Interview with Sarah Cake, Designer for Hell Bunny & Spin Doctor!

This is an idea I’ve been toying with for a while.  As most of you will know I am a huge fan of Hell Bunny and I had seen Sarah around facebook, but couldn’t pluck up the courage to ask her for an interview.  I don’t know why because she is honestly such a sweet person!  I finally took the plunge and was over the moon when she agreed to it!  I love Sarah’s work, so without further adu, let’s hear from the women herself!

First of all, can you give me a bit of a rundown on yourself and how you got to where you are!

I’m a designer/illustrator from London who has been working in house for Popsoda Ltd who run Hell Bunny & Spin Doctor. I’ve also been doing freelance artwork since 2012.Before Popsoda I went to uni at DeMonfort University and did a course in Illustration & Graphics . Once I graduated I then emailed lot’s of different clothing companies to find a design job and eventually after lot’s of disapointing responses Popsoda invited me for an interview & I began work experience at Popsoda Ltd which led to a full time job!
To be honest I’ve always thought designing clothing would be an amazing job since I was a little
girl, but I never had the confidence to follow through with trying to get into the area, I never did any clothing design or textile courses, I just always focused on illustration/graphics and luckily when I was 22 I just decided that I might as well try alternative clothing design & see what happens!
I’m afraid it’s not very exciting πŸ˜‰ A typical work day is I go to the Popsoda studio 9am-6pm and then work my own artwork in the evening ,watch some TV series and snuggle with Toto my pet rabbit πŸ˜›
but the good thing about working with Popsoda is that each day can be different, some days it’s all designing/illustrating, fitting comments, then it’s meetings, trade shows, but my favourite days have to be the photoshoots when you see your designs all finished!

When did you first decide you wanted to become a designer?
How did you first get involved with Hell Bunny/ Spin Doctor?
There’s so much competition for creative jobs so I sent loads of emails to different alternative clothing companies saying how I’d like to learn how to design clothing and luckily Hell Bunny/Spin Doctor asked me to come in to visit them with my artwork and they gave me some work experience.

What drew you towards working with Hell Bunny?
Hell Bunny was the first clothing brand that I was REALLY interested in back when I was 16 and made me want to wear dresses haha. I loved how their clothing was mixed with lots of illustrations and quirky prints.

You are one of their newest designers, was is it hard to come into a brand that have such a strong established identity?
I have to admit I was in shock when they hired me, I was quite intimated seeing as I was working in a company that I’ve been a fan of for so long, but they were all really welcoming and I’ve learnt a stupid amount since I’ve been there. The head designer Steph has been an amazing “teacher” I guess you could say haha πŸ™‚ They believed in my artwork being suitable for the brand so that helped a lot.

What was the first thing you designed that went on sale to the public?
The first thing I designed for Hell Bunny was the Sugarskull pencil dress, I remember seeing it be released while I was on holiday and was so over the moon with everybody’s responses. πŸ™‚

Who would you say is your favourite designer and do they have any influence on your own work?
I wouldn’t say I have any favourite clothing designers in particular but I have loads artists who I love and inspire me with my own work, for example Ella Mobbs who has opened up her own label recently & Kat Von D with all her successful projects and creativity they both motivate me to keep pushing myself, but I wouldn’t say they influence my style.

Do you still find time to work on your own projects?
I work on freelance pieces for people at the weekends and have lot’s of plans but I’m so busy so it is a bit of a struggle sometimes, but I love seeing projects finished so I try and keep squeezing them in. πŸ™‚

Which of your own designs is your favourite?
I think my favourite clothing design I’ve done was the Ophelia dress for Spin Doctor, which I didn’t even think I’d design seeing as it has no illustrations in it haha, but another one of my favourites is a collection that’s being released for Summer 2015, but sadly I can’t tell you anything about that yet πŸ˜‰

Have you ever had your work criticised? Do you have any advice for coping with it?
Oh yes! But I think anything creative you do your gong to experience criticism, it comes with the job haha, I just make sure I take in all the feedback, usually the criticism is constructive so I just use it to help me with my future designs!

Whats a typical day for you?
Do you have any tips for any budding designers out there?
The only advice you can really give is to just keep trying to get your artwork seen by companies and lots of people, somebody will see something in you and give you a chance, you just have to keep motivated and not give up.

Do you have any behind the scenes facts most people would be surprised to learn?
I think the only thing is that people don’t realise that the prints/designs really are all designed in house by the Popsoda team, which is really nice that we all work closely on them together and the design team is only a few people so we have a lot to get ready for each season between us.

What influences your designs outside of clothing? Photographs, music etc?
I’m a massive fan of music ,all kinds & while I’m designing I’m always listening to music. I would say that music has the biggest influence on my illustrations to anything else & I think that shows in my artwork as I draw a variety of themes from cute & girly to creepy & Ghoulish. 

Don’t forget to check out Sarah’s facebook page.  You can also find her (and lot’s of pretty dresses) in this video I found from Hell Bunny.

So what do you think to these interview posts? It’s something I want to do more of so I would love to know your thoughts!  

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