Discovery and appreciation for beauty is a core part of what we believe in, and an ethos echoed by British born designer, Eirinn Hayhow. It is easy to be hyper critical of everything, and take our lives for granted, but hey come on.. relax and live a little! Everyone has room for a little more fun in their wardrobes. Eirinn's collections are here to remind us we can find beauty in all aspects of life (and perhaps focus on the positives not negatives)... Flowers grow in dustbins! Exactly, that's the name of her collection, dreamed up by Eirinn herself, who's inspiration for beautiful clothes came early on from her mother, who had an extraordinary taste for fashion and an eye for beautiful things. Eirinn's range combines extensive research of fabrics and production methods with her strong personal taste and personality. Inspired by natural elements, lightness and childlike play with materials, each piece is crafted with a distinctive look, incorporating raw edges and chunky oversized silhouettes. Salvaging old fabrics is key, as well as, experimenting with new textures and innovative materials.
We had the chance to sit down with Eirinn and explore her journey to becoming one of the most exciting emerging designers in the UK today.
Q: How did you get started in the fashion industry?
I have had an interest in fashion from a young age. As a little girl, I used to put my feet through the bottoms of carrier bags- pulling up the handles like straps... I made my first pair of dungarees. I was not allowed to wear high-heel shoes, so I used to papier-mache together tissue boxes and toilet roll tubes.. painting them pink to create my own shoes. In my tissue box shoes and plastic bag dungarees, I used to strut down my garden like a catwalk.
I did my BA in art but fashion was always hugely important to me. My love of fashion came from my mother who loved nice things - especially clothes. She was both elegant and androgynous and this inspires the fluidity of my garments. I moved to Berlin after I graduated from my art degree and spent a few years there. - I used to make huge televisions and sculptural installations with short films, revealing everyday ordinary, like faces in chewing gum on concrete streets, and the reflection of rainbow lights on walls in the extraordinary manner they deserved. This use of collage, colour and salvaging from our environment is present in my garments today. I always see the beauty in everything and this is a huge part of my brand philosophy. Flowers always grow in dustbins. In Berlin, I started to upcycle and make my own garments from materials and clothing found in charity shops and second-hand stores. I would screen-print my artwork on each garment and sell unique pieces at flea markets and design markets. Sustainability and ethics are a huge part of my process, and I am someone who feels so connected with nature. I knew that with my fashion, I could work towards helping to save the planet.
Q: Where do you draw inspiration from?
I am constantly drawing inspiration from my surroundings, from nature and from my personal experience in both my waking life and my dream world, as I journey through life making sense of the world that we live in. These experiences inspire colours, textures, shapes and patterns of each collection. Currently, I am reading Braiding Sweetgrass and Dark Ecology as I start designing my next collection.
Q: What can somebody find you doing on a Sunday night?
A typical Sunday night for me is pretty chilled, I like to do a light yin yoga and drink a selection of yogi teas. I am also really into making hot reishi mushroom drinks with oat milk. If you haven't tried it .. you should! These are amazing for relaxing and stimulate some awesome dreams ;). As its October me and my boyfriend are doing Sunday night horror movies and watching some cult classics. Yesterday we watched Hausu (1977) A Japanese psychedelic horror-comedy about a house that eats people.
Q: Tell us a bit more about how you started your brand and what challenges did you encounter along the way?
There are always challenges supporting yourself financially while you are trying to grow a business... Also, when you have your own business, its not like a 9 -5 job, you are constantly working... so its difficult to get the down time. It's important that you make room for this in your daily routine. Yoga is hugely important to me. Also to always remain positive, and not get disheartened if you don't get the feature that you want, or the sale that you want. Life is a journey and you have to enjoy the ride.
Q: What is the essence of the brand in few words?
Don't be afraid to bloom in the dark!
Flowers Grow in Dustbins
We are the flowers and the trees
ITS PUNK TO LOVE
Q: What is your favourite part of your job?
I have two favourite parts to my creating. The first is the early stages - the idea stages, where I am constantly stimulated with ideas and information. That is when I get to be super creative, and experimental. Making natural dyes, testing fabrics, learning about new sustainable innovation... It just makes me so excited!
Then the final stage, when my collection is complete and I get to bring it all together. I love people and making connections, and having experiences is the most important thing. So when the garments are made and I have an idea for the final shooting and the film, I get to work with such amazing people! I am so honoured to have such a lovely team of people that work with me on every shoot, and I get to meet so many wonderful new people on the way. Its amazing!
Q: Who do you design for? Who wears your brand?
I don't think so much about designing for a particular customer. Although I am very much aware of who I would like to wear my work. With each collection I try to create a movement, a feeling, an atmosphere that I hope people can connect to.
Q: Can you share more about the production aspects?
In production, I only use waste materials. For this particular collection I partnered with the Pilgrims Hospice end of life charity, taking the materials that they can not sell in-store. I then hand-dye the materials or print them with my own motifs. Where possible, I only use natural fibers as I am very aware of the chemicals in polyesters and un-natural fabrics, and how they affect the body. For my SS collection which will be launched shortly, I have used no chemical dyes in production and created my own dyes from foraging food and plant waste. Going forward this will be how I make my collections.
Q: What is your vision for the future of the brand?
My vision for the future of my brand, is to continue to find innovative solutions to waste materials in my production. Keep working towards saving the planet, and to raise awareness of the negative impacts of certain fibres on the human body. I hope to create collections that fully nourish the wearer, as well as looking amazing. I am also working on some exciting research into how I can create my own fabrics from biomaterials.. watch this space <3
Made in UK with only the beautiful salvaged materials or innovative fabrics, translating seamless from day to night. Eirinn's collection merges trash and haute-couture, vintage and contemporary elements, to create guilt-free stand-out gender fluid garments. To learn more about Eirinn or see some behind the scenes footage, check on the video below, or shop from her full collection here.
By Verginia Stoyanova