Threadgate’s second collection at Monk House is bold, daring and eclectic. Threadgate the label is rooted in a love for the screen printing process and a history in fashion and design. Threadgate produces a limited selection of clothing and accessories which speak to the designer’s own wardrobe wants and needs. The label is a creative expression of a life lived and inspiration for each piece is closely linked to the designers own personal history and journey through life.
The latest collection features two main prints, the ‘Herbicrania' print - which is a four colour print featuring florals and also the 'With Aura’ print which involves a bold two colour stripe.
We love Gemma’s approach to making and designing, and we sat down with her last week to get to know what the collection is all about… scroll for full story and beautiful images of the new range! (Which is in store and online now...)
Gussie: First of all, congratulations on such an exciting new collection! The prints and colours are bold and eclectic… what were you looking at, thinking about and doing when coming up with the concepts and prints for these new pieces?
Gemma: Thank you Gussie, it is exciting to see the concept realised and the collection completed, I feel like this idea has been in the back of my head for a while now. I have suffered from migraines for over fifteen years which has been a journey of trying every remedy imaginable, pain killers, unsolicited advice, isolation, missed opportunities, missed social events and just general pain. I have learnt what works for me and learnt to surrender to the attack and I wanted to embrace my migraines further and use it as inspiration for a collection. I used the sensation and visual of an ocular migraine to produce the With Aura print, playing with the vibrations of fluorescent green with beige. For my floral print I sketched and painted feverfew, lavender, costmary and chamomile all are herbs which are meant to aid migraines.
How has putting together a collection or range for your label, Threadgate changes or evolved over time?
I mostly do everything myself so I have learnt to make some decisions in the design process to make things easier later in the process. The screen printing can be time consuming so designing a print with less colours and more colour overlay can be a way to make things a little easier. Although this collection I went back to a four colour print, maybe I'm a glutton for punishment.
How much of the design/making process is experimental? Or is everything quite planned out from print, to colour ways, to construction?
I am a pretty organised person and prefer things to be planned out rather than make it up as I go but there is always an element of experimentation with screen printing which can be a nice change. The Herbicrania floral print for example went through about eight iterations before becoming what it is today from experimenting with repetition, scale, colour and materials used. As you move from concept, sketching, CAD then to screen printing, the design can change a lot along the way.
Do you create or manufacture prints for other labels?
I have designed, printed and dyed for other labels and it is something I was discussing with a few labels before COVID-19 which will hopefully be able to happen in the future. It is a fun opportunity to work on different techniques and designs that I wouldn't do for Threadgate.
If so, how collaborative is this process and how does it shape the way you approach design and production for Threadgate?
Every job is different but I think there is always an equal element of collaboration as there is a reason you are choosing to work with someone so you need to trust their process. Working with other labels you have to work in strict timeframes and make definite decisions which is something I try to bring to Threadgate and treat myself and time like a client.
What is your favourite day of the week, and why?
It used to be Wednesday now it can be any day.
What is your favourite food right now?
What has been the biggest challenge or hurdle that you have had to overcome with your own label?
One of the biggest challenges would be having enough time in the week to do everything I want to do with Threadgate whilst also working part time. At this current time I have been able to just focus on Threadgate which has been really productive and a good coping mechanism.
How has coronavirus affected your label and thinking about creative practice ? If at all?
COVID-19 has affected the way my day is structured and how I spend my time which has affected Threadgate in a positive way. This collection was already a few months late so if I didn't have that extra time I feel it would have been a whole year late. It has given me the time to focus on the things and people that I want to and let go of things that don't matter as much. As I am locally made with locally sourced materials I have been fortunate that I haven't really been limited by international trade or materials like some other Australian labels.
What is one thing that has you most excited about for the future?
I am excited for the possibilities that Threadgate has and hope I can see them all come into fruition in the future.
What is your favourite piece from your latest collection and why?
They are all my favourites as I pretty much design what I want in my wardrobe. But I could say the Herbicrania Tote Bag, the floral print as it is a little more fluid than my previous print designs which I really like.
Images by Sarah Adamson
Words by Gussie Vinall Richardson
Layout by Shelby De Fazio