In the second part of our series on new Irish designers, this week we meet LSAD student and budding fashion designer Jack Roche, winner of the Future Makers Student of the Year Award. His Cypriot roots are blended with his Irish heritage to create a breath-taking bridge between cultures. The collection is a pastiche of materials and colours that provoke a nostalgia for both countries’ heritage. We spoke to him about fabrics, the fashion industry and his future plans.
How would you describe your style?
I would like to think of my style as being simple. I don’t like to complicate things more than they need to be. Even though my winning design is very textural, it is still quite relaxed.
What does winning a Future Makers award mean to you?
Winning a Future Maker award is such a great honour and to receive the Future Maker Student of the Year feels so surreal. The prize money will be put towards my studies and my final year graduate collection. I cannot thank Future Makers and DCCoI enough for their recognition and support.
Where do you see yourself in 20 years?
I want to gain a lot more experience and knowledge before I even think about setting up my own brand. By then I would love to have worked in the American and Asian fashion industries and maybe even complete an MA in fashion design. I would hope to come back and settle in Ireland, I would miss it too much.
What’s your favourite material to work with?
“I like working with natural fabrics like cottons, linens and wools. Fabrics that have a traditional Irish feel to them also appeal to me. Although I am not calling myself an eco designer, it is nice to work with the resources we have.
What is your design ethos?
When it comes to designing a garment, I like to produce something that is unique. I usually get inspiration from my surroundings. I want my designs to create both a story and atmosphere. I have gained a lot of knowledge from course leader Anne Melinn, especially when it comes to the market and customer I am aiming at.
Jack is currently interning with contemporary menswear designer Bobby Abley and minimalist women’s wear designer Charlie May and has exhibited his SS16 collection at the LSAD Gallery, Limerick Milk Market, and at Kerry Fashion Week. The collection is an expression of youth and growing into and out of the school uniform, albeit a rarified version. Jack has also earned himself a place in the Dublin Fashion Week finals, housed in Brown Thomas from September 5th-11th.
Photos courtesy of Jack Roche