To help potential customers understand and connect with the brand, we would like to share the “Personal Design Language” of the CONVERGENCE brand. This is a phrase used by Virgil Abloh in a presentation at Harvard University. It is a set of processes which define the way he works and can then be applied to any product or any task, to redesign something which represents Virgil and his aesthetic. To discover your own design language, Virgil advises:
“Go back to your earliest memories, or the way that you thought to organize, the way you thought to organize your closet, or what colours were your favourite. Back in that early rational, before you sort of learn too much, that’s when your DNA started.”
The CONVERGENCE design language represents the morals and aims of the brand. It has defined the work and projects throughout Lucy’s degree and early career as the founder of CONVERGENCE. These are the seven key processes she has settled upon:
#1 – Functional, adaptive, inclusive
#2 – A concern for people and their well-being
#3 – Applying a problem-solving mindset
#4 – Considerate of mental or physical disabilities
#5 – Promoting a positive, meaningful message which informs and unites
#6 – Intensive research to support visualising non-visual concepts
#7 – Digital approach and presentation
First and foremost, are three key words and attributes of the brand – functional, adaptive, inclusive. This is the foundation of the brand which separates CONVERGENCE from most other fashion/clothing brands. Functionality is important as it is fundamental to create garments which are fit for purpose. However, designing something inclusive for people who may have limited mobility, really requires the brand to consider how the garments will function, how comfortable they are, and how easy they are to get on and off. By considering different disabilities and their needs, the brand aims to produce inclusive collections which are available in both a seated posture, as well as the standard standing posture. The adaptability addresses the modular elements of some of the garments in the collection, which are used to create different styles and adapt to suit different needs. This is best illustrated by the Lauren Trench outfit from the Graduate collection which has been completely broken down into: body, sleeves, skirt, trouser and belt.
Secondly, it is part of the founding DNA to have a concern for people and their well-being. This means that it is very important to Lucy to produce clothing which is meaningful and has a positive impact on the world around her. Therefore, she uses a problem-solving mindset to consider everyday problems people may face and then translate this into suitable fitting garments which will solve these problems and improve well-being.
The birth of a close family member with Autism led Lucy to begin considering disabilities and how clothing can be designed with them in mind, and to raise awareness and knowledge among the public. This then developed into an exploration of design for disability within her Graduate collection, which will be explored more in depth as the CONVERGENCE brand grows.
There is a consistency within the design language, with point five reiterating the importance of promoting a positive and meaningful message using fashion. The overall message should be informative and unite people with the new understanding they have gained.