What are your signature designs?
Signature pieces include the bumster, the frock coat, anything trompe-l'œil.
What is your favourite piece from any of your collections?
The wooden fan kilts from spring/summer 1999, the red slide dress from spring/summer 2001, the jellyfish dress from autumn/winter 2002.
How would you describe your work?
What's your ultimate goal?
To offer haute couture pieces as an integral part of the ready-to-wear collection.
What inspires you?
I find a multitude of influances inspiring - homeless to the rich, vulgar to the common.
Can fashion still have a political ambition?
Because fashion is so indicative of the political and social climate in which we live, what we wear will always be a symptom of our environment.
Who do you have in mind when you design?
A strong, independent woman who loves and lives fearlessly in equal measure.
Is the idea of creative collaboration important to you?
Collaborations give me the opportunity to work with peers who I admire, as well as pushing myself creatively. What's the point otherwise?
Who has been the greatest influence on your career?
Anyone I come into contact with and find a connection with.
How have you own experiences affected your work as a designer?
Working with the atelier at Givenchy showed me the possibilities that only haute couture can give a designer, where craftsmanship suddenly becomes state of the art.
Which is more important in your work: the process or the product?
Design development allows you to make mistakes; without screwing up once in a while you can 't ever move forward.
Is designing difficult for you, if so, what drives you to continue?
I enjoy putting the whole picture together - from the initial design phase to the shows and the stores. It's rewarding to see the entire concept work in unison. There is still a lot I want to achieve, my mind works very quickly and there isn't any room for complacency in this head!
Have you ever been influenced ore moved by the reaction to your designs?
When I watched Shalom Harlow being spray painted as the finale of my spring/summer 2001 show I was very moved. She was so poetic and elegant that I could hear the audience gasp - it really moved me to hear such an immediate reaction to my work.
What's your definition of beauty?
An image that combines opposing or unusual aesthetics.
What's your philosophy?
To make a piece that can transcend any trend and will still hold as much presence in 100 years' time, when you find it in an antique store, as when you bought it in my store yesterday.
What is the most importatnt lesson you've learned?
How trust really works.
Fashion Now 2, TASCHEN 2008