FLORILEGIUM – SPRING/SUMMER 2013
Ever drawn to the past, Corrie Nielsen again looks to a Medieval Latin word to summate Spring/Summer 2013. Florilegium literally means the gathering of flowers, but refers to a collective of writing. For the new season, Corrie writes a floral story that has spanned centuries, through sculpted forms and elaborate tailoring. Observances from London’s Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, are at the centre of her work, taking one of the world’s most esteemed collections of fauna and even glass house architecture and reinterpreting it in a way that only Corrie can conceive.
Metallic silk is shaped around the entire body as a giant all-encompassing peony rose, while the Victorian Palm House of Kew is flipped inside out with folds of leaves wrapping around a transparent glass-like bodice. Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution is played out in Corrie’s avant-garde dip-dyed wedding dress – one of the many showpieces for the season. Large sculpted petals in a gradient of grey are ribboned in at the waist and followed by trailing swathes of finely layered ivory silk. Deconstructing the flower to engineered precision, Corrie has also studied botanical blueprints, conceived by Makoto Muryama. The intricate complexities of petals, sepals, stamen and anthers are recreated in luxurious fabrics and delicate leather for both subtle and exaggerated elements of interest.
The red carpet dresses take the Corrie Nielsen label to a new level, cementing her as a visionary of London Fashion Week. Not ignoring the commercial factor, Corrie has designed an array of highly wearable dresses and separates to complement the editorial showstoppers. The signature tie-neck appears on select blouses and dresses, whilst Corrie’s classic twist-cut trousers are reworked in lightweight fabrics with new detailing including sleek tuxedo style panelling and nipped in ankles. Appealing to the height of summer, Corrie has also designed a pair of easy wide legged short trousers in a faint green check, paired with one of her famous tailored cap-sleeve jackets.
Fascinated by form and design from a young age as the daughter of a prominent American sculptor, London-based Corrie Nielsen obtained a First Class BA Honours degree in Fashion Design Womenswear from Central Saint Martins. She launched her eponymous label in 2010 after she was chosen as the winner of Fashion Fringe by John Galliano. Her studio is based in the vaults of London’s historic Somerset House.
Lauded in the press throughout the globe, Corrie Nielsen has been featured in top print, digital and televised media throughout the Americas, East Asia and Europe. She regularly dresses some of the world’s most renowned women including Florence Welch, Kelly Rowland, Jasmine Guinness and Jade Parfitt. Corrie is consistently described as a modern couturier and is constantly compared to the most praised designers of our time.
Notable 2012 achievements include being commissioned by Hilary Alexander to create the 2012 dress for Fashion for the Brave, being accepted onto the Centre for Fashion Enterprise Pioneer Programme, representing the UK at Singapore’s annual Passion Ball, being shortlisted for the 2012 Scottish Fashion Awards, designing a dress for Barbie for a project with Sir Sean Connery, and creating an ArtBox for the 2012 BT initiative.
Photography by Christopher Dadey