ateliertammam

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

Tag: women

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

FiLiArt

For the last few years I’ve been part of an incredible women’s rights charity, FiLiA (formerly Feminism in London). I am now their art curator and have been working away at putting on our biggest art show yet, next weekend 14th & 15th October, as part of the annual FiLiA conference.

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My recent explorations into textiles art, including One Dress are largely thanks to my involvement with FiLiArt.

This years show will be massive, with over 130 women artists showcasing work, an exhibition with paintings, photography, textiles mixed media and installations, curated rooms and performances.

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Just a few of the pieces available to view at FiLiArt 2017

 

The main exhibition will be open to the pubic both days of the event, with additional works available to view for conference ticket holders. Buy tickets here.

I hope to see you there!

Yours in sisterhood

Ms T

One Dress

Where did the summer go?  The Atelier has been in a flurry of excitement for the past few weeks, working on a new project that will be launched at the FiLiArt show (which I’ve been joyfully co-curating) in December, .

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One Dress is a textiles art piece, symbolic of women’s voices – A single dress to be embroidered fully both in the UK and at fair trade units in India and Africa with words of equality and solidarity, chosen by people from around the world.

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The initial project is now 50% funded thanks to Arts Council UK. Be one of the very first to choose a word or sentence for the dress and support some positivity!

Read more in my latest weblog for Huffington Post.

But that’s not all! In order to counter Black Friday madness we’re holding a little, calm and conscious, soirée to open our festive pop-up shop of indie brands and eco designers. Get tickets here (includes mulled wine). The pop-up will be open until the 12th December, and new stock will be added throughout the sale. We’re promising perfect presents and glamorous party gowns from the best sustainable designers around.xmas.png

 

Yours in One Dress

Ms Tammam

 

Fashion and Feminism

I love that the suffragette movement used colours to represent their cause – Green (Give), White (Women), Violet (Vote). Maybe I’ll bring it back for Fair Trade and make my next collection entirely in Fuchsia and Teal.

Feminism is on our minds, with the release of the Suffragette film this week, and the Feminism in London conference at the end of the month. As a designer whose art is made to be worn by women, I often wonder how the frivolous world of fashion can be considered in any way feminist. Rife with disadvantages for women – from body image issues, to enforced labour, to over-sexualised ad campaigns, to the fact that despite being seen as a “female” profession it’s still easier for men to “make it” with all the top design jobs frequently assigned to men.

Can I do more to promote the cause of feminism through my work? And not in a crazy Karl Lagerfeld / Chanel placards on the catwalk kind of way. Of course the entire Tammam supply chain is fair trade and many aspects are crafted by women artisans given equal pay to their male counterparts. Some women we work with have been rescued from hardships such as trafficking and prostitution and offered training and employment in the fashion industry.

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My work has focused not only on aesthetics but also offering skills and opportunities to craftspeople in developing countries. When I had a training studio in Bangalore I worked with girls from slum communities and trained them in couture stitching techniques. Pieces like the Peacock dress represent hundreds of hours of skilled delicate work, with each “feather” appliquéd on by hand.

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I carefully construct each design to be flattering to a woman, allowing women to feel confident and comfortable is surely key to offering them equality. And who cares if its a girly tulle skirt covered in flowers, or the tight support of a corset helps you hold your back straight and your chin up. Empowerment doesn’t have to be reserved for pinstripe suits, we are way past feminist stereotypes, remember…

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You can see a selection of hand crafted Tammam couture gowns at Feminism in London on the 24-25 October, as well as get involved in an incredible array of workshops and discussions around feminism, in all its facets.

Yours in third-wave, shaved legs, big dress, feminism

Ms Tammam

*This web log is also available on Huffington Post