Fenny Faber

Fotografie: Brian Smeulders, Visagie & Haar: Irene Reijerse, Model: Katherien Broug.

Fenny Faber (27) designs clothes for the ambitious, working woman. Chic dresses in  geometrical shapes. Because  you can wear Fenny’s designs in so many ways, her group of admirers is very diverse. Fenny tells me her youngest client up to now was only 15 years old and the oldest was in her 80s.



Being creative

Fenny was born in Ede and spent her teenage years in Harderwijk. Her mother used to teach “textile crafts” on high schools, so when Fenny was only six years old, she was already working with her mother’s sewing machine. As a child, she knew she wanted to study arts, but she wasn’t sure what kind of art yet. A ballerina, a painter, a poet, as long as she could be creative. Around the age of eleven, she knew she wanted to become a fashion designer en finally she chose the Utrecht School of the Arts (HKU).

Fenny's atelier

 

Developing style

”I was only 17 when I started studying, so actually I just came out of puberty and hadn’t really found my own style yet. During my years at the HKU, my style went from one direction to another and only in my graduation collection, you can see the beginning of my style as it is now.” At Fenny’s website, you can see all her previous collections. Under the button “A/W 07/08” you can see her graduation collection and from there on all the collections that are made under the label “Fenny Faber”. Fenny tries not to follow trends and make timeless designs. In every collection, I recognise the geometrical shapes, femininity and colours like petrol and different shades of grey.

This year, the label Fenny Faber exists for five years and so the autumn/winter 2013/2014 collection will be a “best of” collection, with Fenny’s own favourites and with all the pieces that were most popular with the public. Some of the pieces copied almost literally, some of them made into completely new designs.
 

Grandma

After the best of collection, there will be a collection for which Fenny chose her grandmother a muse. Her grandmother actually studied fashion in the ‘30s and after her death, left a book with patterns and designs, which Fenny is going to use as an inspiration for the collection. On the wall, there is a picture of grandma’s bridal dress, which she made herself during the war. A light blue satin dress with long sleeves, a tight waist and a pleated skirt. She was in the cinema with her husband and before the movie started they could watch a Parisian fashion show on the screen. In that show, Fenny’s grandmother saw the dress she wanted to get married in and so she made it herself from fabrics that the workers’ cooperative kept especially for brides. Grandpa’s suit was bought from vouchers they had been saving. These stories, the book with the patterns and the memories Fenny has herself, will be the leading thread of the collection.

 

Good Polish quality

Fenny makes the samples for her designs by herself, on the sewing machine in her atelier. Mostly with the help of interns. “I like working with interns and passing some of my knowledge, something I probably got from my parents, who are both teachers.” Once the samples are made, Fenny sends them to a production atelier in Poland. The clothes used to be produced in Holland, but the quality from the Polish atelier is better. The working conditions in the Polish atelier are good, Fenny went by a few weeks ago to take a look.


Future

“I hope the label Fenny Faber will keep growing and will be available outside Holland too, someday. Whenever I’m in Berlin, one of my favourite cities, I always look around which stores would fit my label.” So maybe in the future we will also find Fenny Faber in Berlin. This fall you can find Fenny’s best pieces of the past 5 years at Puha Shop and later also the collection inspired by the work of a fashion student in the ‘30s!

 

Interview: Carmen Kloosterhuis