I found Amy He fairly recently through Chictopia and followed a link back to her blog. I really liked what I saw: her style is impeccably vintage inspired, not fussy and to top it all she is creative and has her own brand! So I thought she would be the perfect subject to start a feature I hope to have regularly, to help promote and spread the work of creative people. So I just sent her a note asking for permission for the feature and was happy to get a positive response back. So, without further ado, meet and greet Amy He of Mod Dolly.
At what age did you decide you wanted to be a fashion designer? Were you one of those kids that have always experimented with making clothes for their dolls?
I’ve always loved clothes and accessories, however it was only about 3 years ago I decided that I wanted to try and make it into the fashion industry. It was a risky decision because it still might not happen for me and I might not break through but I’m very optimistic!
My label ‘mod dolly’ was started last year but I only started to sell my debut collection this A/W. The whole brand is for girls who want to add a little more quirkiness into their wardrobes. I re-launched and renamed my blog this year to ‘DOLLS ARE UNITED!’ which is a blog about my journey with mod dolly and includes loads of new features like C&T Wednesday coffee and tea reviews, bloggers of the week, interior design, vintage and includes my style blog which I post regularly on lookbook and chictopia.
Which city are you originally from and what do like (or miss) about it that you don’t have in London?
I was actually born in Croydon in London but moved to the north with my mum when I was really young, so I grew up in Wigan, which is in the northwest of England. My dad is Chinese and my mum is English so I’m mixed race, unfortunately I don’t speak a single word of Chinese!
The only thing I miss about moving away from Wigan is friends and family but other than that there isn’t much in Wigan for me at this moment in time, London is definitely where I need to be if I’m to have any success in Fashion.
I simply love the capital city, its mix of people, cultures, and restaurants! There’s always something going on so it’s nearly impossible to get bored. It’s only at the end of the month when it becomes pretty boring and you’ve spend your monthly wage, that’s when London gets very expensive and my boyfriend and I just tend to go on walks along the embankment with a packed lunch and head to a free gallery or exhibition!
What are your main sources of inspiration?
I would usually say vintage but I suppose that’s very vague. I’m inspired by pretty things which tell a story, romance, silver screen movies, quirky and unusual prints and wallpaper. I basically just design around things that I like and just hope other people will like them too!
My last collection which was S/S 2011 was inspired by 60/70s retro prints, traditional silhouettes and worked around a rich and bright colour palette. Some of the colours that I used included were; ruby red, olive, mustard, teal, royal blue and salmon pink. I know autumn doesn’t really come to mind when you think of those colours but I just wanted to show people something fresh and different.
I’m currently designing my next collection for S/S 2012 and my inspirations are fairgrounds, Blackpool pier, candy pastel colours and embellishment!
It would definitely have to be 1950s Hollywood. I would absolutely love to travel back to the 1950s and early 60s. I adore silver screen movies and musicals set in those times, they’re just full of romantic and innocent story lines. I’m a true believer in old fashioned romance and those really were the times of sweethearts and chivalry!
If you had to pick a favourite item of clothing, which would it be? Is there anything you particularly collect?
I’m should be quite biased and say all my own designs are my favourite! So I guess dresses are my favourite item of clothing because that’s what I mainly design. Other dresses that I’m lusting over at the moment are ones by TBA, Dahlia, Darimeya and Sister Jane. I simply love their stuff and whenever I have a spare penny here and try to get one!
I used to collect china dolls and snow globes when I was young but those are up in my Mum’s attic, right now I simply just don’t have the space to collect anything. Although I suppose I collect clothes as it’s all I seem to buy these days, especially lovely vintage one offs.
Here is a selection of a few of my personal favourite items from Amy’s shop at Mod Dolly:
If you want to shop for these or any other styles at Mod Dolly, Amy was kind enough to give a 15% discount to Hello the Mushroom readers, just quote ‘mushroom’ at the checkout and happy shopping!
my shop- www.moddolly.com