Monday, April 18, 2011

7 Days of Designers- Interview with Heidi Ackerman

Heidi Ackerman's obsession with the future is the basis for her designs.  Through the combination of futuristic landscapes and classics from the past, she creates an almost bizarre fusion of art and fashion.  Because of her thoughts on the future and how we affect it, Ackerman tends to use eco-friendly materials to highlight the importance of sustainability.  Her interest in sustainability stemmed from a trip she took during her second year at Ryerson for tree planting.  It was through this experience that she took a special interest in the environment, especially regarding the devastation of landscapes by the forest industry.  Ackerman says that she's had an interest in fashion for a long time.  She recalls how her grandmother would sew a lot, which attributed to her skill in sewing at a young age.
Though this upcoming collection relies on a few sustainable materials such as locally produced wood accessories, its main focus is exploration, experimentation, and collaboration.  For this collection, she is working with Lindsay Sinclair, an industrial design major.  With this, the two combine principles in fashion and industrial design such as art, structure, and material.  This acts as an opportunity for them both to explore the possibilities between design and structure, creating pieces that focus less on the ready-to-wear aspect of fashion and more on its artistic flare.  Ackerman had a bit of trouble finding the right words to describe her upcoming collection.  Eventually, with the help of Sinclair, they agreed on this description: "It seems almost alien.  We don't know what time or place- whether it's the past, present, or future".

Because Ackerman is showcasing on the "Fashion/Unfashion" day at the [FAT], I asked her what "unfashion" means to her.  She describes unfashion as involving a less commercial aspect where it relies more on art, not sales.  She says that she is interested in a commercial line for the future; but as of right now, she's more interested in exploring.  She expresses that it can be difficult being a young designer now, especially with a large variety of "fast fashion".  With this, she says that many people can't afford custom designs since they tend to be more expensive and head towards cheaper commercial fashion.  Ackerman thinks that there is increasing appreciation for fashion as Toronto's fashion and design community grows.  In comparison to oversea fashion meccas, she views North America as being more focused on commercialized fashion; whereas, in Europe and Asia, there is more support for "young designers doing weird stuff".

Heidi Ackerman and Lindsay Sinclair will be showcasing at 8:45 pm on April 28 at the Toronto Alternative Arts & Fashion Week.

Thank you to Heidi Ackerman for taking time to do this interview!
Special thanks to Theresa Micallef of [FAT] for facilitating this.

Images from [FAT]'s Flickr


  1. Whoa I'm lovin' the futuristic inspiration, it's a cool contrast to all of the vintage inspired clothing I see (not that I don't love that too). Thanks for the comment and the birthday wishes :)

    --Megan//The Martian Tide


You might like:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...