“PROPS” ARE SMALL OBJECTS THAT CAN BE WORN OR USED TO DECORATE, OR ACCOMPANY THE PHOTOSHOOTS OF FASHION EDITORIALS. FRED BUTLER IS ONE OF BRITAIN’S MOST FAMOUS PROPS DESIGNERS.
Immediately after finishing her fashion studies, Fred Butler worked as an internship with the famous team of designers ThreeAsFOUR. Being part of their team she learned a great deal about styling and realized that she could handle the design of accessories as well as props. Today she successfully designs her own sets of accessories and has worked with magazines such as Dazed & Confused, iD, Qvest and even the American and Greek Vogue for the design and construction of props. We asked her about inspiration, trends and the people that drive fashion.
Are you inspired by what you see on the streets? Yes, for two reasons; Random people on the street who actually have no idea of their own bizarre style. Quite often I see someone who has clearly no fashion awareness but their own quirk in the way the outfit has been put together is fascinating. I find it charming and intriguing the way individuals choose items to go together. For example I saw a young guy going to work with a football shirt, knitted scarf and leopard print cowboy hat! But I also like to see strange and accidental constructions and patterns in everyday situations. For example I saw a cargo truck that had knotted its ties in a beautiful shaped bows.
What is the most recent trend in fashion, as you see it? I think there is a blurring of men and women’s style. The two genders are getting closer again like the androgyny of the 1990’s. I think there is a general 90’s revival with fashion going grunge in one direction and r’n’b in the other. I hated the 90’s at the time so Im not excited about the come back!
Who do you admire most in the fashion world? True innovators with passion! Diane Pernet for pioneering fashion reportage through blogging. Nick Knight for shifting fashion off the pages into moving film on SHOWstudio. Anna Piaggi for her conviction in wearing insane clothes quite naturally. Peter Phillips for being an artist, incidentally with make up. Soren Back for turning his hair styling into Millinery. Simon Foxton for breaking the mould with styling and casting menswear. ThreeAsFOUR for their genius in pattern cutting and approach to being “designers”.
What magazines do you read? Every single magazine I can get my hands on! I am addicted to finding a new issue and seeing who has done what! Each magazine is so different; you have to look at them all. But I am a loyal buyer of i-D. It was my first style bible and I can’t