Behind the scenes, beyond the sewing machines and the cutters, there is a dedicated production team that plays a pivotal role in bringing every Sassi Holford wedding dress to life. Join us as we sit down with Georgia Reece, Production Co-ordinator, and learn about the intricacies of her role and the meticulous processes at the Sassi Holford atelier.
Let us in on a typical day as a Production Co-ordinator at Sassi Holford.
Working at Sassi Holford is filled with variety and has something different to offer every day. On one day I may be working alongside the Cutting Manager and the Production Administrator reviewing upcoming orders – ensuring that we have all materials/equipment within the building to fulfil our orders. Whilst on another day, I will be working alongside Sassi, sourcing beautiful fabrics to help bring her vision of new bridal designs to life. Another important part of my role as Production Co-ordinator is building and maintaining relationships with suppliers, some of whom Sassi has worked for over twenty years. As with personal relationships, I recognise that strong business relationships require on-going communication. I also understand the importance of continuing to build on these close and trusting relationships; I thoroughly enjoy this important aspect of my job.
What do you love most about your role and working at Sassi Holford?
I love the variety and the problem solving. Every day throws a new challenge, whether it be decision making on different fabric combinations for bespoke orders, or supply chain challenges. From a creative perspective, the process of developing the 2024 Harmony collection alongside Sassi has been the most rewarding and fascinating part of my job so far. It has been the first collection launch that I have been involved in and I have loved sourcing the fabrics from Paris and watching the development process from sketch to a beautifully crafted dress. Finally, seeing Sassi’s designs being modelled at the launch, and in the photoshoot, was such an immensely rewarding moment.
Tell us about your career journey and what led you to your role now?
I studied Textile Design at Cardiff School of Art and Design. It was at university that my passion for textile design really grew and where I developed my personal design skills. In the final year Degree Show I was scouted by the Production Designer of Doctor Who; he offered work experience in the Art Department at the BBC, from which I was offered a job as a Prop Buyer. I worked in the TV industry sourcing props for film and television for five years before deciding to come back to my roots, both geographically and to my passion for textiles.
As a fabric buyer, you get to travel Europe finding the best fabrics to use. Tell us what it’s like to source fabrics from trade shows and what do you look for in fabrics?
It has been fascinating seeing first-hand the new techniques that the industry leaders are using. It is reassuring to see how the focus at trade shows has shifted to ensure environmental awareness is at the forefront of the textile industry. We always look for high quality fabrics which both align with Sassi’s signature style and environmental beliefs. Discover more on our responsibilities here.
Speaking of the Sassi Holford environmental beliefs, how do we try to keep our carbon footprint as low as possible?
We are very mindful of where we source our fabric geographically, ensuring that where possible we buy from British suppliers – our tulle and net supplier for example is based less than 25 miles down the road from our Somerset atelier. Where available, we have switched to eco versions of fabrics which makes a huge difference, especially in our key fabrics where larger quantities are used. We also actively recycle and reuse by-products from all our garments, which contributes to reducing the quantity of materials we have shipped to our atelier. We are mindful to only work with a very small chain of suppliers who we know meet our environmental, social and quality standards.
What recent collaborations have we worked on to recycle and reuse fabric offcuts?
We work closely with designers, milliners, students and artists who use our offcuts in their work; these include award winning sustainable designer Phoebe English, LULU the Label who creates beautiful bridal accessories, and we supply our 100% silk offcuts to Inner Wheel who make comfort cushions for breast cancer patients at our local hospitals. We also hope that donating our one metre end of roll pieces to local colleges for use in their projects will inspire the next generation of designers to continue our ethos of responsible sourcing and recycling.