[COUTURE FASHION DESIGNER & NIDO RESIDENT]
Anastasia Andrew is in her 2nd year at Istituto Marangoni London, in the midst of starting-up a jewellery company and assistant to Addy Van Den Krommenacker, Dutch couture designer. We sat down with her to find out more about her entry into the fashion world and the trends that inspire her.
Born to a French Mother and English Father, Anastasia developed an interest in fashion from a young age.
“My Mother and French side of my family are very fashionable. I spent a lot of time in Paris seeing the trends and styles. I love the feminine Parisian style which comes out in my sketches and designs.”
Anastasia always envisioned herself becoming a stylist as she never thought her drawing skills were strong enough to become a designer. She grew-up comparing her sketches to that of her brother’s, a very good artist and now architect, which made her doubt her ability. It wasn’t until she was 17 that she believed her sketches would be good enough for a career in fashion.
During her first year at Istituto Marangoni London, Anastasia was introduced to Couture Fashion Designer, Addy Van Den Krommenacker through her boyfriend’s mother, Linda Weckstein. From there, Anastasia was offered an internship and spent two weeks in ‘s-Hertogenbosch, the Netherlands studying under the well-known designer.
“I spent my time working on designs, playing with different fabrics and working with Addy’s clients. My two weeks of work led-up to a Fashion Show in Holland where I was able to see the dresses I had worked-on on the catwalk. It was such an amazing feeling.”
Upon returning back to London, Anastasia decided that although her internship with Addy was over, she still wanted to help promote his brand. She took the initiative to scout out new clients for him, took design briefs on dresses and continued to send through sketches to Addy for design ideas.
“The internship was a turning point in my career and it was important to me to keep that relationship with Addy. Over the last year, I’ve worked hard to stay in contact so I can continue to learn and build my experience.”
Anastasia says that she owes a lot of her drive and ambition to her Grandfather. As owner of a large manufacturing company, Anastasia draws inspiration from seeing how hard he works and how much he loves his job. Her Grandfather’s hard work paid off in 2012 as he was honoured with a Queens Award.
When Anastasia’s not studying or designing couture dresses, the budding designer has started her own jewellery company. One major challenge she’s found when starting-up Anastasia Andrew Jewellery, is managing the commercial aspects of the business.
“I love the creative aspects of my company but recognise that the commercial side isn’t my strong point. This was a challenge when starting the process but I’ve managed to overcome this by finding the right contacts and people to help me. I realised that I couldn’t do everything myself so it was about asking for help.”
Her hand-crafted bracelets are custom made from English leather, shells and Swarovski crystals. We spoke to her about what inspired her designs.
“I draw a lot of design inspiration from nature. Fur and jewels are very much a reoccurring theme in my clothing and jewellery. I get inspiration from petal and flower colours for my dress designs and incorporate shells and stones into my bracelets to give them a chic and luxurious feel.”
Anastasia will be launching her jewellery website in the coming months but is taking orders for her custom designs now. She’ll also be in the Netherlands this month assisting Addy with another Fashion Show and hopes to co-design with him after university.
To see Anastasia's collection, visit www.anastasiaandrew.com