New Estonian Design: Pamela PeepsonLugemisaeg 6 min
Pamela Peepson and her collections have, even quite unexpectedly to herself, appeared in various media channels both home and abroad. For example at What a Fashion, Fucking Young and even in WGSN’s fashion trend forecasts among others. Not to mention different exhibitions where Pamela’s textiles have been shown. Recent addition to this list was being nominated for SÄSI award. This is an award for under 30-year-old Estonian designers which purpose is to make the fresh designer generation known to entrepreneurs, design lovers and wider audiences in general. Pamela herself prefers to take things calmly, reach to unforeseen destinations by accident and enjoy all the experiences life brings.
How did you end up working with textile and clothes?
I studied arts in Tallinn University and thought about specializing after graduation. I actually wanted to study fashion design, but I was afraid because I didn’t have any collections or stylistics to show. It seemed easier to study textile, although I hadn’t been directly involved with it either. The first year was more introductive so I didn’t start making clothes right away. On the contrary, I decided to take two years off and went to a vocational school to become a tailor-stylist. In fact, this all was just the best coincidence of timing and choices. I came to an understanding that textile could give me all the necessary self-expression skills and technical knowledge an opportunity to do everything myself from beginning to end. And as I had the basic skills of a tailor, I was able to set a bit more difficult goals to myself and achieve them.
You’re doing menswear. Why did you choose that particular field?
Maybe it’s because I’m not a man (laughs) and it was challenging. I actually feel that there are so many women’s clothes, so why should they need one more designer?! The design field of menswear in Estonia is a bit smaller and it was important for me not to feel like doing something we already have in tons. I wear lots of men’s clothes myself and they tend to be more comfortable – they have a loose fit and they’re more practical.
What kind of principles do you follow while designing?
I always want to do something that I’ve never done before, so I could learn as much as possible from the process. The last collection “Rearviewmirror” was all about experimenting with fabric dyeing. But… (Thinks) I tend to be obsessed with some certain ideas during my projects, I just have to realize them. “Rearviewmirror” was connected with a music documentary and after watching it I basically had the collection ready in my head. I was just so inspired by it.
At the same time it’s kind of elementary for me to work as practically and economically as possible – by using different existing materials, for example. I play with textures and surfaces which can make the cut itself quite simple. Quality and comfort are also important. I really like when a person feels himself comfortable in a piece of clothing that he almost cannot feel wearing. When I have reached a level where the clothing is not confining him. If someone is wearing my comfiest cotton T-shirt, for example, and it makes him feel better about himself, then this is the peak of my day – it’s the greatest feeling.
What are the current problems in fashion design in your opinion?
Let’s start with money (laughs). I think the answers have been the same for several years now – money and management. There’s nothing else to say about it. I try to do those things quietly, so that I wouldn’t have to suffer because of it for the rest of my life. I couldn’t and wouldn’t give up everything just to focus on one thing – it’s too risky. It’s improtant to keep the balance. Of course I would like to make a living with what I do, but you should have the freedom of creativity – doesn’t matter how it’s going to turn up in the end. Maybe I’ll be doing something new next year, but I’d most probably like to continue with fashion, textile and costumes, since those bring along interesting projects and the job is quite diverse. I’m a bit afraid to commit myself to something a 100% as I might get bored with it. I try to balance my projects – deal with my own things as much as I like, might not touch them for a couple of months after that and come back to it later. This keeps things fresh and exciting.
You have said that it’s good to be in Estonia, but why is it good to be in Estonia as a designer?
(Thinks) Contacts. I think that it’s very easy to make new contacts in here and in some aspects also manufacturing, making things, as everything is so close. It’s like some sort of comfort zone that works like tides. I really need a community around me who could give me feedback, who I can communicate with face-to-face and share my life. Although, I have traveled a lot – including by myself – I still feel that it’s also good to be at one place. I don’t necessarily want to conquer the world tomorrow.
What inspires you?
Life experiences, stepping out of your comfort zone – the courage to say ‘yes’ to things that previously didn’t seem to be for me or seemed impossible even. I wouldn’t go camping every day in October, but it’s actually super cool – especially with great and trustworthy people. New experiences, randomness and everything that leads you to somewhere you never thought you could be. Spontaneous events in life.
What are you doing right now?
Right now I’m styling, making different projects, commercials and individual styling. But there’s actually a secret project in the making. It’s not connected with clothes but more with design. It’s another thing that requires stepping out of my comfort zone.