I HONESTLY THINK September 2014 - Page 5

I had gotten and kind of do a print from that - but I got one since!’ Natalie said this as she pointed at her wedding finger, laughing.

I had actually met her husband, a graphic design lecturer, a few days earlier at the first interview attempt when Natalie was otherwise engaged at Selfridges. I wanted to find out what kind of influence he, as a more technically focused designer, had on her work. ‘We are kind of separate although we’re married and everything – I’ve lived in New York and Iceland and different places, it’s only now that we are living in the same place. He’s great to talk to because he understands things from the design perspective – he’s a different species to talk to so its kind of interesting to get that man’s point of view.’ Although from the small smile creeping into the corners of her mouth I gathered that Natalie usually only took his advice out of politeness, she has a clear vision for her label which she launched in 2011.

‘Basically I want to make clothes that you can wear, you can get up in the morning and if you had a night like me last night,’ we both laughed heartily at this comment as we could tell her hangover would no doubt be kicking in soon. ‘You can just put something on and feel good and not have to think about it. People look at you and go ‘It’s good but not too much’ but there’s still something interesting.’

She tells me that the NatalieBColeman woman is understated, cool and confident but this hasn’t stopped the like of Rihanna and Marina and the Diamonds from ordering her pieces or from her clothes attracting media attention. ‘I was at home in the countryside in Ireland and I started getting all these things about this guy on twitter called Rick Ross?’ Stares at me quizzically as if she isn’t even saying the right name, she shrugs and says: ‘I hadn’t even heard of him but this girl was singing in his video and it was number one in America and she was wearing one of my pieces in it – I had sold some stuff to a shop in LA and a stylist had picked it up there.’ Although this is great news for the brands, Natalie admits that she doesn’t seek out celebrity attention. ‘I don’t really care too much I just prefer people who come and make a purchase and wear it because they love it.'

However, when we moved onto the more lighthearted topic of who would she have lunch with living or dead, she seemed to care a little more about celebrities than she had originally let on. ‘Dolly Parton – I just love Dolly Parton! I went to see her when I was in Radio City in New York. I just love her she is so funny- so camp!’ Her face lit up as she told me all about the show and her time in New York, but it was her years spent living in Iceland that seemed to hold the fondest memories for her. ‘I’ve been over and back to Iceland quite a bit, I love it. I was working for a textile designer there before

so I have a lot of friends over there and I try to make it over there as much as possible. It’s really beautiful, it’s like being on the moon!’

And what about her time here in London ‘Well, I always show in Paris but it’s been really nice to be here and I have met some nice buyers and nice press and been to some good parties! Hopefully next year I might do runway.’ Looking over at her vibrant Be Still My Beating Heart collection in the corner of the showroom, I can already sense that there is no might about it. The catwalk is the right place for Natalie’s designs, designs that are so full of fun, colour and energy.

‘I love the way clothes can transport you. A dress can make you feel better, you know when you feel rubbish and really crap but you can put on a dress to make you feel really fabulous it just uplifts the mood – that’s what I like.’ Natalie herself would no doubt be throwing on a dress very soon – she had a drinks thing with fellow designer Una Burke to rush off to after we were done – but not before she explained to me where her love of fashion came from.

‘I have always been a bit of a dreamer. I always liked drawing and loved clothes. I mean I know everyone probably says it but growing up you have this fantasy. Watching your mum or your granny or hiding in the wardrobe feeling all these beautiful fabrics.’

And if you would like to see more of Natalie Coleman’s beautiful fabrics please head to www.nataliebcoleman.com

WRITTEN BY JESSICA MONTGOMERY

PHOTOGRAPHY: JENNIFER JUKES