Meet New Label VERNER (Formerly TV)
We speak with the designer.
Now-deceased label TV was one of the most exciting things happening in Australia back in 2007 when it was established (along with the release of Bag Raiders' breakout EP Fun Punch. We all listened to it. Don't lie). After building a solid international fan base and even doing a capsule collection for Topshop, in 2011 TV sadly disappeared into a cloud of purple smoke and was no more. Now one of the labels' founding designers, Ingrid Verner, is back with a new project: VERNER.
For Resort 2013 she mixes sportswear, evening wear and outer(space)wear to create a collection which makes us want to scream, "I'M ALIVE!" Hand-dyed marbled silks are mixed with hand-drawn prints, with the hero piece being the 'Pakis From Outer Space' kaftan (in the first slide above) which features a portrait painted by Leon Bowers of late Melbourne-born performance artist Leigh Bowery.
Already stocked in Melbourne's Pet Shop Girls, VERNER has its sights set on capturing the hearts of the overseas market (can't you see this going nuts in Tokyo?), and there is no doubt that Ingrid's latest outing will be met with the same success as TV.
Ingrid Kesa: Hi! I'm excited about your new label because I was a big fan of TV. Why did you decide to re-launch under a new title?
Ingrid Verner: Well, TV is no longer in operation. I am now working solo, so really VERNER is the V in TV.
All of the marble-esque prints are bloody brilliant. Do you remember making marbled paper as a kid?
Yes! The idea behind the marbling came from the area I live at the moment — Brunswick, in Melbourne. The area is filled with loads of Italian, Lebanese and Greek influences in contemporary architecture.
Any plans to show at Fashion Week?
No. I have been part of Australian Fashion week in the past and found aspects unrewarding. I once saw that a takeaway chicken company sponsored a show and I thought that was hilarious! I am set on expanding into Paris, Tokyo, Korea and some parts of Europe and possibly the USA.
So, this is a resort collection... Can you tell us about your dream resort? What elements would it have? I'm thinking something along the lines of a poolside bar and palm trees...
I love Northern NSW. It really is one of the most beautiful parts of the world. Perhaps a simple shack on the water somewhere with open space and solitude. This collection was more about where I am living at the moment, though. Less poolside and more culture clash: Afro hair braiding shops meets Franco Cozzo Italian furniture. My dream resort would be wearing grey marle trakkie shorts in Monte Carlo as I take sneaky iPhone pics of Karl Lagerfeld in full black get-up and a sweaty fingerless glove.
To me, there's a bit of a Balenciaga vibe to the collection. What were some of your influences?
My influences from a print and philosophical sense were Leigh Bowery as an Australian icon, as well as tapa textiles from the Pacific Islands and the Ballets Russes. I was also obsessed with the $2 dollar shops filled with Chinese goodies as well as Sydney Road in Melbourne. I don't look at the shows, as there is too much fashion, so I am not sure what Balenciaga is up to. I did make a costume sculpture piece for a film directed by John Ibrahim (from Grey Aviary) which will exhibit shortly. It nods to Cristobal Balenciaga himself, and is called It's A Dog's Life; his closing salute to his atelier in Paris.
Last up... Now that the weather's warmer, what's your ultimate summer song?
The first ten seconds of 'Great Southern Land'.