interview by John Edinger

Ana Segurado is an award winning Portuguese fashion designer, who believes that “creativity comes from within.” She is highly eclectic, inspired by the outlook and lifestyle of artists, such as Patti Smith and Edith Piaf. Her “cruelty free” line mixes fashion and “street” for some unexpected results.

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How did you get interested in design as a creative expression?

I have always been passionate about art in all its expressions. My work always involves the application of design and aesthetics combined with emotion and creativity.

 You have described your brand as “cruelty free” exclusive clothing, combining material interactions with unexpected results.” Can you give examples of some “unexpected” results?

My brand is cruelty free, with an organic and exclusive design. This concept reflects my search for more sustainable options, based on a slow-fashion ideology as opposed to fast fashion culture. I use natural and non-natural fibers with high quality and comfort.

The experimental interaction with unexpected results refers to the textile artist India Flint, with the series of work: “Sense of Place” that inspired the prints for this collection.

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You have been inspired by several women artists: Patti Smith, Joan Didion, Yayoi Kusama, and Edith Piaf.  What is it about the style of these artists that inspires you?

It’s about confidence, self-expression and creativity that comes from within, and how this is reflected in their style. The special emphasis was in the 70’s, when the role of women in society took a turn across the world with the presence and rise of a significant number of women. 

 In your work, you say that you use shredded denim with failure frayed points and jacquard micromotifs to express the duality between street inspiration, music and arts and crafts. How do think these types of “youth culture” designs help the wearer to express confidence? 

Denim is universal, it’s in the street everyday in all shapes and forms. It’s part of everyone wardrobe essentials. It’s a well-loved material and the most manipulated with customizations, washed-and-worn finishes.

Emphasize a highly personal style. The frayed denim is a DIY statement, and also represents raw and authentic.

Denim is timeless and it’s associated to youth, brings an inherent confidence.

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You have said that creativity comes from the inside, from the rejection of external influences, and it is your belief that this instills confidence and allows for self-expression. Yet, you have also, in a sense, “borrowed” from influential artists. How do you walk the fine line between having an influence and expressing your own voice? 

 Even the most innovative and reinvent people are influenced by their surroundings and their experiences, but the results of their creations are in itself different and unique. Kusama influenced contemporaries such as Andy Warhol, however his work was unique and innovative.

When I speak about the rejection of external influence, it’s not being afraid to express themselves, the kind of acceptance that the results may have. Everything around me influences my work, but the result is always my interpretation and creation.

 One of the garments in your collection has a prominent tie-dye that you have said was inspired by textile artist, India Flint. What was it about her work that you were drawn to?

 Everything that connects nature to art inspires me. Especially when natural elements are used as a tool for an artistic purpose. This artist created dyes of fallen leaves, and earth pigments. I like the concept of experimental interactions with unexpected results.

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Did you include anything in the collection that you would like to be seen as a trademark for your brand going forward?

In my collections must always exist dresses that can be worn as coats and vice versa. Layers and textures are another constant. 

Is there anyone in particular you would like to see wearing your clothes?

I would love to see Claire Boucher (Grimes) wear any of my clothes. She’s such an amazing and innovative artist. She’s unique.

 Where can we buy your clothing?

 In Portugal you can find it in two stores in the Oporto area, you can also shop online at Not Just a Label www.notjustalabel.com, or at my online shop at www.anasegurado.com

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 follow Ana Segurado on Facebook and Instagram!

photographer: Rossana Mendes Fonseca, hair/location: Hair Identity, makeup: Patricia Rodrigues Make Up

model: Maryana Tsyutsyk @ Just Models, jewelry: NUUK, special thanks to whoa, Andreia Fonseca, and Diogo Aguiar

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