Kenzi Laird graduate collection gives relevance to today’s society and the contrasting ideas within African nomadic tribes and the difference of that with the first world waste problems. The stand out difference within the two societies and how that correlates to the economy to give a difference in human instincts and nature. The effect of climate change and urbanisation within these countries and its relevance to fashion. With her love of the arts, another major influence was inspired by Picasso. In 1907 she declared a ‘time for change’ within the artisanal scene with new ideas on form, style and technique as it was brought on form the summer of ’06 that seen the rise of Protocubism – Picasso’s influence from African imagery through her art. With Picasso influencing a large proportion of the art scene she also compelled to inform the rest of society. Like Picasso, with the riding of new beliefs and the fascination with African imagery, Kenzi wanted to combine these two things together throughout the collection to tell a story with each piece. He wanted to create not only fashion garments but art pieces with hand-crafted skill shown in each piece - Kenzi Laird wanted to delves into innovated ideas about how we can upcycle things in unique ways and incorporate ways to educate about problems out with the fashion industry.
Her design process began by draping paper print-outs of Picasso paintings on the half scale mannequin. Kenzi knew she wanted to incorporate the initial inspirations through to the final designs so she used the respected pieces as a start to get the creativity flowing. Keeping all her samples from when she began crocheting – Kenzi used these to then layer and experiment with the contrasting textures. Her collection explores how over 100 years later on after 1907 our attitudes have shifted to be more open minded but we are still embedded in traditional outlooks of selfishness, especially regarding the most current conception of climate change. As emerging designer she finds it imperative to be as creative as possible through the process of making a sketch become a reality, exploring any possible ways to be as sustainable as she possibly can.
The final looks for the collection has major influences from creative art pieces which brings ideas of the variety of outerwear, the strong shoulders are to act as a frame to the outfit withholding the art that sits within. Using 100% recycled cotton for her crochet and 100% wool, Kenzi tried to be as sustainable as possible. She also experimented with aluminium cans found on the ground to then melt them down to remake into buttons and jewellery for the collection - hence her ideas of exhibiting unusual and unique ways we can upcycle. The collection together portrays the motto ‘to turn something from trash – to beauty’.