Crawly couture

It might make us twitchy, but Hendrik Vermeulen's latest fashion collection is inspired by the intricate patterns of insects.

South African fashion designer Hendrik Vermeulen’s latest fashion collection is inspired by the beauty of insects. Called Insecta Mirabilis, the collection mimics the appearance of insects, using the patterning on their bodies printed onto fabric and incorporated into the design in strategic ways. The result is an almost fluorescent, fantastical range of delicate, floaty garments designed to play on the attractive/repellant qualities of insects.

Vermeulen intentionally chose insects that are not particularly attractive, such as moths, whose marking are incorporated into the garment above. Through depicting this insect instead of incredibly beautiful butterflies, Vermeulen calls attention to the beauty of creatures that are often overlooked.
Vermeulen worked with fabric in a variety of ways to create his own embellished textiles. These include hand dying, custom digital printing, embroidery, applique, moulding and beading.
Vermeulen's designs feature cinched waists and patterns placed to exaggerate strategic points on the body.
A focal feature of the collection is its use of textures and materials. With mohair, feathers, wool and 13 different kinds of silk, Vermuelen offers interesting and unique garments that appeal to a variety of wearers.