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LFW SS13 Interview: Auria x Margot Bowman

Hot off the press and frustratingly fresh from the student grind, Diana Auria Harris is the tantalisingly talented and much talked about newbie Esthetica exhibitor and LFW first-timer. Having only graduated from LCF in summer just gone and picking up their ‘Fashion Innovation’ accolade a month or so previous, showcasing at our fair city’s fashion frenzy was the next giant leap for Diana and stuff I can only imagine every young designer’s dreams are made of. For her summer (and debut) collection, Auria enlists the illustrious artistry talents of good friend, Margot Bowman, to curate a match made in sartorial beach party heaven.

The fourteen–piece ultra-retro swimwear set lifts silhouettes from its 80’s postmodern predecessors i.e. high leg lines and clean cut-outs and splatters modern pop graphics by way of manipulated Ancient Greek iconography all owa ‘em.

An ethical ethos underpins the sexy swimwear set, enabling maximum performance while maintaining the utmost respect for the environments in which each piece is created and worn. This girl has thought of everything. I got in there like swimwear to talk designer friendships and tripping balls.

Planet Notion: Firstly, how does it feel to lose your LFW V-plates?
Diana Auria Harris: It’s really great. I’m straight out of graduation to London Fashion Week so I’m so happy and privileged to be here.

PN: Props for that, it’s major. Can you talk me through your collection and tell me how the whole collab came to be?
DAH: Basically, it’s all made out of one hundred per cent recycled polyamide from discarded products like fishing nets and carpets, hence why I’m part of Esthetica. It’s also all made in England. I did a collaboration with my friend, Margot Bowman, so Auria is me and my swimwear brand but I commission Margot to do the prints. The whole concept of the prints is from the Greek goddess Artemis who is the goddess of hunting and animals so there is a prominent bow and arrow theme running throughout the prints.

PN: What about the colours? Where did they come from?
DAH: The colours… hmm. We just wanted to make it fun, playful and colourful so it stands out on the beach. Margot, normally with her signature style, uses a lot of bright colours but we wanted to use a lot of pastels and gradients, mixing it up with block colours. It kind of looks like someone’s on acid but it’s cool.

PN: HA, true. How important do you think it is that young designers, such as yourself, have platforms like Esthetica available to them?
DAH: I think it’s really important. Being part of Esthetica has been so great because it’s great for a designer to come out of uni and have the opportunity to do things like this. I was in the London College of Fashion graduate show and I won the ‘Fashion Innovation Award’ and I got lots of press from that but these exhibitions are really great to bring out the up and coming designers.

PN: Now you can tick LFW off on your to do list, what’s next?
DAH: I definitely want to keep doing swimwear and maybe eventually do some lingerie or maybe extend into clothing because I’ve added in some crop tops. I’d like to maybe collaborate with different artists every season. So this season is Margot Bowman, maybe next season I’ll find another really interesting illustrator or graphic designer to do my prints but we’ll see how it goes.

Words – Helen Turnbull

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