Ones To Watch For 2018: Fashion Designer George Murray

It's a joy to see so many unique designers being supported in a small market-place like ours. Here at IMAGE, we take pride in championing Irish design and the people at the forefront of its evolution and growth. These are the women and men who stand out from the crowd, have us craning our necks just to catch a glimpse, and who change our perceptions.

Here, we meet designer and embroiderer George Murray. Having graduated from NCAD in 2015 with a degree in Textile Design, he specialises in hand embroidery and digital printing, and his designs and artwork are as intricate as they are labour intensive. He splits his time between designing and producing seasonal womenswear collections (available exclusively at OmDiva Boutique) while working in Cloth. Here, we take 5 to talk being carefree, Henri Matisse, staying in Ireland versus leaving, and the future of his brand.

George Murray designs

I have always loved embroidery. I feel like there is something very special about using such an ancient technique and applying it to modern trends. When I was studying I fell in love with the medium of hand embroidery and the emotion you can get across in such a personal craft. I just ran with it! I always draw first and allow my drawings to develop into different embroidery designs, it just seems like a natural progression to me.

The DNA of my brand would have to be a feeling of carefreeness and fun. When I design, it has to be fun and I must be enjoying it to make it successful. I don't plan: my designs come about as I'm drawing, but I'm hugely influenced by my surroundings.

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The recurring face on my embroideries is actually based on the early notebook drawings of Henri Matisse: I just love how childlike and carefree the drawings are. I used to draw photo-realistic images, but I've since learnt to let my emotions do the drawing and to let go of myself.

Fashion designers in Dublin are gaining more national and international attention, but a lot of graduates are still going abroad for better opportunities. I think it's a massive shame but it's understandable why they feel the need to relocate. For me, Ireland is my home and I plan to stay. Dublin has helped me to develop a hard-working ethic and has given me the drive I need to succeed.

I have a very busy year ahead of me in 2018, which I am really excited about. There will be more collections but also a few collaborations In the mix. I'm dabbling in the world of interiors too, and am really enjoying it – I hope to do more of it in 2018. It's a gift to be pursuing a career you love; I can't wait to see where it takes me.

I am obsessed with queer makeup artists at the moment. I live on Instagram and follow -  probably - hundreds of makeup artists. I'm obsessed with the structure of the face and it's amazing to see what some artists like Fabijan, Salvjiia and isshehungry are doing. Their work is so ethereal and thought-provoking; I love to see people doing different things and stepping outside of that generic Instagram box.

Follow George at @geomur and shop his collections exclusively at OmDiva .

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