Life in the 21st century just keeps getting faster. From internet connections to intercity travel, from fast food to instant fashion on the high street, we are obsessed with speed. And hand in hand with speed, goes novelty. The demand for the new is insatiable. As has been often stated, this is becoming increasingly unsustainable, particularly with the vast increase in wealth and demand in countries from China to Brazil. There are signs however, that people are considering alternatives to the mass consumerism we have all grown so used to. In the food industry for example, organisations such as the Slow Food Movement, are promoting the idea of locally sourced produce, and seasonal eating, ie: not eating strawberries in November, when they will either be far from local, or grown intensively in artificial conditions. Meanwhile in the fashion world, vintage clothing, a very old form of recycling, has become a huge trend, and is the very antithesis of cheap disposable fashion so prevalent on the high street. Made to measure is another area that one might have assumed, with the exception of Savile Row, had died out generations past. Although it may sound like an extravagant option, a garment made this way can last for years, is likely to become a permanent part of a wardrobe, and is probably much better made than off-the-peg equivalents.
|Catherine working on an outfit for the grandmother of a bride.|
|Containers of fabric cuttings. Once they have no further use, scraps are sent to schools, and even to recycling facilities where they are converted into compost.|
|The inspiration board includes Catherine's parents' and grandparents' wedding photos.|
|Robyn Bramzell being laced into her corset.|
As a member of the Chamber of Commerce, and a big supporter of the various local campaigns, Catherine is another Crystal Palace enthusiast, whose life and creativity is woven into the very fabric of the Triangle.
4 Cooper's Yard