The story began whilst studying Fashion Design at the University of Central England. There shared love of draping onto the mannequin was the foundation of their creative spirit. There was never really any discussion about working together, it just naturally happened.
After graduating Matthew gained a master’s degree with distinction from the University of Westminster and John gained work experience at two prestigious fashion houses in London. Following this Matthew was awarded the Grand Prize of the jury at the festival de mode et de photography, Hyeres 2008. Returning the year later Cunnington & Sanderson presented their catwalk collection ‘Morning Weeds’. Other shows have included Milan Fashion Week, London and Most recently Paris Fashion Week. Other achievements also include exhibiting work in London,Paris, Milan, Barcelona and at the Villa Noailles in Hyeres.
In 2010 Cunnington & Sanderson were selected as finalists for the Mango Fashion Awards and in 2012 they were awarded the On|Off Land Rover Visionary Award in London.
Based in Yorkshire, Cunnington & Sanderson have found a perfect balance through collaborations with fabric mills, local manufacturers, teaching at local Universities and being inspired by the beautiful surroundings. Collections are always based on a narrative with each garment having an emotional symbolism and characteristic attached.
Silhouettes, detailing and craftsmanship are refined to portray specific emotions, evoking people’s imagination and to allow the wearer to express their own personal connection/style.
Currently working on their new collection where irregular draping and innovative cutting express an unusual sense of unbalance. Fabric and silhouettes are combined unexpectedly, creating garments that appear somewhere between object and garment.
Special meal is….
(C) – Christmas dinner, alongside the festivities and cheer that accompany it.
(S) – My favourite meal is home-made vegetable soup. The recipe has been passed down from generation to generation. Somehow the flavour tastes slightly different every time, but always taste’s delicious.
What triggers your creativity? Separate or together
(C) – The unknown, taking a piece of cloth and creasomething that did not exist earlier.
(S) – So many things. Each other, emotion, imagination, creativity creates creativity.
Outside from fashion, what is your unknown passion?
(C) – Gardening/horticulture is a past time that I love, something so raw, beautiful and fulfilling about it. Surrounding yourself with nature can have such a relaxing effect like nothing else. A garden can be contemplative space where any troubles can be forgotten.
(S) – Cross country running. The freedom.cun
(C) – Museums such as the Tate and the V&A
(S) – Place to relax is Richmond Park with acres of natural beauty and wildlife such as deer.
What Designer makes you nervous with excitement?
Comme des Garcons…..just so special
Any child toy or clothing that you keep in a special place…
(C) – My Nans wooden treasure chest made by her farther, where old photographs are stored for safe keeping and brought out on special occasions. It holds such great sentiment.
(S) – A large polygon crystal. It is proudly placed on my windowsill. When the sun shines, the reflections fill the room with hundreds of brightly coloured rainbows. It is truly magical.
Books or Films (name them and why)
(C) – The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. One of the first books I read that allowed my imagination to fly. As a reader I was with the characters on their adventure feeling every emotion.
(S) – The film ‘A single Man’ for its emotional mise-en-scène and beautiful soundtracks.
A perfect evening
Having dinner with friends that we have met on our travels
Your perfect future?
To continue to create and to share our work
Iconic women in fashion
Guinevere Van Seenus, Vivienne Westwood, Coco Chanel, Suzanne Von Aichinger, Diane Pernet, Erin O’Conner, Vivienne Westwood, Coco Chanel, Tilda Swinton to name just a few, all of which have had a significant influence on fashion as we know it.
(C) – A past collection inspired by my Nan’s handbag, entitled the handbags and the glad rags. An elderly lady begins to re-live moments from her life, whilst looking at old photographs letters/mementos found within her handbag.
(S) – The combined aroma of cigarettes, Chanel number 5 and hairspray.
Also looking at the garments from past collections and instantly recognising the characteristics and emotions that they still hold within.
When something has been created with passion, made with dedication, and worn and loved by another
Pictures of Lily Gatins by:
Special thanks to Somethingslast Studio