd talk you through some of those tracks and the pieces that have been named after them. The wrap cardigan (pictured above) that shares its name is one of my favourite pieces from this collection. I wore it to death at the end of my pregnancy last September and for that reason alone, it holds a special place in my heart. It is the perfect spring throw-on. 

Wednesday, 6 May 2015

New coverage: Grazia

We knew journalist Polly Vernon was an avid Amy Hall fan, but this week she has cemented that status by featuring our knits in her 'Ups and Downs' barometer in Grazia (in 'Up', obviously....). The pieces featured are available to buy online with a selection from the Spring/Summer collection currently in stock at Graceland, the beautiful Hertfordshire boutique owned by fashion commentator Grace Woodward.

Sunday, 22 March 2015

Recent coverage: Source magazine

Last summer I spoke to new local London magazine 'Source' for their A/W 2014 launch issue about knitwear and the challenges of running a business (challenge being the operative word, given that I was six months pregnant at the time and now have a five month old baby!). The magazine came out at the end of last year and is available to pick up free in local cafes, independent shops and bars around north and east London.

Interview: Helene Dancer, photography: Tara Darby