By Chiara Spagnoli Gabardi
The creative mind of Anna Skodbo of Phannatiq never stops. The brand director and textile designer of this London-based label is constantly buzzing with ideas to create new sustainable clothing styles that glorify self-expression and transcend gender and sizing barriers.
These issues, as well as ethics in the fashion supply chain, are important to her. She translates her beliefs into outstanding garments that possess an urban character with a futuristic elegance.
In this exclusive interview, Anna shares her views on fashion, music and London life.
Have you always been interested in environmentalism?
Sustainability is a concept I have been aware of since childhood. I’ve always been conscious of the environment and our impact on it, so creating a brand that honoured this came very naturally to me. I picked up surfing in recent years and it has brought me closer to my understanding of environmentalism. I always try to incorporate new sustainable practices in my life and business wherever I can.
How does living in London inspire your designs?
London always inspired me and influenced my creativity. The shapes, the textures and the griminess that are all impossible to hide are all reflected in my designs and prints. What I love the most is that there is always something to look at in London. It’s usually the tiny details that are often overlooked that inspire me the most.
Why do you define your brand as cross-genre clothing?
Representation for everyone within fashion is very important to us as a brand. We make clothes to suit many body types and uses, encouraging inclusivity. We design clothes that can flatter an ever changing body, and create pieces that are can be wardrobe staples with a uniqueness.
Tell us a bit about how Phannatiq is an ethical label
We have a completely transparent supply chain. No part of our manufacturing process is hidden from our customer, which allows them to know exactly where their clothing is coming from and who made it. We work closely with suppliers and factories to ensure each garment can be traced. In fact, under every product description on our website is a button which our customer can click on to see an overview of the whole manufacturing and sourcing process. From our website, customers are able to see an in depth explanation, including pictures, of the factories.
I know music really inspires your creative process. Tell us a bit about that?
I use music as a form of escapism, so when I start designing I have a clear head. So music almost has the opposite effect, it clears the clutter from my brain so I can find new inspiration I may not have otherwise seen and taken in. In particular, the harp has been a part of my life since I was young, having played since I was 14. It’s a Celtic instrument and a lot more common in Edinburgh, where I grew up, so it brings me back to my childhood. I love the resonance of the instrument and it brings me relaxation every time I play. I play mostly traditional Scottish and Irish folk music and I particularly love Hebridean music. The tonality is so beautiful and folk gives such a beautiful insight into the soul of a culture.
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All images courtesy of the brand.
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