Combining a passion for sustainability with her unique cultural concept, Anastasia Brodrick’s label Aurora Mayari uses techniques like Boro and Sashiko stitching. “The traditional patchwork evolved out of necessity. When a kimono or futon started to run thin in an area, a small piece of scrap fabric would be sewn over the area with the Japanese running stitch,” explained the emerging designer. The garments were traditionally worn by commoners, fishermen and farmers but were reimagined by Brodrick with a high fashion edge.
Brodrick engaged with sustainable practices by utilising recycled materials and repurposing them into contemporary evening wear with these unique Japanese techniques. “My goal was to create contemporary investment pieces that will be reminiscent of the original kimono,” she said. For Brodrick, sustainability is not only about preserving the environment but retaining our cultural heritage. “We should be continuing to pass on traditional knowledge and techniques, so future generations have the opportunity to experience and learn original methods developed hundreds of years ago.”
Sixty percent of this collection was made from recycled materials. “I really wanted to have a 100 percent recycled collection, but as you go through the design process your concept evolves, and you just have to kind of roll with the punches and adapt.”
Brodrick’s method of design is also a homage to the past, as she finds herself steering away from modern technology in favour of a more hands-on approach to the creative process. “I prefer to drape on the mannequin for the majority of my designs, I usually find that it is faster and easier for me to design in 3D instead of drawing,” she revealed. The most important skills she has learnt are her technical sewing and pattern making techniques. “To me, I think it’s all well and good if you have great design ideas, but if you cannot execute your idea into a physical garment, you are left at a standstill.” Brodrick is excited to translate her passion for fashion into a business which combines her love for sustainability with great style and functionality. “I think there is a real opportunity for me in the future to create contemporary fashionable and sustainable clothing for women of all sizes.”