Martina Spetlova is the Central Saint Martins-trained Czech designer behind this month’s i-Sustain.
Working with end of line fabrics and so called ‘waste material’, Martina creates bright, patchwork clothes in a delicious array of fabrics. For her most recent collection, she worked with the zip manufacturer YKK, using their dead-stock to create interlocking panels in a varied palette of donated and discarded fabrics and yarns. The resulting garments offer a unique aesthetic, a fashion designer’s take on Lego; clashing texture and colour to create a playful and engaging insight in to the many possibilities that emerge when other people’s trash becomes your treasure!
i-D online took classes in chemistry, philosophy and politics with the designer. Click here for the full shoot!
Why do you think you’re part of this project? I make sure that the processes and elements I combine to create finished pieces are kind to the environment. I work with end of line fabrics and yarns from European mills which the industry sees as waste material, but which I am able to use for my limited edition collections. I also work with leather companies who have sustainable policies.
Do you have a philosophy? Not so much a philosophy, more a formula to the way I work. I studied chemistry in Prague before I went to CSM to study fashion and I found some similarities between the two disciplines. The way I experiment with colours and textures in the design process at my studio echoes the blending and mixing of chemicals in order to achieve a prescribed reaction within the laboratory.
Who or what inspires you? I’m inspired by many varied things as I spend weeks researching before I start my collections. Generally my ideas tend to evolve from this research by experimenting in the studio. I am very hands on and I’m always testing and mixing the combinations and playing with various textures and colours.
What would you take to the streets and protest about? I do think it is vitally important to search new ways to be sustainable within our throwaway consumer society – so I would definitely protest to raise awareness about the multitude of problems within the manufacture and distribution of textiles on a global scale. So… I’ll be camping at St Paul’s tomorrow!
What’s unique about your work? The outcomes from my experiments with textiles and knits.
What could you do better? Being sustainable as a designer is always challenging and I do aim to better my collections each season. One thing I would love to improve is the ways in which I present my work and I would love to be able to do a catwalk show next season, however this requires some ‘proper’ funding so please send donations!!
What are you working on now? New collection.
Head here to see our i-Sustain series in full.