#tbt | meiling; creatures of the night
*warning! personal post ahead*
So, a few of you have been wondering what I’ve been up to lately.
After a month-long sojourn in London and Paris, I have been creatively renewed. There is just something about the atmosphere, and one’s proximity to art – in both a physical and metaphorical sense – that is simply inspiring.
And so I returned to Trinidad anew; refreshed, revitalized and ready to put my creative talents to use!
Life is a funny thing.
A few years ago, I did my undergraduate thesis on the Trinidadian fashion industry. I was fortunate enough to interview local designers on their perceptions of the industry.
Of these interviewees were the uber decorated and renowned fashion designer Meiling, and Sanian Lewis of the accessories brand Sanianitos.
Flash forward three years, and here I am able to work with these creatives, not only on an individual level but also [and maybe more importantly] on a brand level.
I have shared with both how excited I am to be able to collaborate and contribute to their brands, albeit in any minuscule way. Also, I have communicated just how grateful I am to be given somewhat of an insider view of their creative processes -which for some creatives can admittedly be sacred.
It is thrilling as a marketer to view and analyze brands – to see them develop; their similarities, their differences, their strengths, and even their weaknesses.
Meiling’s is quite established. She has been doing this for over four decades [!!] which is quite a testament to her resilience, and ability to remain relevant, weathering changing business and social trends.
Sanianitos, on the other hand, is a newer brand.
And so, I see a lot of opportunities for the two to benefit from each other. Sanianitos can help freshen the Meiling brand, and in turn, Meiling can help elevate Sanian’s.
Anyway! I ramble…
Upon returning to Trinidad, the first order of business: Meiling’s new collection.
Creatures of the Night
Entitled “Creatures of the Night,” Meiling said she was inspired by the sounds outside her window as she lay in bed each night.
Crickets, frogs and other buzzy little tropical insects served as the starting point. This was then expanded to include how vibrantly-colored Caribbean flora look shrouded in the darkness of the evening.
There are levels to this ish!
A master craftswoman, Meiling interpreted her stimuli to produce easily wearable, fun and flirty looks that incorporated her many refined techniques.
Sheer fabrics layered over sequins – to give the effect of iridescent insect shells, layered beaded corsets – to mimic reptilian patterns, and little insectile touches on classic Meiling silhouettes, all done in deeply rich and textured colors like burgundy and burnt orange added to the moodiness of the collection.
And of course, a fun Sanianitos collab led to the inclusion of seven pairs of bug-eyed, hand-painted sunglasses.
“The night is dark and full of terrors…” but this doesn’t mean it can’t inspire some fabulous looking garments.
As usual, I’ll let the clothes do the talking!
mod; Fariel Ali Khan | photo; JLH Perspectivs
mod; Bella, Fariel, Iyepha, Monique, Sacha, Sanian & Tamara |
makeup; Paulla de Souza | photo; Matthew Creese