Young, brave and energetic French born haute couture womenswear designer Aurélie Fontan,
has quickly caught the attention from the leading London fashion industry by taking home numerous awards including: Fashion Scout’s One’s To Watch Award, the Dame Vivienne Westwood Ethical and Sustainable Award, M&S Best Womenswear Award and the Catwalk Textiles Award.
"LFW was very emotional, I think I cried a little bit at the end!"
From showcasing at Graduate Fashion Week to London Fashion Week, Aurélie Fontan,
has established herself as a sustainable fashion designer with a focus on bio-design and circular economy. For her striking LFW debut collection, ‘Tensegrity’, she engineered a lot of her fabric in a science lab, growing yeasts and bacterias to transform into eye-catching haute couture garments. With the negative impacts of fast fashion becoming ever more apparent, Aurélie implemented various design strategies to produce more sustainable and ethical fashion garments.
"Primarily what attracted me to London was the craziness"
is at the forefront of sustainable fashion, rethinking what couture means. Aurélie’s love of fashion stems from her creative childhood playing with different creative mediums, expressing herself through art, drawing and design. Embedding both her own Parisian heritage alongside inspiration from the traditional Dutch Couture House, Iris van Herpen; Aurélie ensures a balance is kept between innovation and traditional craftsmanship, conjuring the phrase ‘technocraft’. This concept is a conglomerate of both technology and traditional craftsmanship, embodying Aurélie’s unique way of working.
"I really wanted to offer different alternatives to fast fashion"
In addition to Aurélie’s modern and creative approach, the young designer is also challenging the entire concept of fast fashion. With thousands of garments ending up in landfills across the globe, Aurélie has acknowledged the damaging impact of the fashion industry and is determined to make a change. After looking at recycling and up-cycling, she then took it one step further - growing her own fabrics.
Taking inspiration from the renowned Senior Research Fellow at Central Saint Martins, Suzanne Lee and her pioneering research ‘BioCouture’; Aurélie transformed her home grown fabric into a statement couture pieces with a dazzling copper finish. To say Aurélie pioneer in sustainable fashion is an understatement. From growing her own fabric to completely transforming the fashion cycle, Aurélie is certainly ahead of her time.
"Not a lot of attention is given to designers who are more avant-garde of forward thinking"
Following Aurélie’s focus sustainability and circular production, she is set to launch a range of accessories under our Fashion Crossover London e-commerce store, retaining her avant-garde modular style into wearable accessories. Her products are set to change our current consumer cycle, with customers her able to send back products for them to be transformed into an entirely new item. For her collection ‘Tensegrity’, Aurélie ensured every aspect of the manufacturing though to the consumption is as sustainable as possible, following her family ethos of being environmentally aware and resourceful.
Made To Order Titan Tote Bag
Made to Order Titan Cross Body Bag
Made To Order Titan Bucket Bag
Aurélie has also begun a partnership with Woman’s Trust, a London based charity which is fundamental in providing therapy and support to female victims of abuse by donating a portion of her sales profits.
"Unlike a lot of other e-commerce platforms, with Fashion Crossover London I can develop my brand at the pace I want with no financial pressure"
We had the honour of meeting with Aurélie to discuss her sustainable approach to fashion, along with her hopes and plans for the future. To watch the video, please see below.
Words by Gaby Smith
Video by Lupe Baeyens