Denim, leather and satin outerwear are back and this time, they’re personal.
Nothing quite makes a mark like an embroidered monogram or swathing signature and with the rise of iron and sew-on patches and badges, we’re pretty inspired to get crafty this summer.
Seen everywhere from runways and street style to festivals and sporting events, the personalisation trend is here to stay.
Gigi is constantly reminding us of her name with monogram detailed shirts; Alexa skips luggage tags in favour of her initials printed onto her leather Louis; Burberry did it; Topshop is doing it, and you’ll be hard pressed to find a store that isn’t packing ready-patched denim in every corner.
But, let’s put a little more soul into things. After all, this trend is all about making a unique and individual style statement. You need some badged, scarred and monogrammed gear, that’s for sure… but you don’t want a thousand other girls to have the exact same thing. And so, a guide to real personalisation from threading and pinning to painting and fraying.
Get the Look:
Create your own take on high street badged goods by thrifting denim and faded leather jackets, before embellishing them with a collection of enamel pins and embroidered patches. Urban Outfitters, ASOS and Georgia Perry all have fantastic selections, but be sure to check out the accessory and jewellery bins at your local charity shops and vintage stores; they’re a goldmine for this kind of thing.
Alternatively, get friendly with eBay again. Have a thing for Jurassic Park? Particularly like the peach emoji? Addicted to McDonald’s fries? Take to the eBay and Etsy search bars to find pins and badges that reflect your personality. When you’re done, map out your design, pop on a thimble (vital when sewing stiff denim and leather) and get customising!
Denim jackets look best when covered in a wild array of random and fun cloth pieces, while leather seems to get a rocker-edge from being generously studded with metal pins proclaiming where you’re from, where you’ve been and what teams you support.
If you’re art and design savvy, consider taking inspiration from Gucci and Elizabeth Ilsley’s gorgeous painted leather jackets. Whether it’s your name, a stencil flower, or a witty statement you want splashed across your back, be sure to use high quality acrylic paint and work in layers.
Consult the professionals for major design jobs like fraying, re-lining and embroidering. The Levi’s Tailor Shop is taking up residence in Selfridges Oxford Street from 7 July-8 August, offering complimentary jean length alteration and exclusive patches, pins and studs, some of which have been designed by Poppy Delevingne. Visit Levi’s for more info.
Topshop’s collaboration with Hand & Lock (the embroidery Gods) has recently become a permanent feature in the Oxford Street store. Just pop in, find an item you love, then take it to the Hand & Lock counter to have your name put on it.
If you can’t get to London, do what I did and contact Hand & Lock directly via their website. They’ll give you a range of size, style and colour options, but classic ideas are big italicised ‘Pink Lady’ letters on the back, or cute name-badge style emblems on the breast. They also offer a small collection of readymade iron ons for your denim needs.
Build up a collection of customised mainstay and novelty pieces to really take advantage of this trend. The only rule is to make it completely, distinctly, eccentrically yours.