Interview: Georgia Fendley, Mulberry AW12

Earlier this month Mulberry released its AW12 campaign, shot by renowned British photographer Tim Walker in an English forest. The series is beautiful and evocative, playing on the romance and darkness of children’s fairytales. Georgia Fendley, Mulberry Brand Director – reflects on the collection and the season ahead.

BR: How did the collaboration with Tim Walker come about?

GF: This is our fourth season working with Tim, our first collaboration was the sponsorship of his short film, The Lost Explorer in 2010. Tim is such a pleasure to work with and such a natural fit for Mulberry, we love his ability to deliver a complex narrative in a single image and his Englishness, creativity and distinct point of view reflect our aesthetic perfectly.

BR: The campaign’s signature is the two giant furry, forest creatures that are entwined in the forest. How are the creatures symbolic of the AW12 Collection?

GF: Our Creative Director, Emma Hill was inspired by explorers, dark fairytales and mysterious creatures, exploring the blurred boundaries between fantasy and reality. As a result the AW12 collection was textural, rich and layered, the forest setting reflected this beautifully, the deep carpet of pine needles on the floor and the density of the trees created a very special mood reminiscent of a fairy tale. The creatures were created by Andy Hillman, a physical incarnation of a fairytale monster, ambiguous in intention, the idea is that you are not quite sure if they are friendly or a little predatory.

BR: Aside from being incredibly beautiful, what is it about Lindsey Wixson’s look that is so fitting for Mulberry?

GF: You are right, Lindsey is absolutely gorgeous, we also love that she is a strong character, super bright and brings her own approach and ideas to each shoot. This is the third time we have used Lindsey for a campaign and we love her doll-like face, her sense of fun and her confidence and energy, she is so expressive and we think this represents the Mulberry girl perfectly.

BR: Do you have a favourite piece from the AW12 collection?

GF: I have so many favourites – I’ve ordered the Maisie Clipper in black, the one with shearling sides and I have the Deer Brown Del Rey which I love – it’s such a practical bag, it’s like Dr Who’s tardis it looks so chic but fits my MacBook, spare shoes, colouring stuff for my kids, everything – no-one can believe what I manage to fit in it! I love the catwalk ready to wear, the outerwear is stunning and I love the tie-dye full skirt dress, we just saw a picture of Keira Knightly wearing it for an interview last week, she looked gorgeous.

BR: From your perspective in the company, in what way do you see the brand evolving over the next 5 years?

GF: This is a really exciting time for us, the brand is opening more stores in Europe, the US and Asia so the challenge will be to tell our story in these markets, making sure we express our uniquely English personality and our passion for craft and authenticity. We are also expanding our Somerset factory and will be opening another next year, continuing to champion Great British craft and manufacturing.

Photographer: Tim Walker

Model: Lindsey Wixson
Creative Director: Emma Hill
Brand Director: Georgia Fendley
Art Direction: Ronnie Cooke Newhouse and Stephen Wolstenholme at House and Holme
Set Design: Andy Hillman
Stylist: Jane How
Hair: Sam McKnight
Make-up: Val Garland

Text: Bethany Rex