Inspiration can come in many forms. From an image in a gallery to something seen in nature, the hairdressing community can be inspired by anything and everything around them. But for the 2014 Northern Ireland Hairdresser of the Year recipient Sharon Malcolm, her inspiration for this award-winning captivation collection titled “Bella,” it was a certain individual who played muse to her creative senses.
Her name is Isabella Blow, a renowned magazine editor who is best known for her love of hats and for discovering the iconic and beloved fashion designer Alexander McQueen. Back in 2013, the Somerset House, a major arts and cultural center in the heart of London, hosted an exhibition honoring Isabella Blow, who passed away in 2007. It was here at this exhibit that Malcolm became truly inspired to create her collection.
“The late Isabella combined seriously stylish pieces with her love of millinery to create a unique look that was very much her own,” shared Malcolm.
When planning this collection, the strength of Isabella’s style had a huge influence. She was quirky, yet classic and dark.
Playing off this “classic meets dark” characteristic, the Bella collection contrasts gothic elegance and styling with contemporary hair. Featuring pastel ombré, precision fringes and vibrant reds, these looks capture the alternative style sensibilities that are wearable and attainable by clients.
“For the BHA’s Northern Ireland Hairdresser of the Year award, the rules state that the looks should be commercial,” added Malcolm. “And from the feedback that we’ve received in the salon, many of the looks from my collection are very sought-after by my clients. The looks give them a bit of inspiration, both in terms of cut and colour and one of our most requested styles is the beautiful long haired glamorous wavy look.”
When we asked Sharon what she is most proud of, in addition to winning an award for these looks, she replied with, “It’s my best collection to date. It’s a visual representation of how I have grown and developed as a hairdresser, whilst showcasing the creativity and vision that I had planned since visiting the Isabella Blow exhibition.”
Hair: Sharon Malcolm
Photography: Jack Eames
Makeup: Siobhon Luckie
Styling: Desiree Lederer