Meet: Maki Miyauchi
Maki Miyauchi graduated from BA Fashion Design Womenswear at Central Saint Martins in 2002 and then a PG Certificate in Creative Pattern Cutting at London College of Fashion in 2008. After living in London for 20 years, and working as a pattern cutter for eight, she moved to Berlin to set up her own bridal wear label, La Sposa Berlinese.
“As I grew up in Japan, I watched my mother making my clothes. This fuelled a desire in me to be able to make garments myself. I have been hand-sewing every day since I was small and started using a sewing machine at twelve years old. My mother loved fashion and taught me about style and taste. When I was thinking about where I could study fashion at a world-class standard, doing a foundation course at LCF was an obvious choice for me to be able to learn technical skills. I was then offered a place on the BA Fashion Design Womenswear course at CSM, where I was pushed to think about fashion more conceptually.”
“Both my tutors and fellow students at UAL were among the most creative people I have ever met. On every project we worked our hardest to create dresses that were both beautiful and conceptual, and the student presentations were unfailingly phenomenal.”
“After graduating from CSM in 2002 I worked on some internships in London, which made me realise my interest in pattern cutting. In 2007 I went back to LCF to do a PGCert in Creative Pattern Cutting. I then worked as a pattern cutter for eight years for various LFW designers. After 21 years in London I was ready for a new challenge in Europe, so I moved to Berlin in early 2016 and set up my bridalwear label “La Sposa Berlinese”. The name means “the Berlin bride” in Italian. It is all about the carefree spirit of Berlin girls. I noticed a big shift in bridal wear trends in the last few years, and how the “boho bride” concept had been a huge hit. I found the idea of lighter wedding dresses in line with the fashion trend very exciting and noticed there was still a gap in the bridal wear market for romantic girls who love retro-inspired high fashion.”
“I moved to Berlin for cheaper rent and a slower pace of life but finding resources and overcoming the language barrier have been big challenges. I have taken an intensive language course for a year and a half and my German is now at upper intermediate level. Language aside, being my own boss means I must keep learning new skills and knowledge. It’s a never ending process.”
“I have a new collection theme that I am excited about and am looking forward to designing it. In the next few years I would like to exhibit at bridal fairs both for consumers and trade, and find more stockists.”