Martina Spetlova uses the materials that other people throw away. “In high end fashion there is so much waste,” says the womenswear designer.

The label’s trademark lattice woven jackets are lined and turned inside out to expose impeccable facings and ribbon-piped open seams. A lot of work, and a lot of leather, goes into these jackets. “I have always been interested in sustainable fashion but obviously with leather it’s a little bit tricky,” she tells us. So, the designer works with Ecco tannery, using only bi-products and cutting pattern pieces with a CNC (Computer Numerical Control) machine that calculates where to place pattern pieces most economically, for minimum waste.

Spetlova spray paints, weaves and bonds leather to make a base, then from there her designs materialise. “I work on textiles and they inspire the design – I don’t draw”. She trained as a chemist in Prague before moving to London to study BA Fashion Print and MA Fashion at Central Saint Martins, graduating in 2011. “I experiment. That’s the way science influences my design.”

The approach obviously works, Martina Spetlova is stocked online at Farfetch, in Dover Street Market Ginza, Dell’oglio in Italy and Selfridges in London. The sustainable side of the brand is gathering more and more interest, being featured in Selfridge’s Material World project this season.

When Spetlova isn’t in her Dalston studio (accompanied by a curious cat who often tries to sneak in) she’s out and about in East London.

Monday: L’atelier Dalston (31 Stoke Newington Rd, N16 8DB) 

This coffee shop is just around the corner from my studio. It is super nice and has a great atmosphere. I mainly get a soya flat-white and banana cake. Sometimes I get lunch; they are very generous with their portions. The salmon and avocado toast is my favourite.

Tuesday: The Photographers’ Gallery (16-18 Ramillies St, W1F 1LW) 

When I’m in town I always pop in here. I went after the women’s march, and there was a feminist artist on show. It was like a day of feminism!

Wednesday: Dalston Curve Garden (13 Dalston Ln, E8 3DF) 

The curve garden is fantastic.  It is just by Dalston Junction, it has been there for four or five years. It used to be a no man’s land really, it was the back of a car park. They created a beautiful green space where you can go and have a picnic in the summer. In the evenings it’s so beautiful, they put tables in the space and have lots of fairy lights. You can buy wine and pizzas there.

Thursday: London Fields Yoga (Arthaus, 195 Richmond Rd, E8 3NJ) 

I do yoga every day from eight to nine, I go every morning. It’s amazing, you pay 45 pounds a month and you can go everyday five times a week. I basically get up and have to go straight away – there is no time to do anything else. I just concentrate on myself and my exercise and that sets me up for the day. I don’t check my phone before I go to yoga, if I do I’ll just think about that and then I don’t enjoy it. You just have to let go.

Friday: Close-Up Film Centre (97 Sclater St, E1 6HR) 

It’s a really small private cinema in Shoreditch. I think they have 30 seats or something. They show lots of black and white movies – I love black and white movies! They show low budget movies and big films too it’s just all very curated. There is a video store attached and they also have a café. Last time I went I saw 3 Women by Robert Altman.

Text by Abigail Southan

 

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