Rising star: Nicole Murray
Last year, London College of Fashion MA graduate Nicole Murray sold her first autumn/winter 2010 collection exclusively to Harrods, as part of a platform for young designers. Her debut collection received critical acclaim and was praised by Grazia magazine for its sophisticated “glamour” and Fash-Pack blog, for its “beautiful execution”. Murray’s spring/summer 2011 collection focused on the use of complementary blue and nude palettes and drew from Grecian influences. Rouching, draping and knotting were used in the detailing of her free flowing floor length dresses. Murray’s autumn/winter 2011 was shown in the exhibition at February’s London Fashion Week and she told me her chosen colour palette consisted of “amethyst, heather, caramel and aubergine”. Her upcoming collection boasts mauve high necked shirts with caramel leather collars, cascading floor length dresses and sheer white lace slips. Her favourite piece in the collection is an amethyst gown with “twisted silk and leather strap details”. Murray accredits the artist Hans Bellmer and his “elegant illustrations of the 1940s”, with her inspiration. Celebration of 40s elegance is seen throughout Murray’s collections, her autumn/winter 2010 debut featured skinny cigarette trousers, tassel detailing and nude elbow length gloves.
Murray told me her favourite designer was Roland Mouret due his ability to make women sexy. She believes this to be “one of the most important things in womenswear” and this intention is reflected in Murray’s own work. In her autumn/winter 2010 collection the nipped in waists of her dresses and tailoring of her leather panelled jackets celebrate the female figure and its curving contours.
For Nicole the opening months of 2011 have been exciting and hectic. As well as preparing her collection for last month’s London Fashion Week, Nicole told me she has been involved with Vauxhall Talent Scout and talking to both Elle and Vogue about the collection which she plans to take to show in Paris this month. When naming her favourite collection at LFW she enthusiastically exclaimed “I love Erdem! I always do”. Murray’s use of complementary block colour and 1940s glamour marks her as an exciting rising star of 2011. Nicole told me she would love to dress Keira Knightley, Helen Mirren and Marion Cottiliard at an awards ceremony due to their embodiment of “strong elegant women”. Due to Murray’s rising fame in the fashion world, it is clear that this sartorial dream could soon become a reality.
Nicole Murray’s collections can be found at www.whats-that-label.com and Sid Concept.
Words by LAURA HAWKINS