"When love and skill work together, expect a masterpiece" — John Ruskin
"Don't make something unless it is both necessary and useful; but if it is both necessary and useful, don't hesitate to make it beautiful." — Shaker Philosophy*
"At the risk of over simplifying it … what I really do is offer a service to our customers" says HIGH's British born designer, Claire Campbell. A massive understatement that none-the-less accords with Campbell's belief that clothes should first and foremost be useful, of good quality and well designed as well as beautiful, comfortable, flattering and fun to wear.
This intention to combine utility and quality with beauty is rare in an industry frequently driven by a desire for novelty. It is just one of the features that set this leading talent of contemporary clothing apart from her peers. Another point of difference is Campbell's concern with the longevity of the product. There is the same interest in the durability, use and construction of a garment as in its design. Equally unusual is Campbell's ability to design in 360 degrees, working more like an architect or sculptor than a fashion designer.
"I work in a very three-dimensional way; the back, profile and inside of a garment is just as important as the front". This is an aspect of the ‘Everyday Couture' concept developed by Campbell while creating ready to wear clothing with a finish and attention to detail more often associated with the couture garment making process - one which requires working completely in the round. Throughout her career as a designer, Campbell has studied historical costume and textiles, often with an emphasis on work-wear and utility clothing. This has been accompanied by constant enquiry into the latest fabric technology and manufacturing techniques. This dualistic approach to design is integral to the HIGH label.
Claire Campbell does more than design clothes; she has created a whole new approach to clothing production. Each piece is designed with what Campbell calls an ‘integrity of make' - an attitude that combines respect for traditional craftsmanship with a desire to make it relevant to modern life and an understanding that looking and feeling good is essential to the customers sense of well being.
The results of this creative and technical alchemy are seen in every HIGH collection. Each item of clothing and accessory carries Claire Campbell's unique signature.
These have been collected, worn and loved by a growing number HIGH customers worldwide, who return season after season to find clothes that are necessary, useful and also very beautiful.
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