Uniting like-minded creators, Nasir Mazhar's Fantastic Toiles - a pop-up shop and collective - is officially set to turn SHOWstudio into the venue for their second drop of the year, which will see over 30 makers pitching their clothing rails in our studio to sell their latest wears. The pop-up will take place this weekend on 29 and 30 April at our London studio.
Not just another pop-up; there's an exciting undercurrent that pins the Fantastic Toiles crew in solidarity with one another. Frustrated by the industry's archaic yet favoured wholesale method, one that continuously lines the pockets of buyers, marketers and seemingly everyone other than the makers themselves, Mazhar decided to take his fashion future - and the fortunes of other emerging design talents - into his own hands.
Declaring enough is enough, Mazhar established Fantastic Toiles in 2019 to support independent designers and makers, affording them not just their rightfully earned money but additional time and space to grow their brands. The collective orchestrate as many as five pop-ups a year, all funded by those who take part, and thanks to the cleverly organised rotation of new makers and creators each time, all those involved participate on their own accord with no limit on what they can bring.
Described as 'a dressing up box filled with rare oddities', expect the unexpected, as the event will bring together independent creatives including Julie Verhoeven, Jawara Alleyne, Leo Carlton and Mazhar himself, who will be sharing a carefully curated selection of one-of-a-kind fashion pieces, zines, sculpture, homewares, artworks and accessories, all filled with the collective's signature idiosyncrasies, available to all.
Earlier this year, SHOWstudio and Nick Knight invited the designers of Fantastic Toiles to participate in a two-day live shoot. Highlighting the very best of the innovative concept store, the shoot captured the eclecticism and excitement at the heart of Mahzar's project. Marking the collective's introduction to the cinematic world, we will also be previewing a sneak peak of the resulting fashion film.
In anticipation of the two-day event, SHOWstudio invited Barcelona-based artist and illustrator Nicasio Torres to add his flair to the pop-up by creating an interactive mural punctuated with 90 one-of-a-kind works directly inspired by the DIY ethos underpinning the entire collective. Once a piece of artwork is bought, buyers will be encouraged to replace the newly empty space on the wall with a new work, pre-made by Torres. Slowly, these replacement works will build to reveal a painting of a face meaning the mural is predicted to gradually change as people add and subtract to it over time. The idea of this installation aligns with Fantastic Toiles' values which put community and the heart of everything they do and create. Instead of buying work and leaving; you're interacting, exploring, subtracting, adding and leaving your own distinct mark on an already distinct art piece.
Fantastic Toiles is open on 29-30 April from 11:00-19:00 at SHOWstudio 22D Ebury Street, SW1W 0LU.