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July 12 2014

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Fashion’s Fixation With Tattoos? Thank Olivia Morris

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Want a tattoo? Worried you won’t want one, like, right after the design has been inked into your arm forever and for all time? Fashion has a needle-free solution. Tattoo-inspired designs are showing up everywhere, from the arm-climbing Erik Halley bracelets gracing Freja Beha in the new Karl Lagerfeld campaign to Kate Moss’ tattoo-print maxi dress for Topshop to the range of ink-themed bags recently launched by Coach. Much of the credit for this trend must go to Gucci, which debuted its tattooed Babouska bag for Spring ’09 and then adapted the concept for its successful Tattoo Heart collection benefiting UNICEF. But a little digging in the archives reveals that Olivia Morris got to the tattoo concept first. The London-based designer landed on the fashion map in 2000 with a debut collection that included nude-toned boots, bags, and stilettos with tattoo designs hand-printed onto the leather. More recently for Fall ’07, she adapted the idea for a range of shoes featuring embossed designs by tattoo artist Stacey Gards. “Everyone still asks me about those first tattoo shoes,” Morris notes. “Especially clients who bought them back then and want another pair.” The designer goes on to say that she’s considering bringing back the original tattoo accessories next year, in celebration of her brand’s tenth anniversary. In the meantime, she’s taking the new iterations of her idea in stride. “I think it’s one of those things that happen naturally,” she says. “Tattoos are back in fashion, on the street, and designers are absorbing what they see around them.”

Photo: Courtesy of Olivia Morris

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  2. EmmaBailes says:

    i thought this exact thing when i saw the gucci range- i thought of olivia!

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