How do you think the Swedish School of Textiles has helped you and why did you choose to study there?
I have currently been studying at The Swedish School of Textiles for about six months now, as I was doing my BA at Steneby, School of Arts and Craft, University of Gothenburg. I mainly as chosen The Swedish School of Textiles for their amazing facilities and the possibles that comes with that. They have everything from full-knit to jacquard weaving machines. My educational background lays in both craft and in “pure” fashion orientation. I believe that these two paths have given me a unique approach to fashion. It helped me to understand that a technique or a material is not locked to a certain expression.
How was the artist residiceny in Johannesburg South Africa and the Basic Reality show project
It was a great experience to have the possibility to work on location interpreting local cultural issues. It Also to further understand that cultural expression in different part of the world are in some ways very closely linked. I was collaborating with the amazing South African Cuss creative collective that I first hooked up with a few years ago in London.
How much do you think that the current global melting pot of cultures through music, fashion and film has affected your work as a designer?
I have come to learn that culture is a complex thing and believe that the meeting of cultural expression is the only way of the future. In my current work I’m interested in investigating the possibilities of shape and abstraction as a uniting factor as an approach to cultural and social expressions. I believe in the subtle characteristics of form, one don’t always have to literal to communicate.
How do you go about sourcing the material and knowing and finding exactly what you want?
The finding of the “right” fabrics are very linked to my design process. It is the process of translating thoughts to a visual language, the search for the right expression. After sourcing in fabric shops or online I often treat my fabrics in different ways. That can be such as dyeing, felting or working with different finishes. Because of the wide range in the facilities at my school I can even weave my own fabrics, that then can be treated ans so on.
What is your favourite part of creating a collection?
Definitely from concept to realizing, nothing beats the power of making!
Roughly how long does it take you to finish a piece?
It is very different deepening on the construction of the piece. Everything from a few days to a many weeks, not including research time.
What’s the best advice you have ever been given about persuing a career in fashion design?
I think it is as simple as believing in yourself and don’t give up. The mentality to have is, if other people can do it why can’t I?. Also the importance of being able to handle harsh critique. Is is very hard to deal with at the moment of hearing it, but will only makes you stronger in the long run. To be wise and take the advice of people that dare to tell you the truth.
Are there any fashion designers or labels you would like to collaborate with?
I’m very interested in collaborating with people that is able to bring something new, think outside the box and challenge to current fashion agenda. I love to collaborate people that I am impressed and inspired by. I’m soon going back to Johannesburg for some more possible collaboration with the guys from Cuss.
What do you think the future of fashion is?
I hope the future fashion climate is able to slow down and that the value of craftsmanship in fashion plays a more important role than selling figures.
Where would you like to see Mina Lundgren in 5 years time?
I will be starting up my own label and have developed a clear vision of fashion and my relationship with the industry.
Interview by Von Von Lamunu