Categories FashionPosted on

Eddie Gavriilidis – The Fashion Designer and the Sampling Studio

You don’t need SEEN to tell you how full of fashion talent London is. The remarkable fashion designer, Eddie Gavriilidis, came to our attention recently via his work for the fast and frenetic London Fashion Week. Not only that, Eddie is the brains behind the Sampling Studio (part of Make It British) that supports emerging brands. He’s worked for Tom Ford, McQueen and PA5H amongst many others.

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Eddie Gavriilidis is a Greek-born fashion designer who trained at Central Saint Martins and Istituto Marangoni and upon graduating worked with top industry designers, Alexander McQueen, and Tom Ford. His work has been featured in influential international press including Vogue, Figaro, In Style, The Telegraph, and The Times among others. His graduate collection was also nominated for a Global Fashion Award in New York and his designs have been worn by celebrities, including the Kardashians, Rita Ora, Pixie Lott, Lindsay Lohan and many more.

He designed a gold leather laser-cut gown worn by Lady Gaga, which is now on permanent display at the Hard Rock Café, Riviera Maya after being sold for $29,000 in Beverly Hills. In addition to taking on one-off design commissions, Eddie spends most of his time working as a creative and technical consultant for fashion and lifestyle brands based in the UK, and as far afield as Singapore.

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As Director of The Sampling Studio, Eddie manages a team that works with established and emerging brands, supporting them with design, business planning, technicals and sampling. Recent commissions have included Liberty, The BBC, Collectif, DAKS, Edit and many others. In addition to managing The Sampling Studio, Eddie is also currently putting the finishing touches to a capsule couture collection. Concentrating on gowns that showcase Eddie’s embroidery design skills (which were honed at Tom Ford and in the McQueen Couture Studio), the upcoming collection will mix rock ‘n’ roll elements and pop culture influences. Eddie says, “Think of Bianca Jagger at Studio 54 mixed with heavily beaded yet modern patterns. I love baroque and want to present a fresh perspective.” SEEN thoroughly approves. We were lucky enough to catch up with Eddie and ask him a few questions recently…

SEEN: Eddie, SEEN can only imagine you must have been run off your feet for LFW17. Who have you been styling this season?

EDDIE GAVRIILIDIS: Fashion Week is the busiest time of the year for us. Here at The Sampling Studio we have produced both one-off pieces as well as full collections for clients, including PA5H, Edit the Brand, Belle Sauvage, and RAAB amongst many others. We’ve developed patterns and catwalk samples; accommodating the needs of each client individually, which means balancing a lot of fittings. Logistically we have stunning embroideries and beadings that are produced overseas, so there’s a lot to coordinate to make sure everything some together in time.

S: Tell us about your work at The Sampling Studio; what’s a typical day? (if there is such a thing!)

EG: Everyday is different, and that’s the magic of what we do. Usually I’m at the studio in Shoreditch around 10am, after a workout and a strong coffee. Once I’m in, I check in with the team, finding out where we’re at with all the garments. I find solutions to issues as necessary and also constantly re-prioritise commissions.

At any one time I can be managing garment sampling for well known brands or meeting with a client to hand over a finished bespoke commission. Usually I have 3-6 client appointments, or fittings with brands or individuals each day. Depending on what comes out of these appointments, I can end up designing a new custom embroidery or designing extra looks for a show.

Recently Emma Soames (granddaughter of Winston Churchill) accompanied a client for a fitting and we got chatting about her time as Editor at The Telegraph. Straight after that, I lectured to a group of American fashion students about the opportunities and challenges of the industry and had to rush over to Knightsbridge to fit a dress for an Arab Princess..

The Sampling Studio was created to accommodate the needs of fashion brands, covering patterns, samples, fittings and production. For emerging brands, we know that launching a brand can be daunting and we are here to help with our knowledge of fabrics, pattern-cutting, grading, garment production, wholesale outlets and much more. We also love working with emerging designers and new brands; they are the future of the London scene and they are the ones that are the most experimental and interesting to work with.

S: SEEN enjoyed the PA5H show last year very much. What inspires you when you embark on styling a catwalk show?

EG: I’m really glad you enjoyed the PA5H show! I worked closely with PA5H from the very beginning as a creative consultant, alongside the owner and creative director Dasha Pashevkina. Being a part of the emerging designer platform On – Off during LFW was a great experience. There was a great turnout and a lot of press. Everyone on the team had a voice when it came to the styling, but it was celebrity stylist Alexis Knox that brought everything together.  She edited down all of those different ideas and styled the show brilliantly.

As a stylist it isn’t just about putting outfits together, it’s also about the management of the whole backstage area, a team of dressers, figuring out who swaps shoes and when… it’s a really challenging job that requires a lot of planning. Backstage at the show was mental but you’d never have guessed! The collection took a more RTW angle and the splashes of colour and 90s pop references were about not taking ourselves too seriously. Fashion is supposed to be fun! Ultimately the house was full and it was a great show.

S: Are there particular designers or stylists who have inspired you?

EG: Every season is different and I love elements from many collections. For example, I admire Anthony Vaccarello and I think his work at Yves Saint Laurent is effortless and sexy. Gucci‘s show was colourful and inspired with an unpredictable twist that you wouldn’t expect from a heritage brand. LFW is unique; full of eccentric characters and has inspiration all around me, from Daniel Lismore’s walking art, to all the street fashion shots outside the venues. It’s nice to go party-hopping and see who’s out and about.

S: What’s your favourite thing to do in London when you have an hour or two to spare?

EG: I love London generally and it’s been my home for the last 10 years. I couldn’t imagine living anywhere else. I live in Bow by Regent’s Canal and enjoy taking my dog, Coco, for long walks, up towards Limehouse, or if I’m feeling in the mood, sometimes all the way to Camden. The Narrow and The Gun are two great local pubs, and there’s a place called Sylvia’s next to Limehouse Station that does amazing breakfasts. I usually have brunch there at least once a month.

Lastly, I recently bought a flat in an old converted church. It’s over 160 years old, and I’m doing bits and pieces when I get a chance. I’ve uncovered some great period features that were boarded up, and I enjoy getting my hands dirty when I get the chance.

Thank you Eddie, for taking time out of your busy schedule to speak to SEEN. Check out the Sampling Studio here.

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Categories ArtPosted on

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Categories DesignPosted on

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