An Interview with Penny Armstong, Designer at Native Youth

Self proclaimed no-nonsense British brand Native Youth are bringing their A-game for Spring/Summer 15. Signature details and no-fuss pieces come together to create a collection built for the British summer.

We caught up with one of the designers behind the brand Penny Armstrong, to find out more about her design inspiration, travelling the world and the key pieces within the Native Youth collection.

Native Youth SS15

Could you tell us about the new collection and the inspiration behind it?

Native Youth’s main inspirations have always predominantly from myself and the team’s travels. Whether that be for work or pleasure, we put a lot of emphasis into the initial research process and also source all of our own fabrics for every collection.

And although, global travel is a huge part of the design process, we all combine this with our trademark ethos of producing No-nonsense British Fashion

Can you describe the design process?

The design process starts off with lots of mood bards and general ideas which get refined after fabric sourcing and inspiration trips. There’s two of us in the design department which means that we get to work really closely across product. There’s always lots of late nights involved at the start of the season, but the finished collections always make it worth it.

What are your favourite pieces in the collection?

I always really love our fabrications on jersey, but this season, I think the swims collection really stole the show. The prints all look amazing.

How would you describe the Native Youth guy?

Native Youth offers a stand-out collection which meets the demands of the style conscious male, a guy that’s trend savvy but wants a little more from what’s on offer on the high street.

Native Youth SS15

What have you been listening to in the studio recently?

On our playlist right now is:

Ibeyi: River

Akshin Alizadeh: Pebbles on My Road

A Tribe Called Quest: 1nce Again

Jamiroquai: Love Foolosophy

Have you always wanted to be a designer?

Yes! When I was little, me and my brothers were always encouraged to draw. I used to make my own clothing catalogues and then try and sell my mum the clothes. Fashion is something that I’ve always been interested in, so it’s amazing that it’s now my job.

How did you get into the industry?

I studied fashion at Manchester School of Art and started applying for jobs in the area. I was so lucky to get a job straight after Uni and now I love working for Native Youth. I’ve been here from the start with the brand and its been great to see it evolve.

Native Youth SS15

Can you describe your personal style?

I’d probably describe my personal style as lazy, eclectic and erratic. Sometimes I dress totally different from day to day. I think its important not to take yourself too seriously especially in the fashion industry. I just wear clothes that suit my mood that day.

Where is your favourite place in the world?

My favourite place in the world has to be New York City. Every time I visit,  I fall more and more in love with the people and the amazing museums, restaurants and bars. Paris is a close second… although I also fell in love with Cuba ….  I think maybe, everywhere I’ve ever been is my favourite in some way or other.

Thanks to Penny for taking the time to chat to us, make sure to check out the new Native Youth collection now available at The Hut.

Clare Potts

Clare Potts

Lifestyle Editor

If I’m not at my desk poring over my favourite blogs and online magazines for inspiration, you’ll find me exploring the fells of the Lake District, trying out a new restaurant or styling my future home on Pinterest.

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