ateliertammam

A web log about putting decadence in a small sustainable package. www.tammam.co.uk

Tag: craft

2020 a view from inside the Atelier

It’s been a busy year for Atelier Tammam, from couture bridal gowns to trips to India to antique dress restorations we’ve been using our unique sustainable studio to make (and reinvent) the best fashion possible, collaborating with incredible talent in India and the UK. We have always offered internships for young talent at the Tammam Atelier, a fantastic opportunity to support and nurture the next generation of creatives in a real life work environment.

Isabella turned up for an interview for a work placement at Atelier Tammam in October last year. Her beautiful portfolio of hand crafted textiles wowed me and her dedication to sustainability and the environment meant she was obviously a perfect fit for our team.

I asked Isabella to write a blog post about her time at Tammam, her words have made me so happy, as she so beautifully describes the environment I have strived to create at our unique fashion studio. I’m really sad she only has a month left with us and so grateful for all the hard work she has put in (and equally grateful that her visa was extended so she could stay on longer than we initially planned!).

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During my time at Atelier Tammam I have experienced a truly meaningful opportunity to work at an environmentally conscious couture atelier. Throughout my time at the atelier I have discovered the beauty and grace within the fashion industry.

This experience sincerely reinforced my belief that the fashion industry can change the world. Ethical fashion offers a resolution for the current affairs in environmentalism, stimulates the growth of a circular economy, and advocates for essential human rights. By transforming the conscious perception of how clothes are worn and seen and by embracing environmentally sound practices, it will naturally lead us towards a stronger and more globally cohesive future. At Atelier Tammam I have experienced first hand that there is a way to participate in the fashion industry by utilising morally and environmentally considerate principles whilst creating beautiful garments.

From the start of my internship, I have had an incredible, enriching experience. Each day presented chance to learn something new, and to first hand experience the diligent work necessary to create ethical couture. Atelier Tammam is a true advocate of clothing made through considered care. As I patiently learned each stitch, I found a loving sense of care for each garment. When an item is created through bespoke work, every pristine detail becomes relevant for the seamstress and the customer. I learned that even the smallest ornamental stitch would be considered, demonstrating the evident value the atelier places on the customer. This process gives one time to appreciate the true essence of each garment, and how its story will evolve as it passes through the hands of the customer.

I was truly in awe of the teaching methods found within the atelier. Everyone in the atelier was taught with patience. Each person working there regardless of their background, ethnicity or level of experience was given a chance to cultivate their own unique skill set. This demonstrated the devotion to diversity and it gave me the courage to learn new skills and aspire to a couture level. From the first week I learned the proper stitches for button loops, the tracing of bespoke patterns, to understanding how the cursive words on one dress are to be gracefully embroidered with a split stitch. In this supportive atmosphere I felt accepted with a sense of support and encouragement to further cultivate my skills.

By witnessing this hopeful model of slow fashion, I have been reminded of my love for the craft, as it brought to surface the reasons why I was drawn to fashion as a young girl. At the atelier there was always an ambitious project to take part in to meet production needs. Yet because of the business model that takes mindfulness and a positive work environment into consideration, everyone is so willing to participate. In this way each task has the chance of becoming a positive experience, and I believe this is why those who work at the atelier are willing to put passion into their work and reach to set new goals and heights in the fashion industry.

Throughout my internship I was inspired by the variety of projects and how there is always a new field to be immersed in and learn from. I felt a sense of reverence for the existing collections, as each piece had been contrived through beautiful ethical fabrics and designs that were intelligently rendered. The whole of the atelier captures classicism whilst embracing contemporary design, utilising revolutionary production methods.

Atelier Tammam is more than a fashion studio. It is an environment where like minded individuals who have a passion for environmentalism and human rights can come together. It is a refuge outside of the fast fashion industry that offers both a sense of solace and revolutionary ambitions where fashion is redefined. It reclaims its role as an art form that touches the lives of all and therefore responsibly takes into consideration the welfare of those involved in its fabrication, from those employed in its production to the resources used to produce it.

At the atelier I experienced a shared sense of sisterhood and team work. Every woman working at the atelier supported one another and was devoted to an external philanthropic cause. This sense of collaboration went beyond the atelier to a rendered sense of connection to the women working across the globe through fair-trade initiatives on shared projects such as One Dress. One Dress is a principle example of how the atelier strives to initiate global activism. It allowed me to tell a word of my own story while striving to share the project so women around the world can feel equally empowered.

It is hard to describe my experience at the atelier in words. It has shown me the power we have to pave in the fashion industry. Demonstrating through interdisciplinary collaborations we can all aspire to make a difference through ethical fashion. I am now confident that through strategies of cohesive co-creation and the business models presented at Atelier Tammam, stitch by stitch we can create the world that we aspire to live in. The future is in our hands.

 

Thank you so much Isabella, we’ll miss you at the Atelier and wish you so much luck with your future career.

 

Ms Tammam

2019 in the Atelier

Well the last of 2018 whizzed by in a whirlwind, and as we’re speeding towards February it seems a perfect time for an update…

Last week I was invited on to the Jo Good show on BBC Radio London.img_3221

What a treat to talk to the lovely Jo about ethical fashion and the One Dress project.

Just before the holidays we launched One Dress gift certificates – these make a delightful Valentines or birthday gift for a special woman, who might prefer to choose her own word, and can be bought via the website.

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Since we returned from our tour of Australia in the Summer the dress has kept up it’s wondrous wandering. Appearing at the Bloomsbury Festival in London, the FiLiA conference in Manchester, A fantastic women’s art showcase at Atelie397 in Sao Paulo, Brazil and has been added to by our very own apprentice Nivea, who now lives in Rio. It also made a guest appearance at the site of the WSPU headquarters in Holborn (now Bill’s!) for international day of the girl and to celebrate the birthday of legendary suffragette, Emily Wilding Davison, along with Kate Willoughby and PAWA.

 

The dress is currently on display in the window of Atelier Tammam in Bloomsbury – let us know with a tag on instagram or twitter (@HouseOfTammam) if you happen to pass by, perhaps you can spot your word through the glass! We’ll be setting off on our travels again soon, sign up to the mailing list to be the first to hear all our news and where you can see the dress next.

 

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It’s coming up to being about half way embroidered and I’m aiming for it to be completed by October, to be showcased as a finished piece at the fabulous feminist FiLiA Conference in Bradford – tickets are available now.

The register is available to view on line – all the wonderful words that have been lovingly embroidered on so far can be seen, along with the name of the person each is dedicated to and the amazingly skilled woman (from the UK, India, Kenya or Brazil) who stitched it on.

Yours in awe of the, often unrecognised, talents of women

Ms Tammam

For International Women’s day 2018

We’ve just returned from an incredible trip to Kenya, working with the wonderful women of SOKO to embroider more words on the phenomenal One Dress.

Violet Voices in Vintage and Reclaimed Threads on One Dress
One Dress in Kenya with Rosie, Clorinne, Lina, Priscilla and Tabitha

This month is International Women’s Day, Fair Trade Fortnight and Mother’s Day (if you’re still looking for that perfect, unique gift; dedicate a word on One Dress).

HeForShe Arts Week is asking for gender equality through the arts, FiLiA launches it’s new project FiLiArt100 asking female artists to submit their work on the theme of suffrage, emancipation and women’s rights and various events celebrating, discussing and empowering women are happening all around us.

 

At Atelier Tammam we have worked with so many incredible women throughout the years – here’s to them and their magnificent craftsmanship skills. Happy International Women’s day to everyone!

Yours in solidarity and sisterhood

Ms Tammam

Team Tammam Spring 2017

Well it’s been a while since my last Web Log. It has been an exhilarating time at the Atelier and the One Dress project has been all consuming, with a fabulous trip to India, two successful Crowdfunder campaigns and work in progress showcases here and abroad, since my last post.

I’m very excited to introduce the wonderful Nyleeta, who will be taking over the Web Log while she is on placement with us over the summer months.

Yours in Sustainability

Ms Tammam

 

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The latest batch of Tammam interns met for the first time at an iconic London retail location to get to know each other and gain some insight into the world of high end fashion before the hard work of the next few weeks begins.

Every season the atelier offers placements to both technical studio and administrative students, to offer them invaluable work experience within the fashion industry.

 

Meet the team.

Appa, the ambitious Norwegian studying pattern design in Denmark.

She has great attention for detail and loves an organised work space, she is used to using advanced technology to design and create patterns but here at atelier Tammam she is gaining knowledge of how to create traditional manual patterns for haute couture.

Here she is analysing the structure of a ball gown.

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I am Nyleeta, described by my colleagues as “the diligent Brit” studying Fashion Management and marketing in London. I have been tasked over the next few months to write this blog for Tammam, as well as work on some of our upcoming events.

On our expedition, I fell in love with this beautiful gown and wanted to purchase it but the price tag said no.

Nyleeta

Katherine, the adventurous country girl from Oregon, soon to be studying at the Fashion institute of technology in New York, is a meticulous seamstress eager to learn the tricks of the trade from Ms Tammam.

Katherine

Tina, the unassuming Italian/ Lebanese fashionista, is studying fashion management and marketing in London.

She has an abstract way of viewing the world and aims to bring innovative ways to market the boutique during her placement.

Tina

We gave ourselves the nickname, The Tammam Secret Agents because we spent the whole day looking at other designers gowns inside and out, as well as how they display them, and got many ideas to implement during our placements.

We all seemed to agree that the quality of the designer clothing we saw was not fair value for money and in comparison to the quality of the handmade gowns offered by atelier Tammam, there was no match.

I’m really excited for what the next few weeks have in store and I look forward to writing the next post.

love,

Nyleeta

 

Haute couture – can it save the world?

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My mantra has always been “Saving the world – in style” and you don’t get more stylish than Haute couture.

Paris has just hosted another Couture Fashion Week where the cream of fashion is showcased for the unutterably rich and insanely fashionable to lust over.

Couture is about craftsmanship. The word “couture” is the french for “sewing”, “Seam” or “dressmaking” (so cakes that are called “couture” are linguistically incorrect – unless they are stitched) and “haute” means “high” – in Paris couture is the highest of the high, in fact The “Chambre Syndicale de la Haute Couture” is a very small strict club for fashion designers that it is almost impossible to become a member of.

The reason is simple, true couture has to adhere to the highest standards of craftsmanship, production methods and materials. A genuine couture garment is in itself a work of art. Almost impossible to replicate precisely due to the amount of hand work that has gone into making it and often taking weeks or even months to be made. An ideal option for a wedding dress, if you are looking for something really special.

Unfortunately there is a dark side of couture, which many followers seem to turn a blind eye to. It is well known that many of the couture houses are great friends with fur (companies). I once told a complaining fur business owner “how do you think the fox felt” at a very luxury event and got shot down immediately (thankfully not in the same way as the fox….), obviously there is a LOT of money to be made from animal skins, and although there are waves of fur being en vogue OR totally unacceptable, there are always going to be people who want it – despite the supermodels’ best efforts….

Here is the mini “Karlito” by Fendi in mink, silver fox and goat fur. Its a totally pointless, unattractive, strange little bag charm, which not only doesn’t have any real use, it is also ensuring the murder of innocent animals.

Quite strange, but then couture often is, even when its divinely beautiful and incredibly crafted.

A Jean Paul Gaultier creation
 
Of course at Atelier Tammam you can rest assured that we won’t be using any dead animals, in fact we are an entirely vegan company with the exception of our peace silks, which come from empty cocoons, ensuring the moth is allowed to fly away (rather than getting boiled alive like in conventional silk production) and occasionally some vintage silks, if we are given them. We have never used any furs or leathers in our collections and have spent years developing alternatives to traditional animal fibre materials for our creations. We work to haute couture standards, using traditional craftsmanship, many skilled hands (always fair trade, often in India or Nepal to support communities there as well as in our London atelier) and the most luxurious of materials  – all sustainably sourced.
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Proof that cruelty free couture can be glorious too.
Here follows a roundup of my favourite pieces from the July 2014 couture shows (images from Vogue.co.uk)…
Elie Saab – no one does bling quite like it.
Dior – I don’t think there is anything on earth as wonderful as a beautifully tailored coat, buy a long one to cover up the high street tat you are wearing underneath, obvs
Chanel – An obvious “Frozen” influence this season, all primary school children are now saving their pocket money for one of  Karl’s “Elsa” capes…
Schiaparelli – one of my favourite ever designers – reincarnated. Unfortunately most of the collection was made of fur, but I do love a good bird print on an emaciated model with a tuft of tulle on her bonce.
Vionnet – original queen of the bias cut, the reinvented label goes hippy on us this season with this ying yang inspired gown.
Gaultier – angelic punk
Valentino – Shiny!
Versace – Bit of leg, lot of sparkle, fancy pleating of liquid like cloth…
Fancy investing in some couture? If you want to save the world at the same time, why not demand your couturier considers their supply chain, manages waste and opts out of using fur, or chose a couture label, like Tammam, who does that already.

 
Yours in haute couture
 
Mme Tammam