So let me jump right to it…
I believe that my Neckwear is worthy of being worn by one of the biggest superstars on this planet. A bold statement I know but if you’ve read some of my previous blog posts such as ‘Dirty Little Secret’ you’d understand the transformation that has occurred within me that has enabled me to arrive at this level of confidence. And whilst it is difficult for me to clearly articulate the significance, I have experienced the most bizarre sequence of events over the last 12 months which I have no doubt in my mind was designed for the sweetest of success stories to unfold.
With that said, it was certainly by design that I got to meet my ultimate style muse, will.i.am, at the auditions of the Voice UK last October. Initially, my hope for meeting him was that he would tweet a picture of himself wearing the Urbanized Neckwear that I gifted to him but had he done so, I would have never realised that my focus for our encounter was all wrong. I fell into my old trap of not thinking big enough and had set my bar way too low. I initially desired a mention in a short lived tweet but instead I should have concentrated on also creating an impression that encouraged a meaningful connection of longevity allowing him to see my raw potential as a designer and want to connect with me much like he does with his mentees in music.
Despite this, I knew that there was still a chance for me to capitalise on this opportunity and was positive that should I try to reconnect with Will for a second time that he would remember our first encounter… trust me it was flamboyant! I just needed to raise my bar and create a piece of Neckwear worthy of a second shot at grabbing and then this time keeping his attention.
Whilst I have every confidence that my designs are innovative and out-of-the-box enough to compliment Will’s world renowned fashion sense and style, what I produced for him needed to be created from a material equally as unique. So, the week after meeting him, again as if by design I spotted the most exquisite fabric wall hanging made by a fellow Art& Raw Talent 2018 winner Rosanna Johnson. I instantly knew I had to ask her to get on board by creating some of her eye-catching fabric for my design. The layered distressed linear texture she creates through her handmade fabric was just what I needed to take my Neckwear to the next level.
So work commenced on creating a unique piece of Wearable Art for Will. At that point I still didn’t quite know how I would get directly to him again. Simply sending him the completed piece wouldn’t have been enough and the chances of me meeting him directly again was remote. I needed to come up with a powerful way to grab his attention for the second time and who better to catch Will’s eye but Will himself! So with the help of another ‘coincidental’ and timely connection, contact was made with Will’s official UK lookalike, Lewis Bojang. He took one look at the images on my Instagram page and with very little persuasion, he too agreed to help me execute my ambitious plan.
With the perfectly designed Neckwear created, photographer in place, a music studio secured as the ideal backdrop for a photo shoot and Lewis poised to depict the man himself, everything fell seamlessly into place. The atmosphere was warm and relaxed as images carefully staged to convince Will that he could help make Neckwear become the next big thing, were captured. Feelings of relief, exhaustion, pride, delight and excitement best describe how I felt after the shoot. However, over everything hearing Lewis fondly share his experiences of meeting and working directly with Will left me with an overwhelming desire to work with the real deal myself and strengthened my belief that it was possible.
I feel a huge sense of pride as I unveil my most accomplished piece yet. I honestly feel that I have succeeded in reinventing an age old classic by transforming the concept of the common neck scarf into something that is innovative, stylish and unlike any other fashion accessory that I have ever seen.
Since posting about my encounter with Will, both his executive stylist Lore Phillips and Polo Molina, the manager of Black Eyed Peas have spotted and liked a number of my posts. I know this might not seem like much to some but I mention it because as an emerging designer, knowing that two of the world’s biggest players in fashion and music have seen and taken the time to show my designs some digital love, fills me with an enormous boost of confidence and hope that I will achieve my aim of connecting with Will.
Now the foundation is set, my biggest challenge is to make sure that all of my efforts are seen and most importantly acted upon by the right people, including Will himself. I don’t have the luxury of big business budgets or teams of people around me so hard work, determination and resourcefulness will remain key. At this point in my plan, I am keeping central to my mind the biggest lesson that I have learnt from my experience in business which is that the energy we create will always attract the right people and opportunities we need to succeed.
Sometimes in life regular people who choose to step out of their comfort zone in pursuit of their dreams, are presented with huge life changing opportunities; I truly believe that this is mine and that every experience I have encountered to date has been designed to prepare me for the great things that are yet to come. Despite the pressure of the unknown, this is by far one of the most fun and exciting experiences I’ve had in my whole life and even though my gut is doing somersaults right now, I honestly know that only amazing things will flow.
This beautifully designed tale is far from over; I’m ready to execute the next stage of my plan… will.i.am, I hope you’re ready cos I’m coming for ya!
Photography: Marcus Branston
Location: The Think Tank Studios