Urban In Ibiza designer Hazel Crowney, of Phosforescence, is a woman of many talents. Originally born in London, Hazel, a travelling chica, followed her love of Indian music and dance all the way to Bombay (Mumbai) where she has carved out a successful career as a Bollywood actress. Inspired by the colour and craftsmanship of Indian culture, she launched her clothing label Phosforescence, taking influences from the Maharajahs, the Indian fisher-woman, ‘70s disco and Bollywood glam.
I was blown away by her collection at Atzaro for the Urban In Ibiza event. A burst of Bollywood, with all the colours of the Indian rainbow, made out of Indian Saris, made up of cottons and silks and styled to perfection with princess Leia hair adorned in flowers and pom poms, Miss Crowney certainly knows what works! I feel that she really captured the essence of India in her clothes, I almost felt like I had been transported to the depths of Bombay (Mumbai) for an evening! I wanted to know more about this lady, I asked her if she would like to feature as an Essential Style Designer Up Close, and she gladly accepted…
Where are you from?
I’m originally from the UK, born in London but have spent the last eight years living in India.
Did you study, if so where?
I did a fashion diploma many years ago at West Kent College near to where I grew up.
What made you want to become a designer?
I have been designing and making clothes since I was about twelve but then I went to India to become an actress. A few years ago I started making clothes for myself for the different events I had to attend and got a really good reaction from people. Everyone encouraged me to take designing more seriously so I did. The show I did at Urban in Ibiza was my debut!
What was the inspiration for your collection?
I took a lot of the inspiration from the show from Bombay where I live. The traditional Sari from that region is simple cotton in very bright colours. A lot of the dresses from the show are made from this fabric.
Why did you choose to show in Ibiza?
The reason I decided on Ibiza is because of the weather and lifestyle. My clothes are really to be worn while you’re away from every day life, somewhere warm and laid back.
Talk me through the colour palette?
I love bright contrasting colours and experimenting with unusual colour combinations. I purposely stayed away from black. I kept to a palette of jewel shades; lots of purples through to violet and mauve, turquoises through to aqua marines and green and then lots of hot fuchsia pinks with touches of tangerine and yellow.
How would you describe your brand?
Phosforescence is ‘hippy chic’, from beach to lounge, happy-time wear. A fusion of diverse elements brought together in sweet harmony.
What women did you have in mind when designing your collection?
When I design I tend to use myself as a point of reference. I think about what I would love to wear and then everything else springs from there. My clothes are for anyone who loves to look and feel beautiful.