The Desire for Nature

“We are going to need a genuine rethink about many areas of our lives. Our attitudes, our priorities, our compassion. What and how we consume. What we stand for and how we voice it.”

Edward Enninful Editor-in-Chief @britishvogue

The last 100 days have forced me to pare back, retreat, close down, focus. As we emerge from lockdown I have an overwhelming sense of apprehension. Being at home with my family all day, everyday, initially filled me with dread. I thought I needed my shopping trips, my lunch dates, my peace and quiet. In fact the only thing I have really missed is some time alone and hugs from my friends. Other than that the simplicity of our lives has been refreshing and in fact liberating.

I began to walk early in the morning through the countryside in Monmouthshire where I am lucky enough to live and my senses have been reawakened. My walk will be interrupted by the sound of the water gently rippling over the wet reeds. The fragrance of a plant as I brush its flowers drifts into my consciousness. But most of all I see pattern, colour and form everywhere I look. The bark of a tree is transformed for me into a new camo print. The delicate pink of a blackberry flower delivers a spark of inspiration for a new tie dye combination. The soft straw of the heads of the grass as it begins to seed is the most perfect neutral I have ever seen.

My working life has been about colour, pattern and form but I have never before felt such a strong connection to nature to provide the source. And I feel this all around me from the people I work with sharing a mood board on Bamboo fabrics to the @britishvogue post that caught my attention this morning.

In the article editor-in-Chief Edward Enninful talks about our desire to return to “normal”. He stresses that;

“Like many of you who I’ve spoken to or corresponded with over these past months, I share a sense that, actually, “normal” is what got us to this point in the first place. If we are going to evolve, to a place of greater fairness and safety for our planet and its people, our future cannot look exactly like our past.”

It is so important that thought makers like Enninful are pushing this agenda in our Industry. We have to rethink, to reset. Otherwise this time we’ve had to sit back and look at what is important to us and actually what we need, is lost. And the even greater fear is that if we don’t do something now the next challenge we face will be bigger and scarier.

We must look to nature to guide us. Not only does it give us the most incredible spectrum of colour to choose from, it gives us the natural colour combinations that work as well as the seasonality that necessitates the changing of our wardrobes. We need to fall back in step with the world around us. We must treasure and appreciate its riches. There is still room for fashion. It just doesn’t have to be fast and cheap.


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