I was commissioned to do posters for the new offers at a local bar.
Recently, Katie Jones came back to our university to talk about her recent success and starting up her own business with her friend and business partner. She started her brand from an ethical standpoint of using reclaimed and upcycled yarn, but she says that the fashion always come first and if sustainability come in to it then it’s a bonus. Katie Jones herself is a very colourful character, I really admire her style, and she has a very forward way of thinking when it comes to sustainable fashion, she said that it doesn’t have to be boring or beige, there are many innovative tricks and tips you can use, like no waste pattern cutting, to give your garments an “in” to the hemp-adorned, dreadlocked sustainable fashion world. Katie said she became sustainable by accident, by using end of cone yarns and getting her base pieces (aran knit) from charity shops and eBay.
K2TOG was chosen to be part of the Emerging Talent Section of Estethica, showing at Somerset House, after Katie pitched the idea to the creator of the organisation, however, Katie had a lot of work to do as she was confirmed only 3 weeks before London Fashion Week. Estethica was founded by the British Fashion Council in 2006 to specifically showcase sustainable designers work and has since become the forefront of British sustainable fashion, Ada Zanditon is a previous designer of theirs. The organisation is mainly for start up designers, to get them out there and establish a name for themselves before going it alone. This brilliant opportunity catapulted Katie’s business from a small start up into an official business where she got serious orders from people wanting to buy, there was lots of interest from people in Italy and Japan as they love the bespoke, non mass produced element of her clothing.
Going from being a student, then a freelance designer to then a fully fledged CEO was a big leap, and Katie said her personal challenge was to work out costing and mathematics, luckily her housemate was able to help, but she found it difficult not to undercut herself and was even told to increase her prices by her mentor at Estethica on the second day of the showcase. You can always set an RRP for stockists, you always have to remember to pay yourself a wage and you normally mark up your clothes by around 1.5-2.2% and then shops will add an extra 2.8% on top of that. These things are very important and you need to be very vigilant when you are first starting up, because most designers only last 4 seasons, after that the freebies and opportunities run out and you’re left to fend for yourself. Katie still works as a freelancer, most recently creating patterns for Knitting Monthly, a popular knitting magazine. She said that she has 2 very different and separate audiences, one week her work is in Knitting Monthly and then the next she appears in subversive fashion magazines like Dazed and Confused!
I always find Katie Jones’ visits inspiring and she makes me want to go out and do things creatively. The success she has had is purely down to hard work and talent and it makes you want to work hard to get where she is in the industry.
Picture sources: http://katiejonesknitwear.tumblr.com/post/77058738459/k2tog-aw14-aran-crop-mini
A day in the life of Derek Crookes goes something like this:
Wake up super early and grab your phone to start checking through social media for news stories that have cropped up while you were sleeping, such as Twitter, Facebook etc. Then you make your way into the office ready for a meeting at 8:10 with about 20 other journalists, to decide what news will be covered and also how to relay it to the C2DE demographic of 16-24 year olds in a clear and uncomplicated way in the small slot that Newsbeat has. In-house journalists are even provided with newspapers when they come in to verify the stories they’ve seen all morning on the web. They can’t cover every single news story that come up, and so they try to focus on the ones that they think are the most relevant to the demographic. You need to verify your stories with two notable sources once you come up with your news agenda, which is a group of stories that you will discuss in different ways throughout the day. Once this has been established the editor will send journalists out to cover the stories, this can all be done via a microphone and uploaded to an iPhone, ready to be relayed back to base. There is a “gate” everyday, which is a deadline in which you have to have your story ready or else it doesn’t get used, at Newsbeat this is normally about 12:30/12:45. Journalists are under alot of pressure to be as knowledgeable as they can be in a short amount of time about subjects they have to cover. After the stress of the work day you travel home while checking your social media for new stories. That is definitely the difference between a job and a career, a job you can go home and switch off from it but you never stop thinking about your career.
The programme is very scripted, as is all BBC news, the newsreaders and editors have the job of making the news sound like it’s not by using colloquial language and soundbites. It’s a very competitive industry, as is any creative industry I suppose, and the hours are long, normally 8am-6pm shifts but you often work outside of that when you are starting off. Derek Crookes studied at City University in Islington for 4 years and in his sandwich year he took a 1 year unpaid internship for Saturday Sports News, which launched him into the industry. In 1999 he started reading news at LBC on weekends doing shifts no one else wanted to do on his local radio station, then gradually he got promoted to weekday newsreader and then editor, when he decided what news went on air. He then went freelance and worked for Sky News before he finally got involved with Newsbeat,and now he is in charge of the website. It is very important to get all the key information in the first paragraphs, as people have a habit of reading for 30 seconds and then they continue scrolling. He said he has gained alot of connections in this business and that it is important for journalists to help each other out whenever they can.
All in all the visit was interesting, but not really very useful to me as I am not interested in journalism or how it works and what goes into producing the news.