How did Bruta come about?
I used to have a business that supplied high street stores with fast fashion and at the same time I was putting on art shows around London. I decided to bring those two worlds together and build a brand that I was proud of and that was in line with the art I was showing. The name Bruta means different things in different Romantic languages – crazy, stupid, ugly. I also like the design of the word, phonetically it’s a exciting name.
What is it about shirts that you were drawn to?
I have a big collection of shirts and it is what I have always worn. Shirts are a classic staple in both men’s and women’s wardrobes. It seemed like a good place to start! The shirt is a relaxed, slouchy, and loose fitting. I wanted the shirts to be casual and easy to wear everyday.
You had no formal fashion training, how has your experience been of moving into the industry?
Designing and creating the collection isn’t that different from painting. However there is a whole logistical side which I have had to learn quickly. Designing a collection is only the tip of the iceberg – there is so much behind the scenes that you need to master if you want to survive!
You make shirts and pots, what unites the two surfaces?
The pots are more liberated as they are all one-off and hand painted where with the shirts you have to take in to account manufacturing, costs etc. When designing the shirts I need to be more pragmatic.
In general what are you influenced by? And how do you translate this into your designs?
Your latest collections were based around a trip to Italy – where did you visit and what were you inspired by?
I have been to nearly everywhere it Italy – whenever we have a moment free my girlfriend and I will rent a car and drive through a different area of Italy. It is such a beautiful, dramatic country. The collection is inspired by everything Italian from The Medici family to spaghetti pomodoro.
Where would you like to take Bruta over the rest of 2016, and beyond?
We want to build the collection into other categories other than shirts, but we don’t want to limit ourselves to just clothing. We want to develop more homewares and Bruta artefacts as well.