It all started at Truro College in 2012 ………………………………… As part of my second year of my commercial Fashion Foundation Degree, I decided to make a collection of bright coloured alternative clothing, and it for once turned out a success! I made 3 items – 2 dresses and a skirt out of fun colourful and children’s fabrics. I was really pleased with the results! As part of my uni brief I also had to set up promotion for my items and name the brand etc, so I set up a Facebook page and came up with the name, I made a few bags to sell on Etsy and got a great response. I then completed a photoshoot with a local model and a photographer from the college of the 3 dresses that I had made, I posted the pictures on here and also to some blogs and had people enquiring to buy things. I also had these 3 garments advertised as part of the college exhibition, I left out over 100 business cards with a link to my Facebook page and within 2 days they had all gone so I had to drop off more!
I went from there, people wanted to buy bits and order them specially (starting with friends and people I knew) and then moving on to people all around the world.
I am inspired by lots of things, I would say that my main inspiration is the fabrics that I choose, the colours are the focus of my design. I basically buy fabric that I like and think ‘oooh I want that!’ I love vintage clothing, especially the silhouettes of the 1950s and these shapes can be seen throughout my collection, the glamour, femininity and tailoring of this era is an inspiration in itself. I enjoy looking at vintage and handmade items in vintage stores and online. I much prefer buying handmade or items made in England, I feel that the personality of these items has a far greater satisfaction than buying something from the high street which has been made in a mass produced Asian factory setting and that can basically be brought in a similar form from a number of shops. Having something made in small quantities is individual to the wearer and creates excitement and your own image.
All Silly Old Sea Dog items are passionately designed and made in the UK, we do not produce overseas. Items are all designed and sampled from my studio in Newquay, before heading to our small factory in Scotland where they are made into all sizes and ready to sell.
Our sizes stocked are between a UK 6 and 24. All of our garments are made from 100% cotton and why not add a petticoat to give your circular skirt a wow factor?
In addition to our ethics on UK production, we are also strong advocates of the body positive movement. Our dresses are available to buy in UK sizes 6-24 and we always strive to use models of different sizes in our campaigns to show how our products can look on every body type, regardless whether you’re an 8 or an 18!
The Silly Old Sea Dog highlights so far include winning a stand in the ASOS competition for graduates at Clothes Show Live 2013 (and we have attended every year since), receiving local, national and international press, attending Paris Plus Size Fashion week, having Hayley Hasselhoff wear one of our dresses on the catwalk and appearing in the UK TV advert for Etsy.
In addition to running Silly Old sea Dog, I am also a writer and Stylist for Vintage Life Magazine – the UK’s largest mag for vintage enthusiasts – I produce a monthly piece for them styling a number of shoots from across the eras. I have also appeared on UK TV on 2015’s series of ITV’s dating show – Take Me Out with Paddy McGuinness.
If you would like to meet us, please do come and meet us at one of the many events we are attending accross the UK – you can find a list of them here: https://www.sillyoldseadog.com/events/