From the Blog

Sep 16 2014


The River Island Design Forum is back for another season, and with more fresh fashion talent than ever before!

Launched in 2012, Design Forum is a collaborative project between River Island and the British Fashion Council that hand picks up-and-coming designers and provides them with a platform to showcase an exclusive collection pushing the boundaries of the high street.

This season, River Island have named Dutch design duo Baartmans and Siegel, and Brit-luxe womenswear talent Liz Black as their Design Forum heroes. 

Following her graduation from Central Saint Martens, Venezuelan-born Liz Black worked alongside design greats including Diane Von Furstenberg before starting her eponymous label in 2010. As well as appearing in all major fashion publications and winning multiple awards for creativity, Liz is a fashion favourite amongst celebrities like Lady Gaga and model Amber Le Bon. Inspired by Russian royalty, Liz Black's 10-piece capsule collection for River Island Design Forum is made up of beautiful laser-cut dresses and coats in black, midnight blue and grey, accentuated with silver and metallic detailing.

On the other hand, Baartmans and Siegel's menswear offering to the River Island Design Forum represents a dark, dystopian themed collection of charcoal, navy and black pieces including tracksuit bottoms and a gold-zippered coat, designed for perfectly structured layering. Dutch/English duo Wouter Baartmans and Amber Siegel met while working at Viktor and Rolf and now, as designers for their own label, are quickly gaining recognition for their interactive, innovative and tailored aesthetic which places an emphasis on detailed craftsmanship and imaginative design. 

Both Liz Black and Baartmans and Siegels' River Island Design Forum collections are available online now, at