How were you feeling after your show?
Happy, relived and knackered. After the finale you always feel emotional. Things haven't calmed down yet I've just got back from Paris for sales which was hectic, now I’m going to Ireland then straight to NYC at the end of the week for The London Showrooms New York which is a fantastic initiative which give London-based designers the opportunity to meet the US press.
Can you sum up the show experience?
I am very pleased and happy with how the AW12 collection has been received especially as it was my first solo show on-schedule. The best part is seeing the show come together as my complete vision for AW12. Least enjoyable is all the stress and sleepless nights of getting to that final point.
(Simone Rocha: AW12)
What’s it like to be hailed as the hottest new designer to come out of London fashion week this season? And, why do you think you have that accolade?
God I don't think I can say that but It's amazing, i am just extremely grateful for the incredible support I have received.
Would you say that you have defined the Simone Rocha aesthetic now, or is it always a work in progress?
I feel my past collections have been progressing and developing to this point and now the Simone Rocha girl knows who she is.
How would you describe that aesthetic?
A continuation of the tension between masculine tailoring with a modern twist of fabrications including lace and sheer tulle to create something feminine.
Looking forward to next season, do you think you will be tempted to create something completely different?
I think as a label develops it still need to maintain the signature. I think it will evolve and the collections are developing and evolving all the time, but I believe my girl is content with who is she now and is not ready to change into something completely different yet.
What ideas are you playing with at this early stage?
I’m just getting started with shoe development and fabrications. Then will consider the colour palette; throughout my collections I keep it simple with off white, black and nudes with flashes of colour; for SS12 I highlighted the collection with hot pink and green, for AW12 moss green. I unfortunately only have had a few days in the studio so I'm just getting started, I'll start researching again soon, looking at books, going to galleries.
How do you think you will manage to maintain the momentum design wise and inspiration wise?
I hope to keep doing what I do, stay true to my aesthetic and hope that the collections continue to be received as well as they have been so far.
Where do you get your inspiration from?
I am inspired by everything from art, photography, books through to friends and family. I'm inspired by artists like Francis Bacon, Sean Scully and Perry Ogden, I'm also inspired by Ireland, I draw a lot of inspiration from the work of Louise Bourgeois; exploring the tension of masculinity and femininity which is emphasised through (for SS12) fabrications of silk, rubber and plastics, stretch cotton, tulle and antique embroidery. For the SS12 accessories I trapped vintage French broidery and panelled lace in transparent plastic for collars and bags.
How key has your father John Rocha been in your career choice and your creativity?
Having a family in the industry has definitely influenced me; I was lucky enough to grow up surrounded by photographers, artists and musicians. I studied fine art in Ireland before deciding to specialise in fashion completing the MA at Central Saint Martins. I always helped at my Dad’s show backstage dressing. The first time I didn’t help was my LFW SS11 debut with Fashion East it was also my Dad’s 25th anniversary showing at LFW.
What's your favourite piece you have designed to date?
I always look at the collections as a whole, however if I had to choose from the current collection I would say I really like this lace T-Shirt:
I think its really wearable and yet sums up the SS12 aesthetic…but you know it changes all the time.
When are you most content in your work?
When a collection is finished, but then again I find it hard to be 100% content. I look back on collections and can always see things that could be different or explored in another way, its hard to put things to rest!
What can we expect from the Simone Rocha label over the next three to five years?
I’d like to continue to explore accessories; shoes, bags and detachable collars and perhaps work on another collaboration as I enjoyed working with Topshop last year on a six piece capsule collection. It’s a great opportunity and fun to see strangers walking around in your designers; seeing how their personal style is integrated with my designers is a really special experience.
Did you always know this is where you would be career wise?
I have always been creative, so was sure I would be an artist or designer. I feel very lucky to be able to do what I do and grateful people appreciate my designs and want to wear them.
For more on Simone Rocha pick-up a copy of this month's ELLE