Retro Reflections is a collection inspired by the late 80's early 90's were fashion was wild, crazy , colourful and expressive. No one cared about how they dressed it was the style. It was loud and also very urban at the same time. I love the neon vibes it brings from such cultures like Miami vice to the Vegas strip. I can't place it but I love it because people were bold, brave and beautiful and just generally authentic.
During the 1980's hair accessories was all the rage especially scrunchies. Make up was another way to express yourself along with brightly coloured clothes to make a statement along side big wild hair; the more wild and big the hair was the more cool you were. Shoulder pads were also worn to show empowerment. Business like fashion designed by Italian designer Elsa Schiaprellis in 1931 fall/winter collection. This was a movement called "Power dressing". They wanted to show they were capable in society and wanted to look more masculine
James Laver was one of the first to study fashion as science during the 1930's. His most well known contribution was Lavers law which puttied the life cycle of fashion trends by stating that trends doesn't "in" again until 50 years after its time more recently studies have found that laver law is still relevant today but more condescend. Some experts believe fashion trends get killed off die to boredom as it needs to disappear before it can be rediscovered.
This inspired me to look around and do some mindful photography. I had always been interested in the neon lights ever since my photography project during my Masters degree (which you can find here)
However, I wanted to emulate this and noticed there was a lot of neon signs which gave an interesting vibe and also shows me how things change yet stay the same and how fashion circulates. I do find that its only when someone pays attentions to these things it becomes more noticed and therefore more beautiful to when you initially ;aid your eyes on it. Sometimes you need to stop looking to really see and take it in.
I compiled a variety of images that appeared both retro and vintage to empahsise how modern days emulates trends back then and ho trends back then are becoming trends now. Using my iPhone I used something that is used in this futurist era to juxtapose how people really want to live ie. have this vintage retro feel of photos with neon lights and dust on the lence. But not using the type of camera that was used back then which I imagine is just a normal film camera. However, I can see how efficient using your phone and using filters to emulate this type of camera affect seems more convent to todays quick living and demanding society, but I do feel it misses the essence and expericne of a real film camera. I do find it hilarious that its actually bad to have dust in he lense and pretty annoying to some photographers who want a clear capture so its funny to have the option of choosing to have dust in the sense. Ill make sue to bring my talcum powder next time I'm doing a shoot.
Below is a photo book that I have compiled full of my photos that I took to convey how I feel about modern day vs 80's fashion/style. This is to show how trends circulate s it repeats in modern day but also vintage cars have also become a cool collectable to have. I find that as the viewer you interpret how you want others to see. I just so happen to find these things very retro and vintage I had to emphasis my perspective.
After doing this it inspired me to make a new jewellery collection I wanted to hit out with this new theme of the 80's and how timeless it really can be and the feel good vibe it contains. But at the same time still connect it with my theme of mental health as it still creates a relevant vibe here through the connection of memory and nostalgia. I was first looking at trends of the 90's with things like Betty spaghetti, video cartridges and lipgloss... lots of it!
After looking at trends to get inspiration no shapes were coming only the nostalgia and the vibe I wanted to create. Neon was something that always intrested me firm wise and colour wise and general vibe wise. I then looked at gaming cuture during the 80's and 90's and the VHS like game systems. Arcades were also something that blew up during this late 80's 90's era and it definalty was bright and vibrant! Just what I needed and something with shape could help me get inspired to create a form.... I hoped.
From the bright intensity of the neon lights to the colour of blue and pink which really stood out to me especially pink as this was THE colour association maybe cause of the Russian Cold War? Whatever the reason pink was all over this era and I love it. I also saw that Memphis pattern was a huge deal during the 80s again bright colours and patterns. Im not sure why but it was every were from clothes, to furniture to wallpaper to jewellery to even tv shows and sets like Save by the Bell. neon and Memphis was practically iconic in this be it true fashion or not... if anything they made it bigger.
Memphis patterns are these geometric shapes that look like they should'nt go together on a page but somehow does and here is so many variations of these it baffles me. I typically don't like geometric patterns but after looking intensively at a couple of patterns I don't know what it is but the colours just draw me in and making it ok for my brain to be like "yeah it works" even tho some of the shapes are a mix of flat and 3d shapes.
This Memphis design inspired a whole bunch of earrings I made from polymer clay. Earrings is something that interests me and its also a place were people feel nervouse and most likely touch their earrings. Earring are in my opinion pretty artistic because they allow you to be as expressive and strange. The stranger the earing the more appealing. Similar to broaches but for some reason earrings are more popular. Therefore I wanted to create a series of earrings and since the memphis designs are so individual and you can capture any type of shape and call it an earring. Like literally pick a shape and stick it to a bit of wire and VIOLA you have an earring. But obviously you put your own spin on it so sticking to the theme of hanging mental health through scent and touch was essential but at the same time encouraging people to be "BOLD BRAVE and BEAUTIFUL"with this type of edgy style and also experimenting with other materials such as the clay just to see how it goes because in design you gotta not be a one trick pony.