MilliOnAir Magazine September 2017 | Page 21

"I got some of my M.A. collection in a shop and that’s how I got into it"

Sini Moilanen

words by Ross Pollard

It's a sunny afternoon in busy and bustling Piccadilly and across the table from me Finnish designer Sini Moilanen has just been typically understated in her description of how she founded her label Tramp In Disguise.

Over the course of our conversation she'll tell me about how travelling to the UK from Finland led via Brighton to the RCA and her first footsteps as a label owner and designer. In her modest way she'll tell me about her time at the RCA which was the same period as other amazing talents such as Caitlin Charles-Jones & Emma Shipley, and riding the bus from Peckham to classes with Sophia Webster. .Sini holds a place alongside any of London's best independent designers even if for a while it wasn't quite meant to be . . .

"I originally applied to do biology. I've always been interested in nature, so I think quite a lot of my themes for my collections are inspired by nature, so I guess that’s something I combine with my own interests".

"I tend to have similar silhouettes but each time I do a new collection I take a bit of the inspiration and adapt it as well as creating the prints. I want to adapt the details". Perhaps the source of the ability Moilanen has to create unique perfection is that she not only has different perspectives but is also the force behind everything, From the thread to the web page she is doing it all in her own way, and thankfully that allows her to take ideas from locations maybe others would miss.

"It starts from something I've seen, so the latest collection was quite led by watching documentary films including Before The Flood & Racing Extinction . . . these documentaries are about global warming, the seas and extinctions which is why I started looking into it and doing research",

There is a very individual ethos to her work, and you can see an example of this in the latest collection Asterias. The tight silhouettes play alongside block colours of the fabrics aquatic palettes mixing with prints created from sea-life and the world beneath the waves. Deeper darker moments are cut and lifted by starring alongside the flashing colours and playful drawings of the creatures from below.

And of course there are her signature shorter cut dresses which are synonymous with the label, "I think I always wear mini's myself so I think everyone will". Given there beautiful look more people should flock to get them. When I first ever met Sini on a freezing night in East London for a press day she'd had two labels, the other, My Galavant has gradually merged with Tramp In Disguise, taking the excellence of both brands and creating a sense of the dynamic in her new purpose.

There are many poems and songs about the strength and beauty of two becoming one, and there is a deep beauty in the combinations this talented designer has brought in that merging. It takes a clever mind and a keen eye to do this and create the super label, a task achieved with aplomb. Sini may no longer travel with her text books on the bus but I can't wait to see what other stops and destinations are planned in this journey.


Tramp in Disguise