What Women Wear: Snowden Flood

— by Alyson Walsh

Photos: Claire Pepper

In another new feature for That’s Not My Age, I’ll be talking to a range of women about their personal style and what they wear. First up, is fabulous Snowden Flood (real name) who designs homewares and stationery and answers to the title of creative director (or artist, or designer). Snowden Flood has a wonderful retro-tastic image. We live quite close to each other in south London and I once went to a sample sale at her home (where I snapped up a set of her River Series plates), so when we bumped into each other at a local market, I asked if she’d like to take part in What Women Wear.

Named after her uncle Jim Snowden, she has an American mother (based in the UK) and spent the 1990s in New York. Where, as a mature student, Snowden obtained a Masters degree at Parsons School of Art and Design and worked for Peter Marino Architects. Returning to the UK in 2000 to set up her eponymous business, Snowden has subsequently worked on commissions for the British Museum, Tate Modern, London Transport Museum and Chatsworth House. The 53-year-old also has an Oxo Tower shop, ‘I never actually intended to become a shopkeeper,’ she says, ‘it was supposed to be a studio but because of the busy riverside location people kept popping in to make enquiries about my designs – and I liked the idea of supporting other UK makers by selling an array of beautiful, unique things.’

Here’s Snowden Flood’s Style Profile:

My style is colourful, probably eclectic. I like patterns and embroidery, things that are unusual. I have to have some colour – it makes me happy. I do buy a lot of vintage clothes and I keep clothes for a long time (partly due to practicality, I’m a single mum and I’m self-employed, so I buy a stuff on eBay). I’m not a slave to the shops but I do love a bargain. I like things that are simple and beautifully cut, and tend not to shop on the high street much – though I do like COS and Arket. I buy from smaller makers like Old Town, Hades knitwear and Lowie. I’m always on my bike and so I wear trousers, or fuller skirts and dresses. Because I’m short (5′ 4″) I like the look of the 1930s and 1940s, I feel like that nipped-in-at-the-waist silhouette suits my style more. Though I might have to change that look if my midriff expands any more in middle age!

The striped dress in the top photograph is 1940s, it’s cotton and cost 30 euros. I saw it on the street at the Braderie de Lille. It’s really soft and just lovely. I wear it with flat shoes or my Tracey Neuls shoes. I don’t wear much jewellery but I’ll put a scarf in my hair. My glasses are Anne et Valentin, they’re French I bought them in Lille at the same time as the dress.

I’ve always dressed to please myself. I’m not being big-headed but when I worked in a fancy office in New York, where all the women spent thousands on Prada and Hérmes, and I looked like a parrot in my second-hand orange coat, I  was always asked who made my clothes. I think it’s to do with my mum, she’s incredibly creative and stylish. She always had wallpaper on the ceiling and used to mix and match so that half the wall was one pattern and half was another. If you’ve grown up with someone doing something interesting with colour, there’s an aesthetic, it’s about not being afraid.

Clothes make me feel like myself, like I’m saying who I am that day. It’s almost playful. Getting dressed is the same as when I’m doing a design, I’m putting different things together. I like things that are a little bit ‘off’, a coral linen 1940s jacket with an olive green African print dress. I like to be colourful but not too lairy. I’ll wear slightly complimentary tones or patterns but I don’t worry about the rules. My advice is: be yourself, don’t sweat over it.

Vintage DVF wrap dress

The vintage DVF dress in the second photo is from Menage Modern Vintage and leather bag (handmade in the UK) is Mimi Berry. Have a look at Snowden’s work HERE or visit her riverside shop at Oxo Tower, London.

Hair & makeup by Louise Heywood. Louise does one-to-one makeup lessons in her south London studio for ‘women who like to keep it subtle’.

What women like Snowden wear:

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