WOMEN WHO CREATE: NATASHA BOOTH WORKS WITH BIGGEST TALENTS FOR FASHION EAST
Natasha Booth is Project Manager at Fashion East which to the uninitiated, is a nonprofit talent incubator founded in 2000, that aims to seek out the next movers and shakers in fashion. Fashion East discover, develop, and showcase emerging designers, whilst setting the foundations required for a successful future in the industry. With Lulu Kennedy MBE as a mentor, Booth has emerged as a talent aficionado, nurturing the likes of Charles Jeffrey LOVERBOY, Claire Barrow, JW Anderson and Jonathan Saunders with the support of a prestigious panel.
Booth found herself a part of this niche six years ago, when her fixation for fashion imagery and seasonal shows, led her to pursue an internship at Fashion East. It was a sense of the familial – that is so unique to Fashion East – which encouraged Booth to progress with the brand. The community dynamic, teamed with its non-profiteer nature and sustainable ethics is what sets it apart, bringing about an altruistic edge, that sadly, is not a common entity within the fashion industry.
When we speak to Booth, she is quick to dispel the utopian myth which suggests that design freedom reigns supreme for brands. Rather, she emphasises that fashion is a business and designers have to consider an array of different factors when it comes to achieving commercial impact. Designers starting with Fashion East are eased into this reality, the team primarily cultivate creative freedom before introducing commercial aspects as their business grows to ensure longevity. The creative free-fall that is symptomatic of fashion post-graduates, is adopted and merged with business tools and professional advice to help designers navigate through challenging territory.
Fashion East shows are notoriously enchanting, and are often a stand-out at London Fashion Week. Booth’s contribution here is integral. It is her responsibility to preserve the aura, at every step from conception to deployment. From scouting to mentoring, marketing to production and funding management to sponsorship – her role is all encompassing. Booth’s repertoire of memorable moments includes working on special presentations for Meadham Kirchhoff’s menswear collection. And, when we asked her to share her top tips for emerging designers, she is quick to underline the importance of brand building through extensive research and first hand experience.
With the series Women Who Create, Material Magazine is looking to highlight women from a variety of professions and passions that use their unique talents to carve out a space for themselves and their art in our cultural landscape.
Photography CLARA NEBELING