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Rachel Riley Q&A - Best girls' designer fashion brand 2014 - HIGHLY COMMENDED

We meet the designer behind the 2014 Junior Design Award Highly Commended entry

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Rachel Riley, Managing Director

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

Clothing for children and babies is so specific, to suit their body shapes, and to make them feel at ease and able to ‘discover the world’ that children’s clothing should be more about comfort and style, rather than fashion.  I love to see what the new trends are, and nod to anything that can be incorporated into children’s clothing, but the fact that this should be able to be handed down, means that childrens clothing should be stylish and timeless and not so necessarily ‘trendy’ or ‘fashionable’.

Do you have a muse?

All children are beautiful, in their spontaneity, in their interest in the world, in their individuality, I love to watch them, and see their reactions. I have loved dressing my own children, and love to see our customers wearing our clothes.

Why do you think parents are increasingly more interested in what their children are wearing?

I think that parents have always been interested in what their children wear. Our society is very ‘immediate’ now, in that we can see what other children wear very quickly, but we see our own children every day, so it is a daily pleasure to see our own children looking comfortable and stylish.

Why did you enter the Junior Design Awards?

The Junior Design Awards present the best of all things relating to childhood, so we wanted to make sure that we were in the running to receive an award for our (already award-winning) children and baby fashion! We wanted to present ourselves alongside the ‘best-of-the-best’ in all things relating to children and babies!

What do you predict for the future of children’s fashion?

One of the delightful things about seeing the Royal Baby wearing traditional clothes, is it showed the world that it is adorable (and fashionable) for babies to look like babies, and not be dressed in a scaled-down version of adult clothes.  I am sure that we will see more innovations in fabrics, which I will follow, although the simplest cottons are often my favourites! What I will be excited to see next year is with the birth of the second Royal Baby whether will there be any ‘matching outfits’! Many of our customers love matching, and my favourite way to design is to have the boy/girl equivalent. In fact, finding fabrics that I could put on both my sons and my daughter when they were little (I was convinced that if they were matching and looking lovely when we went out, people wouldn’t notice when they misbehaved, or at least would be more forgiving!) was once of my first design challenges, and the Dalmatian print from AW14 and the map print from SS15 are great examples of these!


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