2011 Recap

Though 2011 hasn’t been a particularly great year for me, I feel the last day of the year calls for a recap to say goodbye and welcome the new year. It will also give me something to compare new years achievements to.

So this year I have:

  • Launched my own label.
  • Moved on from just latex to having my own jewellery line and starting production of some fabric garments.
  • Attended various trade shows and fairs, including clothes show live.
  • Had modelling work published in a book, 4 magazines and two calenders.
  • Had design work published in 6 magazines.
  • Walked in 8 fashion shows for various designers.
  • Had my designs feature in 3 fashion shows.
  • Explored my CAD design skills to the point where I feel comfortable producing work for others.

Inspirational images 2011

I wanted to add more to this post and might get the chance to at a later date.


Unicorn inspiration

I’m currently in the process of planning a shoot with Jennifer Byron, featuring a unicorn mask by Tom Banwell. After seeing his black rabbit mask around so much over the past year or so I was quite excited at the idea of a unicorn one.

Tom Banwell unicorn mask, complete with leather eyelashes

I’m not totally sure how much masks suit me so I’m going to make extra effort with the rest of the outfit to make sure it looks good.

When I started analysing the options I realised I didn’t know that much about unicorns and their origin so I decided to read up on them a bit. There is plenty of information online but one of the most interesting things I found was on wikipedia. Though unicorns were fist mentioned by the ancient Greeks, they are not found in Greek mythology but rather in accounts of natural history. Greek writers of natural history were convinced of the reality of the unicorn, which they located in India, a distant and fabulous realm for them. The earliest description is from Ctesias who described them as wild asses, fleet of foot, having a horn, a cubit and a half in length and colored white, red and black. Being from Greece myself I was quite suprised not to have heard this before but then again it isn’t really the kind of this they would bother teaching in school.

unicorn moodboard

I put together a vague board of unicorn-related inspiration but was actually surprised by how little I found that was to my taste. I think this shoot will be a good opportunity to create some unicorn-related imagery and accessories that aren’t overly childish or classic fantasy inspired.

I would like to keep the look with the mask quite close to the original depiction of the unicorn as possible so its going to be all white but I also like the idea of the black unicorn so I may do a second, darker look that I can play around with more.

My favourite items from the moodboard are the origami unicorns, I’d love to be able to make some of these for the shoot (especially a life-size one) but I gave it a try this afternoon and actually found it quite hard. If any origami experts happen to read this, please get in touch!

Bird’s yard update

I recently did a couple of shifts at my Leeds stockist, Bird’s yard. Having not worked in a shop for a good few years it did feel a bit strange when I first got there. I couldn’t remember what you’re supposed to do with the till, had the feeling I wasn’t supposed to touch any of the items in the shop and that I was supposed to be going work when I was standing behind the desk waiting for customers.

When I had readjusted to shopassistantness I found that its actually really good being able to talk to your customers face to face, help them find what they’re looking for and suggest items that might suit them. This is something online businesses really miss out on and in my experience stalls/shows don’t really make up for it as shoppers are a lot less relaxed at such events and, in most cases, actually seem pretty scared that you might try and sell them something.

I also took this opportunity to slightly rearrange my products which now appear to be on mannequins dotted around the shop and a display cabinet as well as the Eustratia booth.

So if you haven’t visited the wonderful Aladdin’s cave that is Bird’s yard I suggest you do so soon. They stock a variety of interesting new designers to suit all tastes and my talented friend Sophie Adamson has also recently joined, if you like dead things check out her work.

Deer Series

Hope everyone had a good Christmas and is looking forward to the new year (hopefully with some exciting parties)!

We recently shot the last part of my accessories project with Jennifer Byron photography and the outcome of one of the sets were these (quite festive) deer characters.

All the accessory shoot sets were planned out at the same time (September) so it was quite a lucky coincidence that the deer ones happened to fall in december. This gave me an excuse to include some of the new winter accessories that weren’t originally going to be part of the shoot.

Cold deer

I had this glitter tears idea ages ago and tried it for a different shoot but it didn’t really work so I’m glad it came out well in these.

Blood deer

I actually used a glitter glue pen for the tears on this one, it was the best looking red glitter I could find but was quite stingy so I wouldn’t recommend wearing it for too long.

Dark deer

I have a few dark images that are kind of similar so I tried to pic something different for this one with a softer and more animated pose.

Notice the Aesthetic contradiction logo necklace? I’m planning a little giveaway for these soon. All other accessories (excluding the body jewellery :p) can be purchased at www.eustratia.co.uk!

Antlers are made to order, please email enquiries@eustratia.co.uk for details.

Best wishes for the new year,

“Chimera” collection, Winter 2011

I recently launched the new Eustratia latex/chainmail fusion collection, Chimera. The collection was produced in collaboration with chainmail and metal jewellery designer, Richard Ayres. The name was chosen to reflect the combination of two, very different materials.

The theme of the collection revolves around medieval military and knights while still adhering to aspects of current silhouettes and trends.

“Chimera” Lookbook


Images and retouching: David Richardson

models: Victoria B, Biomechanina and Elle Beth

MUA: Mercedes and Sarah Jane Ellis

We also did a bit of a concept shoot before we got kicked off our chosen location!

Items from this collection are now available to purchase on the online store!

All chainmail components were hand made down to each individual link by my partner, Richard Ayres. He is also happy to take on orders for custom and bespoke items so feel free to email enquiries@eustratia.co.uk with any ideas or questions. His collection of metal jewellery and accessories will also be added to the online store very soon.

It was a bit of a rush to get the whole collection made and shot before I left for clothes show live and I ended up waiting to launch till I got back and was able to add items to the shop. I’m quite happy with the way everything turned out given the circumstance, special thanks to David for all his help and support!

Close up shots of the accessories coming soon, along with some more perspex.

For updates, please check the facebook page.