Best Independent Labels – Emma J Shipley


During fashion week I came across the work briefly of Emma J Shipley, it was a quick glance, but it was stuck in my mind, I knew it had to be featured. Then as if I needed a sign, a friend called and told me about this designer she had come across called Emma J Shipley and I HAD to feature her. In the 3 and a half years I’ve been writing Fashionworked she has never done that, so I knew that it wasn’t just me that had fallen in love. She’d seen the Disney part of the collection, I had been looking at other items.


A few weeks later I went to see the collection first hand and meet this most talented of designers. The one thing I can say is that Emma is fantastic, due to commitments elsewhere I could only spend a short time looking at the garments and speaking with her, but her enthusiasm and passion for what she does really shines through. With all designers that I’ve come across and love, they have all shared this characteristic. They don’t make clothes they make wearable art.


Each print isn’t just that, it is a drawing or canvas that wouldn’t look out of place on the walls of any of our galleries in London, not just a scarf or a top, each design is crafted to be so much more. For instance the tiger designs brig to mid the work of Gauguin ad his travels portfolios. Each encompasses her style not just as a cutter and seamstress, but as someone to whom the pencils and paper the prints are created on have as much relevance to the creative process. Create the image, and from that create the clothing, A balance of creativity and wearablity that so many have tried and few have achieved.


I love print, from floral via pattern to bold, and each of these designs either knowingly or unwittingly touches on the great moments in print from some of the great houses, Missoni and Versace come to mind in their earlier power days, but make no mistake this is a designer who is fully bringing you a sack full of originality. Each one of these designs could only be uniquely from Emma.


As for the fabrics, they are all you could hope for from garments of this nature, soft, with a beautiful weave so delicate they shimmered and moved in tune with the breeze coming through the showroom door. Floating and light, they are perfect for summer. They remain substantial while having no weight, and particularly with the coming summer that will be perfect for the scarves.

Emma J Shipley

We here at FW Towers have built a site dedicated to bringing you both the best established independent designers, and also the freshest most exciting talents out there, this is one designer we see making the move from emerging talent into British fashions established pantheon of greats very quickly.

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About Ross Pollard

Since starting writing on my 31st birthday in 2011 I have held a number of positions at magazines and websites as well as regularly producing articles for numerous publications alongside contributing to TV & radio shows as a freelance fashion journalist including Hoxton Radio & Fashion One TV. Alongside writing, I have worked in other industries helping to design & grow digital platforms, develop businesses and support operations practices. This experience has proved invaluable in building an understanding of how businesses work, and the landscape in which retail, B2B commerce and other commercial operations develop. Knowledge of commercial interests has helped shape my fashion industry insights beyond critiquing of garments

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