Illustrated People Is The Streetwear Line You Need To Know

"You're basic, bye," "I feel like fries," and "Where all the cute boys at?" might be some of the phrases used in casual conversation with your closest friends, but they also happen to be the tongue-in-cheek slogans printed across the tees of streetwear brand Illustrated People. Launched 12 years ago and now designed by Phoebe-Lettice Thompson, the London-based label has become immensely popular among daring female dressers. In 2015, we previewed the campaign images of Illustrated People's three-piece silk pajama collaboration with stylist Violetta Fancies You, which also happened to be the first major shoot for rising model Iris Law, the striking teenage daughter of Jude Law and Sadie Frost. This week, the brand is back with another killer campaign for spring 2017, and it stars a dynamic cast of bright young things, including budding 16-year-old model Kim Turnbull, granddaughter of late artist William Turnbull, girlfriend of Rocco Ritchie, and close friend of Brooklyn Beckham. Talk about teen elite. "This is our first shoot in over a year, and I took it as an opportunity to use it as a refresher for the brand, a 'Hello 2017, this is who Illustrated People is,'" Thompson told Refinery29. "The girls I got involved were selected by me; I did a casting and approached a few that were giving us a lot of love online. It's important being a London-based girl's label that we try our best to represent that." Though 2016 may have been the year of celebrity merch and the hoodie, if Illustrated People's latest collection is any indication, it looks like we'll still be living in slogan sweaters and tracksuits in 2017, too. Below, we talked to Thompson about the offering, and how the brand is taking Instagram by storm.
What was the inspiration for spring '17?
"Two films were the starting point for this collection: Baz Luhrmann's Romeo and Juliet and [Quentin] Tarantino's True Romance." You've been at Illustrated People for a few years now. How has the brand evolved, and how would you like to see it continue to grow?
"Illustrated People has made a steady transition from a T-shirt concession into the girls' streetwear brand we are now. For the last two years, I've been laying solid foundations for IP's future. Now, we are at a really exciting stage: The launch of our new e-tail store has been a success, and we have some new major sales accounts I'm very pleased with and aim to build upon. We've gained quite a specific online fan-base off the back of our throwback styles, and my focus is to continue to push us forward with more hero pieces alongside core classics, hopefully growing the brand in the U.K. and abroad."
Did you cast some of the girls in this campaign from Instagram? Has social media been instrumental in building the brand and increasing visibility?
"Yes I did; that's how I found all of the girls that were involved in the shoot. I advertised a casting call and contacted a few cute girls that had been posting about IP. Instagram has been very important to the brand's growth; it has been an effective way for us to launch and promote new styles, collaborations, and offers." You recently collaborated with Ed Hardy. If you could collaborate with any other brand, who would it be?
"I loved working with Ed Hardy, there will hopefully be another project with them coming out later this year. I did a really fun collaboration with Charli XCX where I designed a three-piece merch collection for the launch of her new single. I would like to work with a major pop star again and do a sneaker with a major activewear label."
Which women within the industry or brands inspire you?
"I really admire Kate Phelan because of the work she's done at Topshop, and because I made a similar move from working at a fashion publication to a retail business (obviously on a much lower, smaller scale!), so I find her success inspiring. At the moment, I also really like Natalia Maczek from Polish label MISBHV, Marques'Almeida, DSQUARE2, and Marc Jacobs."

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