When it comes to feminine, luxurious and sexy designs, Alice McCall along with her namesake label is in a league of her own. With her latest SS16 collection, Back to Light, dynamic, innovative silhouettes are celebrated, with stunning lacework running through. We spoke with Alice about the collection, her creative process, and finding a balance between inspiration and cohesion.
The collection is informed by the interplay of light and fabrication – what comes first in your creative process, the concept or materials?
“I suppose in a way the concepts come first, as these come about when I am looking for inspiration. But in terms of the creative process, it usually begins when I find a fantastic piece of fabric or an amazing silhouette. I work with draping a lot – seeing the way fabrics fall, pinning them to mannequins and really letting the fabric take its own shape [shapes the creative process]”.
This collection shows a sexier progression of much-loved silhouettes and the introduction to future favourite cuts – how important is it to keep a common thread running through each collection?
“Continuity and cohesion is key to maintaining a strong brand identity. I always say the hardest part of the design process is continually being inspired from so many different avenues, then channelling this inspiration to create one cohesive collection. I think it is so important to stay true to the brand while still developing and growing with the customer – it is all about finding the right balance”.
From your installation at this year’s MBFWA to the look book for Back to Light, each element of this feels very considered – do these concepts begin while designing, or do they evolve as the collection takes shape?
“In many ways the concepts begin when I am in the inspiration processes of designing. I love vintage clothes and furniture and fabrications so the vintage undertones in my designs come about quite organically. At our MBFWA instillation, I wanted to give media and buyers insight into the alice McCALL world. I loved creating a ‘stage’ to showcase my inspirations and concepts and how these influenced my designs”.
There is a very clear vision of the Alice McCALL girl – how do you see her?
“The alice McCALL is fun and likes to stand out from the crowd”.
Is there a piece in this collection that you hold closest to your heart? If so, why is this?
“It’s no secret I love lace, so the lace pieces in this collection have a soft spot in my heart. The Octavia Shirt is probably one of my favourites. I love bell sleeves and the way the Chantilly lace falls. It is flattering and feminine – and being sheer it is completely sexy”.
The georgeous pieces from Back to Light are available to pre-order now at alicemccall.com