Simon Waller

...designing menswear with an eerie twist

Elements of puppetry, gothica and 18th century aristocracy underpin this, my first menswear collection. Designers Boudicca and Bruno Pieters have been influential alongside films such as "Being John Malcovich", "The Cell" and music videos from Marilyn Manson. These references influenced the composition of silhouette, fabric choice and detailing, combining towards the overall aesthetic. Body joints have been highlighted throughout, aiming to emphasise the movements of the wearer through knee pleats, deep cuffs to elbow and high collar stands. Traditionally tailored pieces combined with organza-covered shirts add distinction and vibrancy to this deliberately ominous collection. Laser-cut leather and lace/embroidery coupled with glistening deep burgundy fabrics break up the monochrome palette and infuse the collection with an edge of "gothic glamour".

Simon is a fashion designer today, because...

I seem to have ended up in this position, but am really happy with where I am and what I am doing.

If Simon would not have become a designer, he would be...

Frankly: probably fitting burglar alarms in people's houses back where I lived before I went to university. Glam!

Simon spent his life school years...

In a town called Esher in Surrey.

Simon's friends think...

Most of them are very creative people, but none of them are in fashion. I don’t think they understood what I was doing at first, seeing my work at GFW surprised quite a few of them. It's great having a tight group of creative friends.

When Simon was a teenager, he dreamed of being...

Probably doing something different to what I am doing now. I love what I do, but it wasn’t the dream when I was young.

He knew he would become a fashion designer when...

Honestly, when he missed all the UCAS dates for the graphics and illustrations courses so applied for a fashion course instead at UEL.

He would never...

Do a lot of things he has done in the past. He has learnt a lot from making mistakes, doing things he possibly shouldn’t have. Have the confidence to be decisive. Whether it’s right or wrong, you will learn a lot more in the long run.

Simon gets inspired by...

The future possibilities and directions of formal menswear. The making and construction of clothes has also been a growing inspiration to me over the last year.

The defining moment in his career was...

Getting into the final ten (Gold Award) at the Gala show at Graduate Fashion week. Whether it will define a career, I will have to wait and see, but it’s definitely given me a lot more confidence in what I do.

For a day, Simon would like to be...

With all the members of my family who have passed away or who I never had a chance to meet. I think they would be proud of what I have achieved and who I have become (It’s not all that much, but I think they would be proud all the same).

If Simon ruled the world, he would...

Of course I would try to make the world a better place, but I wouldn’t try to get political! Fashion designers don’t make good politicians. Some people need to remember that! 
I would travel all over the world and meet as many different people as I could. That would be the most rewarding.

In 10 years from now, Simon would like to see himself?

It used to be to have my own menswear label and, most of all, be HAPPY, but now all he wants to do is rule the world. Whatever gave him that idea!

Simon would describe his personality as...

Easy-going but now very serious about what I do (Probably used to play a little too hard, but I have learnt that shifting the balance and knuckling down is a lot more rewarding). I've grown a lot as a person and designer in the last year.

Simon wishes the next Simon Waller...

Good Luck I suppose. Words of advice, work hard, be honest, be confident.
 But let’s face it, I totally forgot most of the advice I was told by the time I left the room. Work it out yourself, it will mean more to you!

If he could live his life again...

I’d do a thousand things differently, but still probably end up making as many mistakes. I’d eventually turn out exactly the same anyway. I would appreciate all the things I took for granted as a kid and play even more sport.