Corrie Nielsen Interview
The name Corrie Nielsen is now echoing around the fashion world as a name for exquisite talent. Rising to display astounding technique and vision.
We even referred to her as the next Alexander McQueen when reporting on her Autumn Winter 2012 show last season
The extraordinary talent and creativity that Nielsen produces is on a level like no other. It is very rare you can acheive both outstanding technique and jaw dropping visions, but Nielsen manages it in spades.
I sat down with Corrie at her studio in Somerset House to talk about botany, modelling and the industry just a week before her Spring 2013 collection launches.
Starting with the question everyone is dying to know, what can we expect from your Spring Summer 13 collection?
Corrie: This season I collaborated with the Royal Botanical Kew gardens. The inspiration comes from the shape and colour of flowers and plants. Looking at it in a more scientific and structural way. I was looking at the shape and inner structure of the plants. The idea that everything starts with a seed and then grows its own individual way.
An artist I was inspired by Makoto Murayama created a blueprint for a flower and thats where the 3D element comes in. The collection is also collaborating with Emma Yeo an incredible headwear designer. She has created these fabulous, inspirational headpieces using netting with wire to create 3D abstract shapes.
From being part of digital fashion week in Singapore, to designing the very british ‘fashion for the brave’ dress, what was your favourite project of 2012?
Corrie: I don’t have one. Each place has it’s individual character, Singapore only started 40 years ago, even the structure of the buildings was really different. Scotland has its own traditional character with its own heritage that grows independently. I don’t have a favourite project of this year, I’ve enjoyed all of them.
British Vogue recently released some of your modeling work for Vivienne Westwood and others, how did you transverse from modelling to your obvious talent in design?
Corrie: I was sewing when I was 11 years old. My Mother said “Your going to learn to sew” and I just didn’t want to, but I eventually ended up starting at some point. But that’s it, our family was largely artistic, always doing crafts, I suppose it was in the blood.
I was doing both really, I started modeling when I was 18, I didn’t really take it seriously, it’s something I wanted to do but knew there was a short longevity to it. Models come and go.
I was making clothes for the drag queens but decided to concentrate on the modeling for the time being. This eventually left with me going back to school to London College of Fashion first and then onto Central Saint Martins which totally redirected my energy
Known for the amount of research and meaning you put behind a collection, do you feel fashion is losing this artistic approach in replacement for a more trivial aesthetic based approach?
Corrie: Most definitely. In this day and age we are living in, creativity has been stripped from what fashion really is. Some of the greatest designers of the planet set the example for style and then moved on. It’s almost like a dream, an ideology, an illusion that is dying out.
I’m trying to bring back what style is, people get caught up in sell, sell, sell, it’s so fast, throw away fashion.
Everything has become so money orientated and with that everything is dying.
Delving into Stylenoir’s femme fatale dark style remit. If you designed something for “The Stylenoir woman” what would it look like?
Corrie: Everyone has this idea of ‘futuristic gothic strength’, but I would want it to be soft and delicate. A Gothic love story, a renaissance aesthetic. I think you have to throw love into it, softening the image up.
I’m driven by the whole Dracula concept. I love the mythology behind Transylvania. The 1992 Dracula film with Gary Oldman appealed to me greatly. The energy based around witchery and tarot, the iniquitous mystery, but combined with soft romance is something that really intrigues me.
Look at Thierry Mugler, I loved him, very shaped. His vision is so strong, which is the same with Jean Paul Gaultier who is respected for this great masculine and feminine signature.
If you think about it carefully it is beautiful even though it’s dark.
Interview by: James Joseph
Thumbnail image by: NAT URAZMETOVA