Less than a year after launching Obscure Couture in the bric-a-brac chaos of the Glasgow 'Barras' in 2010, Herriot Watt School of Textile and Design graduates, Jennifer Coyle and Lyndsay Pagan, sent models clad in their gritty street style pieces down the Emerging Designers catwalk at London Fashion week.
When fashionistas Jennifer and Lyndsay met at college in Galashiels ten years ago, they would never had guessed that their new found friendship would mark the beginning of a successful and creative enterprise. Yet, in 2011, nine years after they met, the team had not only launched their debut collection, Flesh and Bone, but had also experienced escalated success like no other.
The name 'Obscure Couture', which came about after a conversation between Jennifer and Lyndsay about morals, somewhat reflects the brands philosophy. The label is targeted at brave individuals who are not afraid to stand out from the rest of the crowd and who bravely express their values and opinions through their outfit choice.
Therefore, it was no surprise that the duos debut, A/W 2011 collection, Flesh and Bone, was inspired by both the harsh sexually explicitly punk style of the 1970s and the feminine elegance and beauty of the Victorian clothing and silhouette.
This daring collection landed the Obscure Couture girls a place as finalists at the Scottish Fashion Awards 2011 in the Young Designer of the Year category and a spot in the S/S Emerging designers catwalk at LFW.
The second collection by Obscure Couture wowed audiences at the LGN Events Emerging Designers event at LFW with it's brave combination of textures and sheer edge. The 'Us vs. Them', S/S 2012 collection was even gritter than the punky debut with its gang culture influences. The riot of clashing colours and textures from the heavy luxe sports style crop tops teamed with delicate chiffon skirts to the opposing MacLeod and Macpherson tartans evoked the concept on conflict within the collection, whilst maintaining the elegance that contributed to the popularity of Flesh and Bone.
After the Obscure Couture performance at LFW, it was only a matter of time before the duo were roped into another exciting project and, what better way to end a prosperous year than by dressing an X-Factor finalist. Both Jennifer and Lyndsay dressed the X-Factor winner Amelia Lilly in the last few weeks of the show and teamed up with Glasgow costume jewellery company, Bonnie Bling, to create custom made knuckle dusters as an addition to her outfit for the final.
Though, 2011 was a highly prosperous year for the relatively new label, I think that in 2012 Obscure Couture will leave the fringes of the fashion scene and break into the established fashion market.
The Obscure Coutrue girls, who are determined to continue to shock rather than get stuck in a rut, are making their 2012 catwalk debut at the London Fashion Week A La Mode event where they are to showcase yet another bold collection for A/W 2012-2013 called 'Lithium Party', which will explore the muddled mindset of a Lithium Party through the wide pupils of youth. Expect the biggest and most extravagant collection to date with clashes of fur, metallics, glitter and florals.
Photos by Laura McKinnon Photography