PaisleyMake Design Festival

PaisleyMake is a new festival of creativity aiming to encouraging people to reconnect with  the heritage and explore the future of textiles and design, in the original home of the iconic Paisley pattern.  Last week I was invited to the blogger preview of the event, which involved a tour of the beautiful Paisley Museum and it’s huge extensive pattern archives within the fascinating environment of huge ancient weaving looms. In addition we had the opportunity to network with industry professionals and view exhibitions and participate in workshops from emerging Scottish fashion, jewellery and interior designers as part of Scotland Redesigned at Paisley Abbey. Finally, my favourite part, we attended an inspiring talk by former Glasgow student Penny Martin, editor-in-cheif of one of the industry’s most intellectual and informed women’s magazines, The Gentlewoman. I even sat next to her in the FROW! 

The festival, consisting of four days of workshops across Renfrewshire celebrating the history of textiles within the area, and encouraging people of all ages to get creative, is part of Paisley’s bid to become the UK City of Culture 2021. To find out more about this initiative, follow @Paisley2021 on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook, and explore the #Paisley2021 and #PaisleyMake hashtags. I’ve been involved with Scotland Redesigned projects before and love what they do for the Scottish fashion industry, so I was thrilled that they have partnered with the town, and exhibited their fantastic members to the public in a contemporary, shoppable environment, and even the talented bunch from design incubator Fashion Foundry took part!

Sometimes, opportunities come my way as a Scottish Blogger that I feel hesitant they will be a) relevant to my blog, and b) actually enjoyable/interesting to me as a person. Nobody likes wasting their time getting dolled up for a disappointing event that often involves a lot of travel. Sometimes though, I take a risk and it pays off (big time), in this case, it was an invitation to the blogger preview at Paisley Make. Never having travelled to the small town on the outskirts of Glasgow, and not being hugely interested in textile heritage, I didn’t expect much, but it turned out to be one of  the best networking events I’ve been to, and super inspirational career-wise too, which is timely considering I’ve just started a new university course and I’m getting involved in some exciting new projects,  so I’m feeling really amped up about my future in fashion! Stay tuned for a blog post all about The Gentlewoman soon!

Ruth @ Urbanity xxx
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Gucci Rip Off


London based designer Diane Goldie creates bespoke ‘wearable art‘ inspired by female empowerment and individuality. Her work, now three years in the making, consists of unique handmade or up cycled clothing and accessories in bright colours and textures; fusing a melting pot of cultures and personalities together,, creating what she thinks creativity in London is all about. I urge you to check out some of her work at, along with her intelligent and insightful writing at

Anyway, I divulge from what this post is really about. Gucci, one of the most successful high-end Italian fashion labels in history, has recently revamped their aesthetic, to a patchwork quilt of quirkiness and colour, inspired by London style tribes (see here). And Diane realised she’d been ripped off. 


Copywright law is a tricky one, especially for the arts. Most people wonder, where does creative inspiration end and plain old copying begin? Diane isn’t flattered. She is enraged. But that rage has only empowered her, not to sue the thieving fashion giants, but to protest and raise awareness of exploitation in the fashion industry and the cogs in the capitalist wheel of endless consumption. In her latest blog post  she says that:
“Because of course , besides there being virtually no protection of copyright in fashion, as a small fry, I’d have no hope in hell of suing the big boys…
We may be small fry, but there are LOTS of us. Lots of us , all singing together will make a BIG noise…This is about the tribe coming together and saying HELL NO, WE MATTER… So thank you Gucci. You’ve woken up the latent beast in me and vanquished the dragon Apathy. I’m ready. Are you?”

Diane is organising an exhibition during this year’s London Fashion Week, one to collaborate art, craft, fashion, politics, feminism and basically saying ‪#‎fuckfashion‬! She says: “After having my aesthetic stolen by high fashion status brand Gucci , as a small fry in this big , corrupt system, I cannot fight the usual way. Court is not an option. What I do have is my integrity, my supporters, and my creativity and rage. I intend to fuse this all into a protest art exhibition of large portraits of my friends wearing my artwork as a way of reclaiming my aesthetic.” There is a crowdfunding page to help Diane raise the funds needed to make this dream come true, so if you are feeling as angry as I am about independent artists being exploited, you can donate here!

One thing Diane told me that really hit home was that 
fashion requires women to be insecure in order to survive. We must have a problem, so that the industry can sell us a solution. 
Unfortunately this is true of all aesthetics-based businesses, particularly beauty and fitness. As much as I adore the world of fashion, to be blind to it’s problematic nature would be against my morals. 
I hope this article helps to raise awareness not only of Diane’s pursuit, but also of the need for strong, outspoken minds to call out the big players.
Got anything to add? I want your opinions and stories! Let’s start a movement!
Ruth @ Urbanity xxx

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