That iconic HUNZA dress worn by Julia Roberts in Pretty Women, essentially led you to your dream career? It's such a wild story. Walk us through the day you met HUNZA's original founder Peter Meadows & how the re-brand came into conversation so soon! Was it all pure coincidence?
I had started making my own samples with some fabric I got hold of. I wore a dress I had made to a party and a someone said they knew Peter. They put me in touch with him the next day and we met in a cafe… I had my bag pf samples in a plastic Tesco bag and he had a look and said …. Go for it! Let’s try the crinkle again. You are clearly really passionate about it. I’ve already had my time with it but I will help you from a business point of view.
I began coming into the studio the next day.
One Size Fits All. Tell us why women need not fear the OSFA concept.
I think there is definitely a scary side to something claiming to be one size fits all…. However I always encourage everyone to try them on as we have never had someone turn around a say ‘Hey, I cant get into this’.
The normal reaction is one of extreme shock & happiness. HUNZA G will fit a size 18.
Self-esteem, self-confidence & self-love... HUNZA G has been vocal on topics of this nature. Is there something you're only discovering about your body now, that you wish you appreciated more years ago?
Yes… the classic… confidence is everything.
Looking after yourself too. I love exercising. Not because it makes my body change that much, but because it gives me a feeling of a mental happiness and just general well being. Internal happiness creates external happiness. The two go hand in hand.
You are London born & bred and you're conquering the world of swim. This is quite sublime (especially in the eyes of an Australian crowd!). In 5 or so words, describe London in summertime?
Unpredictable weather, pubs, festivals, sunburn, inappropriate dressing. I love London in the summer.
Lady Gaga, Shanina Shaik, Georgia May Jagger, Em Rata, Kim Kardashian, Rihanna, Rosie HW, Bella Hadid, Daisy Lowe ... is their someone you're just dying to see in HUNZA G?
I would love love love to see an older woman in one. Susan Sarandon would be a pretty cool person.
We all tend to think that black is flattering. Your entire rainbow range however is designed to perfectly hug & accentuate a woman's shape. How have you managed this?
The fabric is made on a circular loom, so its tubular. It has no seams. It takes your best shape and hides your lumps and bumps. I love the fact that it’s so inclusive and suits so many body types. The biggest misconception is the big knickers hide more area. Wearing baggy, saggy clothing does NOT make you look slimmer or sexier.
Swim that can be worn from the coast to cocktails is the dream. HUNZA G fits this brief to a T. Is versatility intentional or a a priority when you're designing?
My priority has always been that whatever the design, it must be functional too. I can’t bear swimwear that’s fussy or makes you feel that you couldn’t dive into a pool/the sea. That’s just not for me. I like the idea of it being sporty whilst translating into something sophisticated if that’s what you want.
When you're in complete design mode, walk us through your average weekday routine?
I plug in my headphones & listen to music. Quite often it’s classical. I tend to find something that start’s the whole design process. For the Northern Soul collection, I had been listening to a lot of music from that era. I then watched the film. I took my inspiration from images of 70’s disco’s in the North of England
Within the INC collection of swimwear designers - are there a few other labels that grab your eye?
Even though they are my competitors, I love love Solid & Striped. I think they are great. Stella McCartney does some great shapes and patterns too.
HUNZA G moving forward ... what direction will you take the brand?
I need to plug my earphones in and think about it!
If HUNGZA G was a she, which of the below would she choose?
Gin or Whiskey?
Made in Chelsea or Ab Fab?
Kanye or The Beatles?
It's 9.00am. Bloody Mary or an EBT?
Brunch with Middleton or Markle?
Spotify or Netflix?
An invite to The Met Gala or Burning Man?
Blush Pink or Fluro Yellow?
Silent Disco or a Jazzy Speakeasy?
If someone said "Come over for an arvo barbie & a ripper sesh. Bring your togs," Do you have any clue what they're asking you?
Not a clue… but I am going to try and translate…. bbq food and tonnes of drinking whilst wearing a bikini? Actually sounds quite fun - maybe I will ask some of my friends in London if they fancy it and see what they say… they might think I have gone mad.
BY TORI BOWMAN
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