Meet Emma Hasselblad, she is a 25-year-old knitwear designer and a textile designer/artist. Educated at ESMOD Berlin from where she graduated with a BA Fashion Design in 2015. She grew up in Stockholm, Sweden and at the moment she is based in Malmö, south of Sweden, in a super small apartment with her partner and two cats.
Emma Hasselblad will present her collection at FASHIONCLASH Festival on Saturday July 2. You can get your ticket here.
When did you realise you wanted to be a fashion designer? How long have you been designing clothing?
I've always been a fan of colours and shapes and to be creative has always been important to me. I've been fascinated of clothes and style for as long as I can remember and how easy it is to change appearance with how you dress. I wanted to work with something that involves colours and handicraft so that's why I wanted to work with fashion, textile and knitwear. The handicraft is very important to me and all of my garments are hand knitted and made in my studio. I learned how to knit as a kid in school, but it was first when I was around 19 that I became obsessed and realised that it was something I wanted to do. I started knitting as a hobby and now it has become a larger part of my life which is super fun.
What are your main achievements in your career at this moment?
That has to be that I was one of finalist in Hempel award in march this year and that I got the opportunity to show my collection at China fashion week in Beijing. I'm so happy for that!! And also that I will start my master in textile this fall! I really like the school atmosphere, being surrounded by creative people with big dreams.
How would you define fashion?
For me it's all about creating a concept of clothes that I can stand behind. And as a designer it is possible to change trends and inspire to new thinking, which always will be my goal. For me fashion is art; the fashion that appeals to me is the more artistic fashion. Fashion for me is not something specific, it's something that is more floating, it's an opportunity for expression.
"With this collection I was working with beautification of the female body and I wanted to influence especially girls to take distance from the current beauty ideals."
There are so many creative people who inspire me, I can scroll in my Instagram feed forever and I never get tired of it. Love to cyberspace and all the cool people who hang there. I'm also inspired by colour combinations, mismatching colours, political activism, shapes from the nature, memories, feminism, the internet and handcrafted flea market finds.
What challenges did you face during the design process?
I have so many crazy ideas and for me the challenge is the time. I knit everything by hand, so that leads to a lot of working hours. The garments I make are usually pretty big and sculptural and that takes time. But I look at it in a positive way, the world needs more slow fashion. Slow fashion is a more personal way of fashion and a more sustainable way to live.
What do you want to communicate with your designs in general?
That my designs and creations are handcrafted. Everything is made by hand, I make my own fabric by knitting it. I don't make patterns very often, when I make a garment I just start knitting, sometimes by free hand and sometimes I follow a sketch. I think that's how i keep my creativity going, I'm not following too many rules. Before I start with a new project or collection I am researching on a topic and make sure it's something that's important to me and that it is something I feel that I can contribute with.
Can you tell us something about the project you will present at the FASHIONCLASH Festival?
The collection I will show at FASHIONCLASH is hand knitted by me in different techniques and materials. It's a colourful collection and I am inspired by the searching for the dreamworld in different ways. The dreamworld can symbolise an escape from today's beauty and body ideals and it can be unreal, unrealistic and perfect. I want to create a feeling of a magical, colourful and imaginary universe with my collection, free from todays beautification of the female body.
With this collection I was working with beautification of the female body and I wanted to influence especially girls to take distance from the current beauty ideals. The ideal of beauty today not only shows us how we should look, it also gives us a sense of how we shouldn't look. Media and the fashion industry is based on objectification of the female body and convey a view of women which means that the body and appearance is extremely important. I have chosen to show the image of beauty in the context of what is perceived as “girly”. I want to work with colours that appear to have a low status like pink to highlight what is interpreted by many as a typical “girly” look. Throughout history the word "girl" has been used, in some cases, to emphasize the woman's lack of full status (=less status than men). Let these aesthetics be as worth as anything else, GIRLPOWER ❤
Describe yourself in three words:
Hmm in three words it has to be: Creative Colourful Catlover :)
What’s a standard day for you?
Most of my days is pretty different but a typical standard day is: the cats want their breakfast, me and my boyfriend drink coffee, I continue working on a project while listening to a podcast, lunch, biking to my work so I can pay rent, at home again knitting, dinner, knitting, watch something maybe Girls while knitting. Something like that. :)
Vegan, vegetarian, healthy diet or any food will do?
I'm vegan, meat is made out of animals halloooo and I don't want my friends on a plate.
What’s your favourite song, food and movie/TV-show at the moment?
I've been having Breadandbutter by El Perrro Del Mar on repeat the last days. I just watched the last season of Girls and I love it! Especially when Shoshanna is in Tokyo.
What is your bad habit?
Can't stop knitting. :) and I'm a nail-biter. :/
Are you a people's person or a loner?
Both, I need to be alone to daydream and to work on my projects. I also need people around me. I love hanging out with my friends. ❤
Do you have a pet?
Yes, I have two cats from a cat shelter. They are the best and makes my everyday life shine.
What’s your favourite city?
Berlin!! I lived there for a couple of years and I also did my Bachelor in fashion design in Berlin. It's like the capital city of creativity and you are surrounded by open minded people from all over the world.
Are you going on holiday this year? If so, where are you going?
After I've participated at FASHIONCLASH I will go to Brussels and Antwerpen! I've never been there before so I'm looking forward to that adventure. I will also hang out at the Swedish countryside:)
What/Who do you miss the most when you are not at home?
Hehe my cats ofcourse!
For more information about Emma: http://emmahasselblad.com/contact.html