Meet Young Emerging Designer: Chelsea Thatcher
Katey Bulner | On 18, Sep 2016
In a field where spring has announced its arrival, you run free with your hair loose and your bare feet touching the earth. You feel your dress blowing in the wind, and you smile and look down at the bohemian gown your body is enwrapped in. This is the essence of Chelsea-May.
In a city of fashion and youth there sits a young woman named Chelsea Thatcher, an emerging Brisbane designer who is cutting into the world of fashion, one gown at a time. This week, The Creative Issue talk about the creative journey, processes and inspirations behind building your own fashion label straight from the ground up. Let us introduce you to Chelsea-May.
TCI: Tell us about your creative journey to becoming a fashion designer.
Chelsea Thatcher: After finishing high school I went on to receive my ‘Advanced Diploma of Applied Fashion Design’. Since then I have been working from home on my own small formal wear label – selling my graduate collection ‘Moments of Clarity’ as well as custom pieces to friends, and customers. ‘Chelsea-May’ is still very organic, each dress is sewn especially by me in my little design room!
TCI: What was the inspiration behind Chelsea-May?
CT: ‘Chelsea-May’ was created with the intention of providing girls with the chance to feel liberated, inspired and spiritually aware. Formal events are things that we don’t forget – we remember what we were celebrating, the people with us and of course the way we felt and the way we looked. I saw this as an opportunity to capture the beauty and excitement of one night, and combine it with the chance of revelation or a new understanding of beauty.
I am greatly inspired by movement, not only for clothing but also in life. It’s something I can’t help by notice and am intrigued by. However; my main inspiration is the freedom of faith and intimate connection with God and the universe.
TCI: What are some challenges and achievements you have experienced within the fashion industry?
CT: My main challenge at this stage is that I’m very raw – having only recently graduated. Sometimes my creativity exceeds my physical capability’s. I still have a lot of learning to do and developing of techniques, but I’m really loving embracing these first steps of a new adventure. I am so excited and humbled to be in a place of growing, absorbing, learning and creating….it’s a wonderful place to be.
TCI: Can you describe your creative process and space when you are designing a new garment?
My creative process is all over the place and I often get ideas in the middle of the night or just in the most random moments. Mostly when designing a dress it starts with a few days of intentional thought and prayer about what the final product should feel like. Then I sketch. I draw (scribble) until I have a rough idea of what I’m making, and then I look for fabric. Sometimes I’ll be inspired by some other fabrics and change my design completely, and other times it ends up being exactly like what I had imagined.
TCI: What does the future hold for Chelsea-May?
CT: The future for ‘Chelsea-May’ is a very unrecognisable place. There are so many possibilities and different directions that are pulling me. But for right now I’m just going to stay in the moment, focus on my designs and keep trying to make my customers happy. At these early stages, I am very open to all opportunities/collaborations that present themselves. I am eager to learn and grow and soak in anything that comes my way.
TCI: Where can people see and buy these beautiful garments?
Images Credit: Chelsea-May, Ivy & Pine Photography