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Milliemanu Q&A with Camilla Ridley - Best UK children's fashion brand 2014 - HIGHLY COMMENDED

We meet the designer behind the 2014 Junior Design Award highly commended entry

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What is your name and job title?

Camilla Ridley, Designer and Director at milliemanu

 What did you love to wear as a child?

The dress I remember most from my childhood was a corduroy pinafore which my mother had made. She had appliqued a little house and garden onto the front. There was so much care and attention to detail in it. I absolutely loved it. Later on I made my own clothes and experimented with fashion. I loved wearing ra-ra skirts and sparkly tops.

What’s so great about children’s fashion?

Working with children is fantastic. Kids are just so positive with so much potential and energy it’s a really optimistic area to work in. This could be a reason why everyone I’ve encountered in our industry so far is just really lovely.

Above all the best thing about children’s fashion is the potential to positively influence future generations. At milliemanu, we believe that creating beautifully made items, made to last rather than disposable fashion is key to a better, more sustainable future. We hope in our small way we help to shape a more discerning and environmentally conscious generation of consumers.

What are the highlights of your autumn winter 2014 collection?

Our new collection of classically cut overcoats made from luxuriously soft Scottish lambswool and striking tweed are real head turners. Each coat features a striking lining in a new Liberty print. Our tweed coats incorporate the latest ultra thin high performance insulation used in the most advanced skiwear. Our silk metallic dresses and metallic lace dresses make for spectacular party dresses and are bang on trend.

Our blouses feature bold floral Liberty prints in a range of autumnal shades as well as a beautiful print featuring Scottish landscape.

How important is it to keep up with changing fashion trends?

In spite of focusing on longevity and having a strongly classic look, keeping up with fashion trends is still very important at milliemanu. Fashion, trends and the media have an enormous influence on how clothes are perceived and how they can be used to define and differentiate social groups and express values. Understanding context and what’s out there is vital in evolving our offer and collections, as well as a great source of inspiration. When it comes to designing, we tend to be quite selective about the influences we incorporate, ensuring that they work harmoniously with our British style and benefit the wearer. In this sense, our collections tend to be a subtle evolutions and interpretations of what’s on the catwalk opposed to direct copies of the latest trends.


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