Tanya Ling of Veryta, chosen by Stefano Pilati at Yves Saint Laurent
Tell us about your past year, things seem to have steamrollered for you recently
The opportunity to work with Filippo Binaghi and Stefano Pilati on the Veryta project was a bolt from the blue. Filippo had been introduced to me by Peter Copping when Peter was at Louis Vuitton. I visited Filippo’s factory and we became friends, and later I met Stefano and the production of the collection was soon underway – it was a very organic process.
What was it that first inspired you to work in womenswear?
Ever since I can remember I have been designing womenswear by making drawings. I think the inspiration came during a trip to Paris at the age of 8. My parents and grandparents took me to see the greatest painting in the world (The Mona Lisa) and the greatest building (The Palace of Versailles) – which was where I uncovered the world of Marie Antoinette. Soon after, I discovered Coco Chanel, Yves Saint Laurent and Else Schiaparelli.
Who, from the world of fashion, has influenced you most?
My peer group at Central St Martins – Peter Copping, April Crichton and John Ray – is an important touchstone. Other influences have come predominantly from the Art World - John Currin, Gavin Turk, Georgie Hopton, Gary Hume and my husband William.
Your work has been described as innately feminine and ephemeral – is this a primary concern in the design process?
I work almost entirely intuitively. Drawing and painting is where the process starts. I’m female and I’m interested in female beauty so for my work to be described as innately feminine is not surprising.
Describe the British fashion industry in a word
Creative.
Who has afforded you the most inter-industry support thus far?
Stefano Pilati and Lisa Armstrong.
As an Italian brand, why did you choose to show in London?
I am based in London and I see London as one of the most important cultural centres. I have many supporters here so it kind of made sense for me to stay.