Undeniably innovative, Alexandra Louise Champion Hackett (A.L.C.H.) is an experimental men’s sportswear designer, pushing the boundaries and challenging the conventions traditionally associated with men’s clothing.
Based in Melbourne, Alexandra is ultimately about rule breaking. Her collections are resourceful and bold as she up-cycles and appropriates found articles into wearable formats, which as a result questions the line between art and fashion, demonstrating how the two are integral to one and other.
Her collection Shoplifters fully embraces this idea as Alexandra focuses on the notion of shoplifting and avoiding surveillance. Constructing fabrics and furs from security tags, text taken from in-store signage and a textile made from personalised A.L.C.H receipts (which are washable!), Alexandra explains that “The collection explores the concept of the store and questions the act of shopping, as well as the phenomena of consumerism, by exploiting objects and signage found during the act of perusing clothing in stores.” With fabrication being an essential component of her work, Alexandra’s collections present not only her skill and talent as a designer, but also new garment hybrids that remain practical. ‘Textiles’ used in the past for example have ranged from NASA space tape knitted in to a jumper, to banana peels which transformed into a bra! The skill required to create such garments not only takes patience, but also demonstrates the artistry required in formulating such intricate and imaginative designs. It is here that the line between art and fashion is drawn in to question as Alexandra’s work captures the interrelation of the two.
“The fashion industry is incredibly fast-paced, if you slow down and stop producing, people move on. You’ve always got to be at least one step ahead in the game.”
With such advanced designs, A.L.C.H is not about following trends. With up-cycling becoming ever more present within the fashion industry, Alexandra has found a niche in the market that differentiates her from other men’s sportswear designers. Her initiative to design in such a way is not only founded through the location and surroundings that inspire her, but also through her strong understanding of the industry. “The fashion industry is incredibly fast-paced,” she tells BRICKS, “if you slow down and stop producing, people move on. You’ve always got to be at least one step ahead in the game.” Whilst she sees the fashion industry in Melbourne as still relatively small, she explains, “I feel like there’s not that many opportunities here in Melbourne for practices that create products that don’t fit into a specific box. I prefer the notion of being internationally based, rather than being tied to a specific location.”
Fully embracing her brand and its development, Alexandra offers the fashion industry her art, her fashion and her integral component…unconventional fabrication.
From BRICKS Magazine, The Concrete Issue, 2014
Text by Rachel Macbeth