“Marietta’s Working Girl”
Nicola Rush is a womenswear designer based in Oxfordshire. Her final collection, called ‘Marietta’s Working Girl’ is an eveningwear collection that is due for release in 2022, is based on the work of Charles James and Claude Montana. Taking note of the elegance of the James’ work, and looking into the clients that he served, the muse of the collection is American socialite and political reporter, Marietta Tree. Marietta Tree showed that you could hold a prominent position in the workplace, while being a woman, in an era where the traditional role for women was in the home. Exploring women in the workplace, Nicola was heavily inspired by the 1988 film Working Girl, which explores the challenges and successes that women faced in the workplace. The film features the classic workwear attire of the time, including evidence of power dressing features oversized masculine styles on the female form, in particular large shoulders. Blending these topics together, ‘Marietta’s Working Girl’ features strong shoulders and tailored aspects of Working Girl and Claude Montana, and contrasting the masculine feel with more feminine lines of Charles James in the form of Corsetry and pleats. Sustainability is essential to any collection, and it has not been overlooked. All fabrics are either cotton or bamboo silk, and where possible, 100% cotton has been used, to minimise the number of synthetic materials present in the collection. This continues into the accessories, where inspiration has been taken from a vintage pearl necklace of Nicola’s mother’s, and sourcing vintage necklaces form the mid 20th century second hand online.