Meet Lucy Dickinson, The 22-Year Old Fashion Designer Turning the Industry On Its Head

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Emerging fashion designer and recent RMIT graduate, Lucy Dickinson, offers a unique perspective towards the current fashion landscape. Her advocacy for ethical manufacturing and transparency within the fashion industry sets her apart from fellow designers. Having graduated last year, her work titled ‘I THOUGHT I’D SEEN IT ALL BUT I HADN’T SEEN THAT’ was on display at this year’s National Graduate Showcase for the Virgin Australia Melbourne Fashion Festival (VAMFF). Dickinson was chosen amongst eleven other young designers from both Melbourne and Sydney universities.

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Lucy Dickinson

Dickinson began her career in fashion at only fifteen, designing clothes for herself and friends back home in Newcastle, NSW. Beginning with a small label, she says her designs reflect her own personal style and act as an “overflowing of (her) wardrobe”.

Drawing on inspiration from 1970’s punk movement and the work of photographer Karlheinz Weinberger, Dickinson’s collection aims to reconnect young people today with original ideas of subculture and youth rebellion. The collection itself has a bold colour palette of black, white and red, juxtaposed with print, leather and mesh textures. The collection is reminiscent of designer Vivienne Westwood’s work during the late 1970’s that saw her labelled as the mother of punk.

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Dickinson says her work is a collaboration of both old and new; utilising the advantages of modern technologies to find new meaning in the origins of the anti-fashion movement of the 70’s. Through her use of embellishment, laser cutting, print and paint, her pieces are both unique and edgy, with no two being the same.

“My collection was inspired by unusual customisation techniques used within subcultures, particularly those utilising unexpected materials not often found within fashion,” she says.

Upon viewing the collection, it is clear how much time and effort has been put into it. Highlights of the collection include a hand-embroidered suit that reads “MAKE PEOPLE AFRAID TO LOVE YOU AGAIN” and graffiti-like tags on pieces such as “AVOID MEN IN STRIPED SHIRTS” and “IF I EVER END UP, HERE AGAIN I’LL KNOW I’M IN HELL”. Dickinson says her peers were a main source of inspiration for the collection.

“Working in such an insular environment in the studios at uni definitely had an impact and I wanted to include a lot of personal quotes too,” she says

“I’ve painted quotes from the Level 10 Love Island craze or just tinder messages.”

An inspiration to fellow design students and aspiring artists, Dickinson has a busy year ahead of her after also winning the AUSFF Scholarship and having i-D Fashion Week Dunedin in May. Amongst professional accomplishments, she also hopes to move to London later this year.

To view Lucy Dickinson’s collection and other work, click here.

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