Tell us about yourself
I'm a London based fashion designer specializing in Womenswear in the high-end market. After graduating and opening the University of Westminster show and armed with training from Celine and Alexander McQueen I now design private commissions for brands and high profile personalities.
How did you get into design?
I’ve been in the fashion industry for about 10 years now but it wasn’t until 2008 when I embarked on a visually stimulating journey around the world that I realised design was my most fitting path – it was a ‘light bulb’ moment for me, I sat bolt upright one morning and my future was clear.
What is in design that called you?
As a child, I used to make things all the time but not necessarily clothes – I was more of a tomboy and loved to get my hands dirty. That’s why I love to use unconventional materials like wood and perspex now and incorporate them into functional design. I love the experimenting stages and the making process – I still like to get my hands dirty but hopefully now the outcome is much more beautiful, modern and wearable!
How would you describe your style?
I love structure, clean lines and modernity.
Tell us more about the fashion houses and celebrities you have worked with
I have had the privilege of working in some incredibly reputable fashion houses – the insight into the industry when working for an established brand is an indescribable and priceless experience. You also learn what you love and hate about fashion – at Celine I fell in love with fabric and the boundless possibilities it can offer. At Alexander McQueen my aesthetic was refined and I new, (but still appreciate the beauty and skill) embellishment was not for me.
I have also worked with many high profile personalities in both design and on fashion shoots. My biggest one to date is designing for the ‘colossal’ Lady Gaga – your guaranteed it’ll be a fun project!
How will your background help you as a judge?
I have lots of experience when it comes to incorporating more unconventional and harder elements into wearable garments for the body – I’m hoping this will help!
Tell us about expectations on Design Genius
I'm looking forward to seeing how the contestants approach each challenge, it will be interesting to see the differences in training from around the world.
What are you looking for from a Design Genius?
They need to show passion and have a strong understanding of what looks good - if you have both of these assets the Genius part will come.
What advise would you give to young designers starting in the industry?
Firstly they need to understand that fashion is a hard industry and not glamorous at all, you must 100% know it’s what you really want to do it. You've got to work hard for long hours and in the early stages for not a lot of recognition or reward but if your passionate and persistent it can be the most satisfying and rewarding job around.
My best advice would be to get as much work experience as possible – expect to work for free but the experience you gain will be priceless. And invest in a good recognized University – it will expose you to the right processes.
What annoys you from new designers of today?
I don’t like arrogance. You need confidence but there’s a difference between arrogance and confidence and some new designers don’t get that.www.lisaclayton.co.uk