This month we spoke to Cat from The Posticherie, who intricately handcrafts all the hair creations found at the fascinating Walthamstow-based hair design studio. Cat’s incredible talent has seen her work on some exquisite photoshoots (check out her online portfolio), productions and weddings. We found out all about her business and why she chose to take part in Forge.

Tell us about your business 

The Posticherie specialises in making hair pieces for editorial shoots, theatre productions and personal wear for weddings and special events. They are made by weaving natural hair to make a variety of different pieces (or as they say in France, postiche!) that can be used to compliment and add to a contemporary or historical style. As well as traditional postiche, we also make bespoke creations that are more sculptural and extravagant.

When did you set it up? 

I have been making hair pieces under The Posticherie name since 2015, but it was always very much a ‘side hustle’. I wanted the outlet so that I could develop and create bespoke pieces of my own, alongside the work that I do working for a film and TV wig making studio.

 Why Forge? What urged you to apply?

I had seen that there were applications open for the programme as I had been following Forge and Creative United for some time. I was interested in having a studio space locally in Waltham Forest and was especially keen to be based within the CEZ. However I put off applying until I went to my first Hive Collective: Hive Meets at the beginning of March. (Little did we know that would be the last one that would be in real life for some time) I met Helen, from The Wool Kitchen and she explained that it had been hugely beneficial to her and she encouraged me to apply. Thanks Helen!

What are the challenges and opportunities that your business is currently facing during the pandemic? 

The entertainment industry is still very much closed for the foreseeable future, so I have used this time to try and develop new techniques and processes that could be more profitable and attractive for personal wear. In particular, I am looking into making bespoke, handmade weft (like hair extensions) that can be bought by the metre and cut to the desired width, to transform a look and give the wearer confidence, for example for weddings or a special event.

How have you had to adapt? What measures did you have to put in place?

As I work part-time at the wig making studio I have been furloughed since March, so I have been dividing my time between experimenting with hair weaving and childcare. I have been keeping a close eye on the procedures that will be coming into place re: keeping everything clean and safe to adhere to the industry’s new guidelines.

How important is connecting with other businesses to you?

Really important! I’ve found it so valuable to become connected with other businesses in the area, and I feel so excited to be a part of the local community. Joining the meet ups online and attending the talks has all been so helpful in gaining knowledge and insight into so many business conundrums that I have had.

What kinds of businesses or individuals would you like to connect with through Forge?

I initially thought I would only benefit from connecting with businesses/ individuals that were within my field. Fashion, video makers, theatre production, etc. that I could collaborate on projects with, but through being accepted onto Forge I have found that I’ve gained a lot from meeting and linking up with a whole range of professions who have similar business goals and ambitions.

Tell us something we might not know about you

When I was 12, I appeared as an extra in “Wilde” the film about Oscar Wilde, starring Stephen Fry and (at the time) a young, up and coming actor named Jude Law… I was allowed two days off school and got to dress in the most amazing Victorian costume.

What inspires you?

At the moment I’m really into making fringe hair pieces… I’ve been searching back through photo albums and finding pics of the fringe fashions from my youth which have been fairly inspiring! Also, I come from a costume design background, as that’s what I studied at uni, so I’m always inspired and interested by film, ballet and theatre. Sadlers Wells, English National Ballet and The National Theatre have all been screening performances that I’ve been really enjoying watching online during lockdown.

Cat and The Posticherie join the Forge community as part of the final edition, Cohort 4.