noun: apiary; plural noun: apiaries
a place where bees are kept; a collection of beehives.
Apiary! It's where bees live. Oh honey. But what's the buzz – how did the collection come to be(e)? And how many bad bee jokes can we squeez(zzzz)e in?
Take a seat with queen (bee) Shweta, our awesome in-house designer for No Nasties, to learn a bit more about this stinger of a collection (groan...)
Hi Shweta! How did you come up with the theme for this collection?
For this new line, I started off playing with a few concepts based on ideas from forecasting websites & inspiration boards. I got attached to the bee for multiple reasons: it was graphic, linear & modern, and at the same time, it had the familiarity of something we all associate with as kids. When I decided to add another print to the collection, the honeycomb was an obvious choice.
Tell us more about the prints? (Both are originals, developed in the No Nasties design studio!)
The creative process for any of our prints is always an evolving one - before I arrive at the final result there are many variations & combinations that the design goes through. Only once the key elements are finalised (in this case, the bee & the honeycomb) will I start playing with the scale, repeat & colour for the print.
In terms of deciding the exact details of the print, a lot of things come into play, for example:
1. Not being repetitive - the prints need to have a new look & feel in every collection to offer more to our customers.
2. The silhouette of the garments are a big deciding factor. The scale of the print and silhouette of the garment must complement each other.
3. Lastly and most importantly: being sustainable in production! The design must be feasible when going into print. Sometimes the chosen pattern & placement may look amazing in samples but if it does not translate well into production (where printing is done in the hundreds), I have to go back a step and rethink the design.
How did the new silhouettes take shape?
For the women's line, I generally don't repeat silhouettes. The No Nasties clothing line is only 3 collections old and there are so many silhouettes to play with when it comes to womenswear! I am still exploring & evolving our styles based on all the data we collect from our sales history and customer feedback. However, this time we are bringing back the Tunic dress, seen before in our Mineralistic collection because it did so well the first time and it is such a comfortable & forgiving silhouette.
For the guys we tend to stick with the classics, so here you will see a lot of repeated silhouettes. But for every collection we add new colours and play with some detail elements; like the elbow patch and colour blocking in the new men's shirt.
The Palmae Collection was designed with a summer cruise in mind – light, easy pieces for both sunshine and a sunset breeze. Was there a particular season or situation in mind when designing for Apiary?
Given that we are launching this collection in autumn/winter, the idea was to offer some layering options to our customer. Since our fabrics are all 100% organic cotton, and cotton doesn't allow you to make very warm clothing, I consciously designed this collection to have more coordinates this time.
The jacket for women, for example, is available in three different colours & fabrics and can be worn over tank tops or dresses as a layer for a cosy silhouette, or can be worn by itself as a crop jacket top for a lighter, cooler look.
Our brand new Raglan Hoodie for men is introduced in our favourite textured slub fabric and features a raglan armhole for a more comfortable fit. And with the slim cut body & sleeves, the hoodie can be worn by itself for some warmth, or makes a great inner layer to be worn under a warm winter jacket if needed.
How did you choose the colour palette for the new range?
Given that we work with stock fabric, I try to dig up colours that resonate with the No Nasties aesthetic and also reflect the mood of the season we are launching in, along with the design concept. So this time you will see colours of flora, like shades of green and blue, and some autumn hues like maroon & mustard as the highlight. The rest of the collection is classic and timeless with the No Nasties staple grey, navy and brown.
How was the production process for Apiary? You've been spending a lot of time at the factory in Kolkata!
Yes! While the trips can be extremely stressful as we hustle to push our production forward and get deliveries on time, it's always fun when I'm up in the printing room experimenting with print placements & colours for our collections.
There's also a lot to learn when I'm at the factory! Many a times, I imagine a print layout to be a certain way when I'm designing the collection, and learn that it's not possible to take it into production simply because it's not practical for larger quantities.
A great example of that is the Kaftan dress. It was supposed to have the large all-over bee print, but while they managed to print one trial sample for my photoshoot, the factory was having a hard time going into production as the silhouette was too wide for the screen.
There were two solutions: either put a joint in the back of the dress, or not have any print. The joint at the back didn't appeal to me as the kaftan silhouette looked cleaner without a seam, and even if I did compromise and add a seam, the bee print would never match at the seam, making it even more prominent. The end result was to take the print off the kaftan dress all together and launch it as a solid colour style.
Thanks so much Shweta!
Go check out the amazing Apiary Collection again now that you know all the heart & soul that's gone into it.
It's the bee's knees...!