Founded by designer Geoffrey F Finch in 2006 after he fled rural Queensland, Australia for London, Antipodium focuses on luxurious silks and cute detailing which put equal emphasis on classic style and fashion-forward trends.

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Hermione De Paula

Hermione de Paula graduated from Central St Martins and earned her stripes with experience at prestigious houses including Christian Dior Couture, Alexander McQueen, John Galliano and Giles. In 2008 De Paula launched her ready-to-wear collection to much acclaim, soon growing a cult following for the clever contrast between the delicacy of her feminine florals and her dynamic edginess.

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Huishan Zhang

A Central Saint Martin’s graduate of Chinese descent, Huishan Zhang fuses Chinese tradition with Western influences and modernity. He launched his label shortly after graduating and honing his skills in the Christian Dior couture atelier. Drawing inspiration from contemporary art and culture, his collections offer a fresh vision of femininity with intricate detailing.

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What is the inspiration behind your AW13 collection?

The inspiration for the current collection comes from the Dutch artist Mondrian and Sui Jianguo’s Moa Suit series. The collection blends Chinese and Western cultures and is a fusion of modernity and tradition. There are clean lines and absolute precision but also real feminine strength.

Do you have any tips on the best way to style your collection?

When it comes to the styling, the idea of the collection is that clothes can be day or evening wear. These clothes can easily be worn in a way that makes you comfortable and confident in any situation, at any time of day. At the show the models wore low heels which were glamourous and cool, but perfect for real women’s lives.

What inspired you to become a fashion designer?

Ever since I left China for New Zealand, I wanted to do something different from other people. Fashion is a great way for me to express myself and to demonstrate to others my artistic point of view and, most importantly, I enjoy the process of making garments.

Why do you choose to work and live in London rather than the other fashion capitals?

I was trained and have worked in London for almost 7 years now. Even though I am a foreigner, I feel that I have grown accustomed to living in the UK. I feel that I have the freedom to develop what I want - a lot of my inspiration comes from my experience at [the art and design school] Central Saint Martins, its library and the museums I visit.

What is your favourite piece from the my-wardrobe edit?

My favorite piece would be the Pink Crystal Black Lace and White Silk Dress, exclusive to It is elegant, yet the Swarovski crystal adds a bit of glamour into it.

Why do you think London is such a hotbed of design talent?

Because the city is so good at nurturing and combining different cultures. Creative people from all over the world come to London. It has a real wealth of inspiration, in galleries and museums but also just running through the city itself.


Having studied menswear at London College of Fashion, J.W. Anderson launched his eponymous label in 2008, with 2010 finally seeing the creation of a capsule collection for women. Through his origins in menswear, Anderson continues to explore the relationship between boy and girl and blurs the lines of gender in each of his collections.

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Lucas Nasimento

A recent graduate of the London College of Fashion, Lucas Nascimento plays with the geometric and textural aspects of knitwear; his designs come in clean structural forms with a futuristic edge. His signature style focuses on chic cocoon-shaped dresses and separates.

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What is your design background?

As a child, precious time was spent with my mother being taught how to knit. I came to London to study knitwear at the London College of Fashion and I think it has been a natural progression from there.

What is your favourite piece from the current collection?

The chenille off-the-shoulder dress is one of my favourites; the fibres in this fabrication catch the light so beautifully. In the show it was layered with a turtle neck but it looks great on its own, with bare shoulders showing.

What are your top styling tips for your collection?

Layering! Mixing different textures and transparencies.

Why do you think London is such a hotbed of design talent?

London is such a diverse city with endless possibilities for inspiration. It is a great place to discover yourself and develop as a designer.

Marious Schwab

Classically trained in tailoring and the technical construction of garments in Austria, Marios Schwab has established a firm fashion base in London. Known for his intricate attention to detail, Schwab combines both cutting edge trends and artistic craftsmanship in his work, making him a star of red-carpet elegance and wearable work-wear in equal measure.

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Meadham Kirchoff

Both Cental Saint Martins graduates and winners of the emerging talent award in ready-to-wear at the British Fashion Awards in 2010, Meadham Kirchoff produce collections that regularly push conceptual boundaries, while remaining eminently wearable and in tune with the fashion forward, urban woman. Think feminine designs that are executed in an old-fashioned manner.

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Mother of Pearl

Founded by Maia Norman, the quintessentially British brand Mother of Pearl produces delectable print pieces with a sportswear edge. Amy Powney, Head Designer since 2010, has introduced a streamlined aesthetic while still retaining the USP of the brand: using celebrated artists’ work to feature as prints within the collection. Collaborations have included collections with SHOWstudio, New York artist Francesco Simeti and for Autumn/Winter 2013 the acclaimed taxidermist Polly Morgan.

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Ostwald Helgason

Ostwald Helgason is headed up by the London-based design duo Susanne Ostwald and Ingvar Helgason, who give modern shapes a fresh dimension through textured and tactile fabrication. The designers draw inspiration from fine art and new technology creating a dynamic combination of natural and hi-tech pieces

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Originally focused on bringing directional design to the shirt, palmer//harding designs offer pure forms without distraction. The NEWGEN-sponsored Central St. Martin’s design duo offers clean voluminous blouses with long trains and simple minimalistic separates.

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What is your inspiration for the current collection?

AW13 was inspired by contrast and a desire to find the balance between our two differing aesthetic preferences. With this concept we explored the idea of textural and emotional opposites, fluid/structure, light/dark, dirty/clean.

What is so special about the shirt?

The shirt encompasses so many cultural and historical aspects that it really allows us to tap into a vast array of references. It is also a garment that has been neglected in terms of design exploration, and this blank canvas allows us to explore the ways in which this versatile and timeless piece can be developed.

What are your top styling tips for the collection?

Wear your shirt for any occasion, don't just keep it in its formal category or wait for a special occasion. This liberal wear will instil a confidence and attitude into your shirt. Like leather, a quality shirt develops more character with age.

Why do you think London is such a hot bed of design talent?

I think the multicultural aspect and bad weather has a lot to do with it. The great mix of ethnicity, religion and cultural backgrounds really provide a wealth of inspiration. The less than desirable weather provides a backdrop that drives the mind towards escapism, and it is in these two mixes, that creativity flourishes.

Peridot London

Established in 2009 by Rachel Wilson, Peridot London has a strong tailoring aesthetic and a cool, contemporary feel. Valuing the concept of less is more, the brand keep their collection capsule sized, designing and producing in their Baker street showroom in London, creating a style that's highly crafted and carefully considered.

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Preen’s creators Justin Thornton and Thea Bregazzi met when they were just 18. Fast forward to 1996 and the edgy, design obsessed duo had opened a tiny atelier boutique on London’s Portobello Road and were counting Kate Moss and Chloë Sevigny amongst their cool clientele. The rest is history but unsurprisingly, thanks to their unique styling and rock and roll aesthetic, Preen continues to thrive. Love the unexpected sartorial twists and lust after traditional cuts with a rock and roll reworking.

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Richard Nicoll

Another Central Saint Martins superstar, Richard Nicoll instantly stood out from the pack with his understated sophistication and innovative approach to fashion. ANDAM awards and ‘Best Young Designer’ honours soon followed his graduation in 2002 and he’s gone from strength to strength since.

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Studio Nicholson

Launched in 2010 by creative director and former menswear designer Nick Wakeman, Studio Nicholson brings together the classic cuts of men’s style to the working woman’s wardrobe. Structured but feminine, assertive but elegant, it is the perfect solution for a confident approach to modern dressing.

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