Tell me about the collection. What inspired it?
My grandmother—she passed away over the summer. We were clearing out her wardrobe and there were all of these clothes that were so important to me, but I didn’t feel like I could wear them because they were her clothes and couldn’t go over my body. So, I would just hold them against myself. But I didn’t want to get rid of them. This collection is about the connection between holding clothes against yourself but not actually wearing them—it’s a lot of pictures of clothes on top of clothes and trompe l’oeil effects. I ended up actually taking pictures of my grandmother and family photos that I didn’t experience, so I didn’t have a real connection to them, and digitized them up and did all this stuff to them to make them more relatable.
What was on your moodboard?
A lot of photos of my grandma, family photos, digital manipulation, color, and textiles—it was really about experimenting through textiles rather than image sourcing.
How does this collection compare to your previous work?
This collection is a lot more creative because it explores the connection people have with each other and with their clothes. Previously, my process has been about finding a source of inspiration and designing from that. This was more about creating feeling and a moment in time—it’s very personal.
Who do you see as the Zoe Champion man or woman?
Anyone can wear it—it’s for someone who’s fun and daring and likes to be an individual.
Do you think fashion should be political?
I think fashion is political, no matter if you’re trying to be or not. The fact that we wear it every single day has a large impact—particularly with all of the people involved in the process of making it. There’s just no way for it not to be political. But I also think fashion can just be fun and bring joy and excitement.
What do you see as your role as a designer, especially during this hyper-political time?
It’s about being very smart in the way that you make clothes—being environmental and ethical, but also creating clothes specifically for people to have a connection to. My thing is making clothes that people connect to and want to wear their whole lives.