Vinnette Grant is a talented bridal and evening wear fashion designer from London who used to participate at many fashion events such as The London Fashion Week, The New York Fashion Week, The Dubai Fashion Week or The Vogue Fashion Runway. FIV Magazine had the chance to meet Vinnette Grant during Paris Fashion Week and today presents an exclusive interview with her.
Fashion designer from London – Vinnette Grant
FIV : Hi Vinnette! How are you? FIV Magazine is glad to do an interview with you. You are an incredible and talented fashion designer from London. When did you start and what is your background?
Vinnette: I was eight when I was introduced to Fashion and textiles by my Father who was a Tailor, and my Mother who was a Designer/Dreammaker.
I was surrounded by interesting fabrics, colours and clients, it was really like Aladdin’s Cave to me. My mother brought a handheld Singer machine and started teaching me, she later made up my designs. After my official Fashion training, I have fond memories of working on projects together with my Parents in their workroom. I then sought work in Harvey Nichols as a trainee buyer but was inpatient to wait for a course and accepted a position as a consultant whilst I waited. I went out to all the boutiques in Kensington and Knightsbridge, selling my samples and received orders from my Buyer at Harvey Nichols who wanted to know WHY I hadn’t offered her my designs!!!! I was later given a letter from an International Scout, Vanessa Denza asking me to discuss international orders.
In the years that followed, I had a career break and began teaching creative’s in Fashion , helping them prepare their Port Folios for College interviews amongst other Teaching positions in London. I went on to enter and win National Design Competitions using the Prize money to show my Collection at London Fashion Week in Olympia Kensington, gaining International orders .
I began getting Commissions for Bridal and Evening Wear which continued into my British Airways Cabin Crew years from other Crew members, which I intended to do for only one year , I loved the ideas of travel inspiring my designs which of course it did. I showcased my Bridal Gowns on two occasions at the National Wedding Show. Also at this time , I was commissioned by British Airways to produce a Futuristic Uniform to be shown in their Heritage show to raise money for Flying Start/Comic Relief projects for which I won an Innovation Award. The fundraising team then travelled to Cape town so visit some of Nelson Mandela’s projects. I transferred my skills to one of the experienced Mothers at a nursery school to enable other parents to repair and make garments for their children.
FIV: How would you describe your universe and your style for people who don’t know you yet?
Vinnette: My universe is surrounded by Humanitarian people with integrity, a place where people help each other with clarity and transparency , where everyone wins and develops/ grows and in turn are strong and proud. I strive to cater for these confident Women, enabling them to empower and be empowered , thus slowing each other to reach their full potential.
My Style is therefore very strong, Feminine and Fashion Forward. Even the Brand name of Unbridaled Couture means “NO Limits! Personally, I prefer to dress in strong lines which can be found in suits and coats from the 40’s and 50’s.
Favorite part of being a fashion designer
FIV: You are a successful fashion designerwho used to participate at many fashion events like The London Fashion Week, The New York Fashion Week, The Dubai Fashion Week or The Vogue Fashion Runway. What is your favourite part of being a fashion designer?
Vinnette: My favourite part of being a Designer is witnessing the development of an idea in its final stage, as a finished garment and being appreciated, either on a Catwalk or by a client.
Being a Designer also means you are never quite satisfied. There is always something which can be improved.
FIV: Why did you decide to choose fashion designing as a career? Tell us about a project which has been your greatest achievement?
Vinnette: Designing chose me, I had no say in the matter. Even after all these years, I am still obsessed by the art of Creation. My greatest influencers are my Parents who transferred their love Fashion to me and I too ..”Love to do it ” Fashion has been my Saviour so many times!!! I have a few highlights to my career one of them was when I was commissioned by the world renown London Store… SELFRIDGES , to produce an exclusive Bridal skirt for their Christmas window in Oxford street. The video of the making of “Creating a white Christmas on Selfridges 2011” can still be seen on YOU Tube and became the most popular Christmas window that year.
FIV: What is your inspiration behind your design?
Vinnette: The inspiration behind my Designs have come from my extensive travel over the years which broadened my ideas of shape and Form found in International Architecture. I absolutely love yester eras of Fashion, back to the old days when all Fashion was newly created and fresh. Somes advices for those who are getting married soon and are looking for the weeding dress of their dream.
FIV: As a fashion bridal and evening wear designer, do you have any advices for those who are getting married soon and are looking for the wedding dress of their dream?
Vinnette: I always advise my Brides to collate an ideas book or Pinterest page of all interesting shapes, neckline, sleeves etc. to bring to our first Consultation. This always bring body and Form to the final creation. I would always advise trying on different shaped Gowns whether they be Trumpet forms, Mermaid or Princess. Often Brides have firm ideas about what shapes suits them and are often surprised following different fittings. Gowns should always reflect the personality of themselves or at least how they would like to be seen and not the ideas of others which can often bring conflict. I also always advice allowing six months for the creation of their Gown and longer from the conception. I also let them know that fittings are essential nearer the time as many brides tend to lose weight through all the planning.
Trendiest wedding places in London
FIV: You probably know the trendiest places in London where we can get married. Where are the best places in London located?
Vinnette: Some of the best venues in London for Weddings in my opinion would have history and ambience such as
1. The Painted Halls in Greenwich
2. The Banqueting Halls
These two venues provide Grandeur and history however many brides prefer modern venues such as The Roof Gardens in Kensington or Hotels who offer the ceremony and reception. My future projects that I am allowed to mention, is a Fundraising event that I am organising with my Daughter Laura Campbell , to raise awareness and funds for The Stroke Association due to family connections which will be held at the Doubletree by Hilton, Riverside in June 2020.
How to become a successful fashion designer?
FIV: As a fashion teacher, what skills are necessary for a successful fashion designer?
Vinnette: As a Fashion Tutor , I look passion , commitment and a desire to learn and improve their skills, even in their own time , as I’m a firm believer in you can always improve your skill set and they show demonstrate that they are aware that Designing is not 9-5 office or school hours, ideas can come at any time of day or night, in fact, I have always kept a pen and paper by my bed in case I can’t remember ideas in the morning. If students want to learn Designing because they want overnight fame and fortune, I would advise them that this could happen but equally may not. I am old school and believe the art of Designing should consist of all aspects of designing through to Pattern cutting and production. If a student has experience in these skills, they will have a greater understanding of their creation. They should study past and current Designers, as I believe in the re-emergence of creations, making what is considered Vintage to be Current, attending as many Fashion Shows as possible Students must demonstrate perseverance and patients, also they should investigate other aspects of Fashion which could offer employment and further training in their futures for example as Fashion Buyers, Make Up Artists, and other back stage Creatives, but above all, they must never give up in this highly competitive industry.