Laura Jasiunaite: Constructing Deconstructed Fashion
By Kabyashree Saikia
As contemporary streetwear becomes a leading trend in the menswear market, London based Lithuanian designer, Laura Jasiunaite explains her flair for challenging the traditional norms of pattern cutting through draping and deconstructing. As the FTS team wrapped up after the filming for the website's first fashion film 'Constructing Deconstructed Fashion', the young designer gave us an insight into her design aesthetics and latest collection.
FTS: Your clothing challenges the traditional idea of fashion. Your previous collections have shown powerful vibes of energy. How would you personally describe your design aesthetics and the idea?
Laura: With my previous collection called Volcano, I was designing some clothing for, what I felt like would be for a very strong independent woman or man, as my designs are often unisex. As you mentioned, I was really trying to convey this feeling of power and a very explosive energy. I also created a lot of draping in this collection, as I believe it is one of my strongest aspects in design; that gives me the most freedom to create. I made these pair of trousers out of a dress and I used the draping technique all over the trousers and it just instantly created so much volume. So it’s definitely a piece that stands out. By doing so that’s what I wanted to challenge – the conventional idea of clothing.
FTS: You said draping provides you a certain form of freedom to design? Could you tell us a little more about this?
Laura: I feel like draping is a way that allows you to construct clothing in a more free way rather than following the traditional norms of pattern cutting. Personally, draping allows me to be creative with design. You can be very experimental with this (draping) technique. I like the feel of the fabric and the weight of it – I really enjoy working with that instead of only drawing. I feel like throughout my process of designing I have been really inspired by Rick Owens and designers like Comme des Garçons, Rei Kawakubo and Yohji Yamamoto. They make something out of plane fabric and make it look 3D. It is more sculptural work rather than just flat clothes. Definitely, Yamamoto specifically who is very clever with the construction of his clothing – pieces that look very careless yet cleverly constructed.
FTS: We have featured one of your pieces from the latest, AW17 collection in our fashion film. Tell us a little about that.
Laura: For my recent collection Desolation AW17, I was very much inspired by the post-war era where people didn’t have many resources and it was a lot of cheap fabrics being used like hemp. That’s how I actually started off for this specific collection, and I ended up using linen. I really explored deconstruction for this season where I deconstructed a jacket. Here, this gave me an insight of how tailoring really is. When I learnt that I really wanted to challenge it. So my final garment is very much like a deconstructed jacket falling off the shoulder (as seen in the film). The jacket has been designed in such a way as if two jackets have been worn together. I thought it was quite interesting because in terms of styling we always wear clothes a certain way. That’s a personality aspect I wanted to incorporate into this – a person just wearing a jacket and it is almost falling off his body. Its something I personally think looks extremely beautiful. Its one of the most interesting pieces from my latest collection because you can wear it in so many ways like wear it hanging off your back or you can button it up and that makes it look more formal.
FTS: You have described your designs as unisex. However some could be seen as more feminine and some masculine. How do you feel about this blurring gender identity that you represent through your clothing?
Laura: Doing unisex clothing came naturally to me. It’s not something that I ever really thought of but, me personally, I wear clothes I don’t care whether it was for men or women. It’s just clothes that I felt comfortable with. Most of my designs are slightly either more feminine or more masculine. However, I still believe anyone can wear that. That is the beauty of contemporary fashion. It is not definitive on the basis of gender. That’s what I believe with fashion as an idea. There shouldn’t be any line or boundary between womenswear and menswear. Obviously, there are so many designers who are making this possible by blurring out the boundaries. Rick Ownes being one of the best examples, allowing draping on men – something that could be described as a non-traditional and transgressive norm in fashion culture.
Model: Finn Crawford