The Templeton Carpet Factory is one of Glasgow’s most iconic pieces of architecture. Located opposite Glasgow Green, this 19th century, Venetian inspired building is one of the hidden gems of the East End.
Templeton’s elaborate and lavish designs once graced the floors of the Titanic, a far cry from the rainy skies of Bridgeton.
Since closing its doors in the 80s, the creativity within this space has not fizzled out completely. A £22 million regeneration project has seen the factory transformed into Templeton on the Green offices, flats and most importantly studios for Glasgow artists and designers.
One Glaswegian designer who makes use of this historical space is 26-year-old Stevie Newall. His brand Dikkoglimmer launched in early 2015 and the first collection, Anti-Camouflage, helped secure him his first stockist at the Edinburgh Design Exchange.
“Anti-Camouflage pretty much started from a heartbreak – all the best stories do. It was just messy and I think the collection reflects that,” he said.
The theme of colour plays a large part in Newall’s work. Stevie is currently working on his second collection, aptly named Colour Therapy.
He says that this time he has been inspired by healing and the power of colour:
“I was getting belittled by people around me just for being vulnerable and showing so much emotion like how I care about things and like talking about it too much.
“The first collection was to do with coping and getting through a tough time. This time I’ve been really into and interested in healing.
I love the idea of colours that heal and have taken inspiration from what colours affect different parts of the body. Lime green plays a huge part in this collection.”
Stevie’s bright, lime green t-shirt mirrors what he calls an “obsession” with the colour. Dikkoglimmer’s designs are bright and shocking, colour playing a massive part in the prints. His studio is littered with his vibrant garments. Bursts of hot pink, purple and silver turning the workspace into a psychedelic, explosion of colour.
A soundtrack of Kelis, Amy Winehouse and Amerie blares in the background as Stevie speaks about his 90s upbringing. The noughties sound of Amerie’s 2005 hit 1 Thing reflecting his youthful age and appropriately setting the tone:
“I just love everything that’s just got that 90s edge a wee bit, I’ve always been a big fan of that and I think that reflects in the stuff I design. Maybe it’s just ‘cause I’m a 90s kid?”
He laughs as he describes his love of clothes which are “extra, extra tacky”. If 90s fashion is anything to go by, I ask if there will be a Britney and Justin inspired matching outfits in the next collection. He assures me that it won’t be going that far.
So what is next for Stevie? After a whirlwind year of producing screen-printed t-shirts, tote bags and sweatshirts en masse, he hopes that 2017 will bring the luxuries of digital printing and more stockists. Here’s to the new year, and the new challenges it will bring for Stevie, as well as Scottish fashion.