Photography / Editorial / Print


Can you tell us a little about yourself, when did you start designing, where did you learn your craft?

I graduated with distinction from The University of the Arts in London, London College of Fashion and University of Dumlupinar, Turkey in 2005.  My debut catwalk show was as a finalist in the fashion competition ‘Young Designers’ which took place in Istanbul with awards allocated by the Community of Fashion. After completing my studies I worked from January 2005, beginning just before their A/W 05-06 collection had been completed, until the A/W 06-07 collection for a show at London Fashion Week for top designers. My responsibilities ranged from design assistant and consultant to trade show assistant at London Fashion Week and assisting during all fashion week shows (dressing, supervising and so on). After working for the leading fashion houses, my passion for fashion grew, leading me into creating my own label.

When did you introduce your own label?

I introduced my first A/W 09 collection to London Fashion Week,  named, 'Silent Moon', the catwalk show was in Farringdon. These shows were followed by my S/S09 and S/S10 collections. After the first show I had my first stockists in USA, Australia, Canada and Dubai.

What kind of person do you create clothing for?

During my career I have always liked strong women who are in control of themselves and have their own style. I don’t particularly like to create clothes for women who just wear anything or follow trends. I always loved seeing my outfits on women whose style I admire.

Who is your ideal clotheshorse?

I would say Mary Kate Olsen or Elizabeth Taylor. It is because I have always loved the combination of ethnics and naturalness coupled with echoes of past romanticism. In fashion we always look back at history. We cherish and re-invent old treasures, going back to the times of Napoleon and Josephine, la belle Époque, Marie Antoinette. There is lots of romanticism and on the other hand, there are the exotic cultural expressions of Eastern countries with their beautiful jewellery and embroidery, their colourful ethnicity and graphic decorations. I think that is what I see in Mary Kate Olsen and Elizabeth Taylor.

What drew you to clothes and fashion?

Since my childhood I loved drawing and, still, my early drawings are the inspiration for my adult collections. There are many different stories from life: I remember my collection of lacework, known as “oya” (a kind of embroidery) made by my mother. I suppose that is how I have become a fashion designer; through my mom. I have always wanted to do something positive, looking to a brighter future. I go back to the memories of my childhood which have had a bearing on the brightness and optimism of my collections.  I have always loved clothing because the way we dress is a sign of who we are and how we wish to act in the world. It is vital that we get this language right. Fashion experts are saying that a more modest look is in, it is such a different feeling but it is still very sexy, pretty and feminine. It is a little covered up; it is kind of like a sexy take on a librarian.

Where do you draw your inspiration from?

I find much of my inspiration while I am on holiday in my home town, I suppose that I reveal the fashion inside me due to the place where I was born.

What is your favourite book?

“The Museum of Innocence” by Orhan Pamuk

What one item in your wardrobe could you not live without?

I love wearing second hand clothes because I believe that they all have their own story, left by their previous owners: maybe happiness, maybe sadness. During my childhood I used to wear my elder brother's clothes. There is one white jumper of his which is full of memories. It is maybe around 20 years old, I think. I couldn't live without it.

Who are your favourite designers?

I delight in contrasts. Whether that is a mix of strong and romantic femininity, print with plain, or dark with light: all agree with my design philosophy, which is highly detailed. That's why I believe that Ossie Clark was the one who was best for inspiring my own particular style.

What do you think of current fashion trends?

I do not understand what happened to individuality and originality. What's the appeal in going out and seeing that every 1 out of 2 people has the same type of shoes, skirt, dress, hair, sunglasses etc. I love dressing up but I have a unique fashion sense and although I get complimented a lot, I find that I don't even like when I see that someone is copying another one’s looks. Anyways, I just find it disturbing when I look around and feel surrounded by an army of clones all wearing the same things.

What makes you happy?

I do not know but I must be missing my childhood. I find myself spending time in my hometown and living amongst the memories that I know will make me quite happy. My friends always say that I am quite a romantic person and with that comes an appreciation of my own history and of the good things I have experienced.

You say you like to travel, would you describe yourself as a avid traveller?

I find much of my inspiration while I am on holiday, that's why I try to travel a lot; I always believe that you get much of your experience when you are travelling.  One can never learn enough in fashion because the world changes so quickly. I am very open to different cultures and add the knowledge I gain to my total fashion experience.

What is your favourite fruit? And why?

My favourite fruit is the cherry. I think this is because I have a fertile imagination and am often involved in many creative pursuits. I find, though, that expressing my feelings is not very easy. One’s home is one’s haven and I love nothing more than being surrounded by close family.

Growing up, what music and films were you obsessed with?

I have always loved black and white nostalgia in music and films. I was obsessed with “West Side Soul” by Magic Sam, The Beatles, Johnny Cash; “Sunset Boulevard” (Billy Wilder, 1950) with Gloria Swanson and William Holden. My favourite genre of movie is the musical and one of my absolute favourites is “Moulin Rouge” (Baz Luhrmann, 2001). It’s a film full of inspiration.

How have your designs evolved over time?

I have gone through phases. As I have learned more in fashion, my interests are in how to combine photography, illustration, visual art and eastern elements into a coherent visual language. My aesthetic is still a work in progress. I decided to develop a collective studio. Having worked at large design studio and having run my own business, the key to good work is talented people. With Athletics, I have pooled my wide range of skillsets to do both personal and client projects. The studio functions much like a small-sized company. I am fortunate enough to have really great environment that can bring both projects and talent to the studio environment.

Do you see yourself expanding globally and venturing into new markets?

All the time! I would love to express my signature by setting up other bases around the world. With the world changing so quickly, these are so many developments and we have high hopes for the future. In fashion we are constantly looking for a new balance, using history as our inspiration. The fashion world is over-flooded with imitators with imitation products, some of which enter the market before even the originals, giving more and more market power to only a few players. It is time for a moment of digression, a fashion pause which allows for real innovation, going deeper into fashion to find a more contemplative vision as opposed to churning out quick trends and cults. It is vital that we get this language right. That's why every designer would want to have their own showrooms around the world to connect to more fashion lovers.

What are you looking most forward to this year?

I'm looking forward to a couple things. I'm really excited to see what designers will put out for the next London Fashion Week. As the products of Ossie Clark have recently been so far from gorgeous, and I'm anxious to see the direction in which they take the line and the game overall. I'm also really looking forward to seeing what the final production will look like in 3D for my upcoming project. I'm really curious as to what else might come out for the line from our drawings. And finally, I'm most excited about having the chance to experiment in Russia as I will be travelling there for my research.

Garden Of Angels

Osman Ozdemir showing his S/S 09 collection called Garden Of Angels

Osman Ozdemir delights in contrasts whether that is a mix  of strong/romantic feminine print and plain fabrics or dark with light,

combine with his design philosophy of ‘natural uses of detail’, he synchronizes decorative materials with every Osman Ozdemir
Collection.

Designer approaches the blank jersey of their faces with silk chiffon, embroideries in colour and form, layering and pleating of his fabrics creates clever volumes on areas of the female form that contrast with and bring attention to the women. Emphasising innate individuality and his hands-on creative process.

His distinctive prints, the empire line, are a feature throughout the collections. Much more flattering then bras cutting, which does nothing.

Light of my life

Osman Ozdemir introduces hand painted ,high quality silver manipulated CINI; piece of earthenware decorated with opaque colored glazes and motifs on buttons, garments and decorative accessorizes and highly inspirational prints from the modern Kütahya; the Cotiaeum of the Romans, is located in what was anciently known as Phrygia; famous for its legendary King Midas, the last of the Phrygian kings who lived to regret his wish that all he touch be turned to gold. The cinis and motifs from Kutahya are reflected in dark blue, red, turquoise and beige interrupted by cotton velvet, cotton canvas, silk georgette, silk satin and blocks of silver.

Designer approaches the blank canvas of their own faces with colour and form. Cini merges delicate beautiful ribbed cotton fabrics lined in ultra soft silk printed and batik painted with cini designs. The layering, pleating of his fabrics creates clever volumes on areas of the female form that contrast with and bring attention to the legs. Emphasising innate individuality and his hands-on creative process itself, beautifully abstract cini-print design prints abudantly wrapped dresses in silk satin. Garment construction incorporates manipulation of handcrafted accessorizes with heavy and light fabrics and knitwear. Knitwear is handcrafted from the combination of satin and cotton.

Aizonai

Osman Ozdemir presents a collection inspired by the early history of AIZONAI, thought to date back to the 3rd millennium B.C. The architectural details on the coppers and outfits show us that they had their most affluent period around the 2nd century A.D. 
Huge public places grew on adjacent agora buildings and stone bridges and an architectural foundation very similar to that of the rich Roman towns of the western Coastlands. Aizonai is also known as the first stock exchange in the world.
The architectural details and the warriors’ clothing details of ZEUS are reflected in brown, green and gold tones of copper, interrupted by blocks of leathers and coppers. The S/S09 summer's stylish picnic requires a romantic yet elegantly theatrical dress code. 
His hands-on creative process itself produces silk dresses with drawstring neck and ribbon sash, pleated cotton and silk tulle halter neck dress with jersey lining, cotton dresses, blouses, skirts and trousers with leather trims. 
Coppers merge with delicate silk tattered cotton in creatively juxtaposed, dip-dyed silk tulle dresses with leather and copper. 

studio@osmanozdemir.com
www.osmanozdemir.com

You can view this article in Unfolded Magazine Issue 2

 

 

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