The Clothes Show Live in association with Suzuki takes place each year at the Birmingham NEC arena and is a fun-packed five days of discounted shopping from all of our favourite brands, emerging designers, and vintage sellers. It’s also filled with live interviews with leading designers, fashion industry insiders, and celebrities. This year also saw the introduction of a catwalk show by Britain and Ireland’s Next Top Model, and a fashion theatre performance hosted by one of Britain’s leading designers, Henry Holland (right), along with celebrity stylist, Grace Woodward. TFS went along to soak up the fashionable atmosphere.
One of the most exciting things we watched whilst at the Clothes Show Live, had to be a live interview with fashion designer Bora Asku who talked about his career and dished out a few tips for aspiring designers. The Turkish born London-based designer explained that fashion always seemed to be in his blood, as he can even recall drawing sketches as a child just for the fun of it, so in essence he eventually turned what was his hobby into his full-time career. He also believes that it’s this passion which has fuelled such a successful career and that everybody needs to put love into what they do.
It’s Not all Catwalks and Celebs
Asku explained that from the outside the fashion industry seems very glamorous, and yes, of course, he thoroughly enjoys the exciting parts such as his catwalk shows at Fashion Week, or seeing celebrities wearing his clothes, but what people don’t realise is the sheer amount of work that goes on behind the scenes, and that as a designer, you never really stop working. He also wanted to change people’s perceptions that working within fashion is exactly like The Devil Wears Prada, as he explained that he has many nice friends within the industry who even act like a kind of support network whenever he needs a quick break from all of that intensive designing.
Asku said that his biggest career highlights so far were seeing his name on the official schedule at LFW, and that he still generally gets butterflies every time he sees his work in any kind of fashion magazine, as it’s a big affirmation that he’s doing well. We couldn’t agree with him more when he said that the biggest prize is doing what you love.
Asku's Tips for Aspiring Designers
- Do your research, and determine whether fashion is really the right industry for you.
- Do as many internships as you can, as what you learn at school is totally different from the working reality.
- Always keep a scrapbook to inspire your designs. Asku’s designs are inspired by a multitude of mediums, from places he visits to old T-shirts he finds.
- Make sure you have good business sense, as designing clothes is one thing, but selling them is a totally different story.
Images: Anthony Stanley/WENN, IMAXtree