Renewing, repairing and preserving has always been a part of textiles and clothing. To find new perspectives and ways of caring for your clothes, join us for an evening with sustainable fashion pioneer Orsola de Castro, visible mending and darning expert Hikaru Noguchi and textile conservator Zenzie Tinker in our Caring For Your Clothes online talk.
Orsola de Castro is a pioneer and internationally recognised opinion leader in sustainable fashion. In 1997 she founded From Somewhere, a label designing clothes made entirely from pre-consumer waste: disregarded materials such as surplus and production cut-offs. The label combined sustainable thinking with fashion-forward design, bringing quality and craftsmanship to ‘exquisite rubbish’. From Somewhere (closed in 2014) sold to the some of the world’s best boutiques and its design collaborations include Jigsaw, Robe di Kappa, Tesco, Speedo and Topshop Reclaim To Wear, a series of bestselling upcycling collections which run from 2012 to 2015.
Image: Orsola de Castro
In 2013, with Carry Somers, she founded Fashion Revolution, marking the tragedy in Dhaka, Bangladesh on 24 April 2013 when the Rana Plaza factory collapsed, killing and injuring thousands of workers. Raising public awareness of the continuing social and environmental catastrophes in our global fashion supply chains, Fashion Revolution has become a global campaign with participation in over 60 countries around the world.
Orsola’s has recently published Loved Clothes Last, a new book exploring why we need to become emotionally reattached to our clothes, thinking of each garment as a long-term commitment as opposed to a short-term fling.
Image: Hikaru Noguchi
Hikaru Noguchi has been a leading knitted fabric designer since the early 1990s, her work being influenced by traditional knit patterns and craft techniques. She works with small knit workshops where attention to detail and quality are still valued, seeking the sophisticated and quirky, achieved through unusual juxtapositions of colour and texture. In recent years she has added traditional darning and mending techniques to her work, aiming to promote sustainability in textiles and garments.
Zenzie Tinker’s conservation journey began in the early 1980’s with a degree in the History of Design, specialising in textiles and dress followed by a five year apprenticeship training in textile and tapestry conservation at Ksynia Marko’s London conservation studio. Zenzie then worked in museums for over a decade, first as Costume Conservator at the Museum of London and then as a Senior Textile Conservator at the Victoria & Albert Museum where she consolidated her costume expertise.
In 2002, Zenzie left the V&A to establish her freelance business, Zenzie Tinker Conservation in Brighton. Fast forward two decades and Zenzie now leads an experienced team of textile and paper conservators treating a wide range of textiles out of a suite of rooms in a large, conservation studio. As well as standout historic dress projects including conserving the Ellen Terry theatrical dress collection at Smallhythe (National Trust), the multi-layered clothing of the extraordinary Royal Funeral Effigies at Westminster Abbey and caring for the Legal Dress Collection at the Royal Courts of Justice, the team have also worked on more contemporary costume including David Bowie stage outfits, almost 200 Stephen Jones hats and many spectacular couture gowns.
Caring For Your Clothes, Online Talk with Orsola de Castro, Hikaru Noguchi and Zenzie Tinker will take place on Wednesday 20 October 2021. Book tickets here.