I hadn't heard much about Flimsymoon for some time, although I had been avidly following the Facebook page. Then, with a flicker and a spark, it seemed the whole of the lingerie world was suddenly alight with the sparkle and the whisper of Kiss me under Flimsymoon, the debut collection of the brand. The kickstarter is go, Freyia, rallying team Flimsy from across the globe, calling all mermaids, pixies, faeries and nymphs to weave their thread into the fabric of the Flimsymoon story. And my heart jumped at the thought of being involved in such a beautiful quest.
Freyia has given me the key to a little part of her heart and mind, to wander through the forest of her imagination and observe the well which tells of her journey to bring Flimsymoon to life.
Whimsical, poetic and otherworldly, Flimsymoon intimates evoke a vision of femininity which playfully flits between the erotic and the innocent.
How did Flimsymoon come about? Was there anything in particular that spurred you into wanting to make lingerie?
Flimsymoon has been part of me forever! That sounds very dramatic, but I genuinely mean it. I have always been drawn to an aesthetic and conceptual sensibility which explores notions of the feminine and male/female relationships through stories, philosophy, visuals and science, just on a more simplistic level. As a child, I was fascinated by my mother's art prints, especially Hylas and the Nymphs - which I saw in person when I used to live in Manchester, it was such an amazing experience - I would pretend to be the girls in the painting, emerging from the water lily filled lake. As I got older, and especially at University, I began to deconstruct those ethereal images of women and understand them from a critical standpoint. I wanted Flimsymoon to explore this notion through clothing.
At first I was coming at these ideas from a fine art standpoint. I kind of rejected going into Fashion at about sixteen when I had a bad experience of 'fashion school'. However, I soon came to the realization that whilst I love art for art's sake, I can't make it. I'm far too practical. I'm a designer. I like to make things relate to the body and have an element of practicality. Lingerie seemed like the perfect clothing canvas to express my ideas. Plus, I just love nice underwear!
What were the main inspirations for your debut collection, Kiss me under flimsymoon?
Kiss me under flimsymoon is inspired by the heroine of the Romantic Ballet, which was a movement in dance which explored notions of romance and nature. Most of the stories are derivatives of 'Animal Bride' tales, which I became obsessed with at University. Aerne-Thompson, a narrative theorist, categorized a wealth of traditional and fairy stories, and the 'Animal Bride' trope is one which has a male protagonist and female-animal object of affection.
Critics like Boria Sax (who I LOVE. Such a cool guy) reads these tales as explorations of the male gaze. Sax says that the ethereal animal-woman (think The Little Mermaid, Odette in Swan Lake, the nymphs and sylphs) is a representation of the way men are fascinated by women, intrigued by their beauty and the way they are both the same and different to them. This can be seen as a rather misogynistic idea, but I believe it is quite romantic. Obviously I think women are more than objects to be admired (I mean I am one), but I think there's a time and a place for being a bit of a goddess, and in lingerie is definitely one of those times!
"Each piece is inspired by a romantic ballet heroine, and the spaces they inhabit."
A kickstarter has been launched for your debut collection, what will the funding most help with?
The collection is currently in prototype form. I need to create the collection, in its entirety, in a range of sizes, so I can approach a manufacturer and cost a limited run. I screen print and/or hand embroider each piece in the collection, and so have a lot of initial overheads, as well as all the labels for branding I need to get before I launch officially.
I imagine those who back the flimsymoon kickstarter can aquire a range of wonderful things?
Yes! Lots of exclusive gifts have been developed especially for the campaign. I have worked in collaboration with my friend and bespoke machine embroiderer, Daisy Sheldon on an eye mask and lingerie bag. My friend and emerging jeweller, Ruth Beesley has also developed a necklace just for us, which is very exciting. There's a couple of collection pieces you can get your hands on too. The leather collar is up for grabs, as well as a pared down 'Basics' version of our embellished knickers. Oh and not forgetting an exceptionally cute pair of nipple covers, you've had the pleasure of trying out! And some Holly Golightly inspired ear plugs made with vintage beads! Those who pledge under £10 have the option of donating 25% to 28 Too Many, a cause that helps fight female genital mutilation.
And don't forget the warm fuzzy feeling from helping me out ;)
What is your favourite piece from the Kiss me under flimsymoon collection?
That's really hard to answer! I'd say my favourite print is the Kiss me under flimsymoon signature print with the willows, stars and moons. It's taken from a series of illustrations I drew of this big willow in my auntie's garden. I am really pleased with the subtle print and how it is both playful, childlike, and ladylike. I'm also very proud of my hand sequinned version of the 'La Tete Dans Les Etoilles' collar, because it took me such a long time to finish. Each sequin is like a wish. The backing mesh is Victorian and the sequins are from the 1920s. I am really into clothing which is emotionally designed and has a history. Also, I just really like it visually, It's fun, but dainty.
How long did the collection take you to design? Have you come across any difficulties being an independent lingerie designer?
Well, I am only just at the beginning of my career. The collection is my final University work, which I am developing into a brand. The collection took me around six months to design and create the prototypes of, but the process of costing everything to move forwards, around a full time job has taken two years. I have come to a point where I need to get it out there. Hence the Kickstarter. Please help!
Will Flimsymoon be available to purchase online in the future?
Yes! Providing I get the funding, I will be able to create my final samples, get the business plan done and approach a manufacturer. I want to make it here in the UK on a small scale. Once I have the limited run, I intend to open an online store, and sell through bridal fairs and independent boutiques.
If you could describe flimsymoon in one word, what would it be?
Mine. It's like my child. My love. It's such a big part of me, and I am literally yearning to get it out there in the real world.
You can find Flimsymoon on: