Molly Goddard’s work often reclaims a traditional feminine aesthetic that has long symbolized, if subtly, the oppression and societal strictures of young womanhood. The British designer’s bright, embroidered smock dresses—baggy, ruched, something fit for a doll—are girly, and yet still leave room for you to breathe, and, if you fancy it, to not be girly at all. Goddard appreciates a youthful sort of anti-fashion sense, finding inspiration in the way kids appear “when they’ve obviously dressed themselves, and are looking a bit mad.”
Do you ever sort of get pushback or any criticism from using the term “girly”?
I don’t know, I think I use it very lightly if at all. I don’t want to be too closely associated to that because I think it has the kind of connotations that aren’t completely positive. But I think it’s a useful, descriptive word. I don’t think it’s a bad word. I don’t know, I guess I’m always keen to not be put into that bracket of pretty, girly clothes. My clothes are a bit more than that. I’d like to think so anyway. [laughs] And I’m not very girly.
What’s the most interesting or inspiring way you’ve seen someone style your clothes?
There was a Beauty Papers thing someone did and I thought that was really lovely because it was about skin, and skin through the tulle which was really amazing. I think Tim Walker and Jacob K did a Vogue issue that I loved. They used my stuff in a few things and it was really transformed. There were two shoots—one with Kate Moss which was really romantic and another one which was a bit weirder and darker. And it was nice to see the two in the same issue. Then also my sister Alice Goddard, she’s a stylist and she always uses my things. I always like seeing what she picks because often what I don’t imagine she’d like is what she ends up picking. So I think that’s interesting to see. And we work closely together on the collection.
What do you wish there was more of in the fashion industry today?
Maybe more money? [laughs] I don’t know, I’d say money because it was really fun when everyone had loads of money to do really frivolous shows. There aren’t many things that are meant to be quite so frivolous as fashion, so I think it’s kind of a good thing to celebrate in that way. But then I also find I’m most creative when I don’t have the money to do something. And we definitely always work on a really tight budget. I suppose I wish there were more of the theatrical shows that there used to be.
Read the full interview by Rachel Hodin for Office Magazine HERE