Louise Korner is a younger designer that runs her own ready-to-wear label, based in London. In our interview, she shares the joys and challenges of working in fashion.
Can you introduce yourself to our readers?
My name is Louise Korner and I am the founder and creative director behind the ready-to-wear label LOUISE KÖRNER.
How did you first get interested in fashion design?
It has always been there and I think it started when I was really young and my mother’s wardrobe was a favorite spot to put something on and play a character. In later years I actually thought I was going to study architecture or product design, but I didn’t know if I had the eye for it. However, after my Foundation year at Central Saint Martins they said I should specialize in fashion and fashion prints, and that’s how I got into fashion design!
Best and worst sided of working in fashion?
It is such a satisfaction when you are creating a new collection, especially when it falls perfectly on the body or when the prints come out beautifully. When you love what you are doing it doesn’t feel like work and you can work late nights with no problem.
However, it is a very tough industry and people are going to criticize your designs. It is a lot of pressure (especially starting your own company) and it’s an intense schedule during the whole year. That’s why it’s important to find balance.
What was the biggest challenge that you faced when starting your own label?
The biggest challenge was to start thinking like an entrepreneur and business person. What you realize pretty quickly is that being only a designer is not enough. You have to be very focused, set up your different targets and strategies. And these are things that I had no idea about when I started!
I can say that I’ve never learned so much in such a short period of time as when I started my label.
Moment in your career so far that you are most proud of?
One of them is when I was working as a costume designer with David Bamber for the remake of the English national ballet Firebird – Ballet Russe. It was at the premier, seeing these talented ballet dancers in my own designs on stage. It was so surreal.
And when I won Swedish Fashion Talent of the Year 2016 by the Swedish Fashion Council – that was an incredible proud moment for me. I will never forget that.
What inspires you?
Subjects or things that inspire me are usually things far beyond the fashion world. I believe that those subjects make it easier to come up with something new and unique in colour palettes, patterns, silhouettes and shapes. I work in collages in my big sketchbook to organize & collect my ideas. For me it’s visually much easier to organise my creativity and let the illustrations and drawing tell its own story. Past inspiration subjects range from abandoned oil factory, Scandinavian forestry, pre-historic dinosaurs and cosmic aquarium.
Who do you have in mind when designing for your brand?
I have this strong woman in mind that is distinctive, daring and graceful. She is confident and knows what she wants. If the design is flattering and enhances her characteristics, it’s a keeper!
Any person, dead or alive, that you would love to see wearing your designs and why?
Pernille Teisbaek, because I just love her way of styling herself and she also has a Scandinavian modern twist to it.
What do you think about social media and the internet redefining fashion nowadays?
I think that we’re living in a very interesting period and it’s great that the general public and the customers have their voices heard. I think a lot of women can relate easier to bloggers and social media since editors, celebrities, models and the fashion world in general can be quiet intimidating and much harder to relate to.
Any advice for people out there that want to follow in your footsteps and become designers/start their own labels?
Try to get as much experience before starting your own label, be open for new ideas and change of direction (It’s never going to be a straight path and therefore be flexible how it develops itself). Be a fast problem-solver (Problems are popping up every way and therefore you have to come up with quick solutions).
If you could have any super-power what would it be and why?
I would be able to clone myself: I would be able to be so effective and could be in two different places at the same time!