Creativity in the Countryside: Wold Couture
Today we're thrilled to feature a small, creative business that takes its inspiration from the natural world. Jess at Wold Couture designs the most beautiful wedding dresses and accessories, drawing on her local environment to inspire and motivate her creative process. Over to her...
Wold Couture began in essence when I lived and worked in London, but it only truly came into its own when I moved back to the Lincolnshire Wolds - where I spent most of my childhood - and became inspired by the surrounding beauty once more.
Though I designed and made bridal-wear in London, the business itself was launched from one dress inspired by the dew-covered cobwebs I saw as I walked through the Wolds. This dress still features in the bridal collections today, and is, I believe, testament to the power and longevity of natural patterns and design.
Our style overall is quite romantic and incorporates some vintage twists as well as lots of delicate decoration influenced by nature. Both decoration and silhouette are inspired in part by what I find outdoors - flowers, clouds, the shapes of trees - but I find the best ideas come when you’re not looking for them. On a weekend walk to somewhere new, in the bath, whilst travelling – sometimes a design comes fully formed into my mind and I’m not entirely sure how it got there.
The design is just one part though, and what comes next is much more work. To take this idea and turn it into a fully formed and functioning dress certainly takes an alarming amount of coffee, very little sleep and plenty of arguments with the sewing machine. I design and make in my workshop in a sea of fabric and by the time I am done I need another week just to find the floor again. Luckily, the view from my window out onto the fields ensures a constant supply of inspiration, particularly because the view changes not only seasonally, but throughout each day too. Early evening is the most beautiful time to look out, and I can watch the sunset and cloud formations across the vast expanse of the Lincolnshire skyline - it's wonderful!
Currently, I'm working on a few exciting projects. First is a look-book for two of my favourite dresses that I'll send to potential stockists - it's been great fun scouting locations to shoot the dresses, whether in an urban environment to contrast with the design, or out in the countryside near home.
Alongside this we are also finishing up a new accessories range which will soon be available online. As the business is so intertwined with where its located, I think it's so important to keep connected in as many ways as possible. Recently I started tutoring at a local gallery (click here to find out more) - the courses cover everything from upcycling to hand embroidery, and are a great way to chat about ideas, share my passion with fellow creatives, and get more involved in the local community. Finally(!), I'm also studying myself - I'm halfway through a masters degree in fashion with hopes to launch a collection of sustainable ‘slow’ fashion sometime next year.
Wold Couture has always been about bespoke design, but over the next few months we'll be focusing more on the collections, which will enable me to do more of what I love: designing. If all goes to plan we hope to be employing a small team of seamstresses to work on both bridal and fashion collections in order to maintain our 'Made in England' brand. I can't wait.
Thanks Jess - sustainable 'slow' fashion sounds just up our street!
If your creative business takes inspiration from the natural world, and you'd like to be featured in a similar post on Creative Countryside, get in touch by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. There is no payment involved; we just like to showcase creative talent whenever we can!