What’s a better way to kick start a new fashion section with exclusive interviews from upcoming & established designers than the lovely designer above? This interview marks the first of fashion “One-on-One” interviews with today’s coolest & talented designers on the fashion scene. For the first installment, I had the chance to interview Michele Lee, Founder and Designer of S.I.L.K New York.
S.I.L.K., a New York-based women’s fashion brand, creates chic, well-priced looks for the contemporary woman that transition easily from dawn to dusk. And, true to their namesake, uses mostly silk and silk-based fabrics to blend modern with timeless while balancing simple, ladylike elegance.
I became aware of S.I.L.K a few seasons back through a connection to their PR agency, Deborah Hughes, Inc. Since then, I have been interested in learning more about Michele’s brand. For starters, I love her use of print. For those that know me, know that I am a sucker for color and prints. Especially prints!
I also love the fact that her clothes are totally relatable and most of all, wearable.
I had the opportunity of wearing S.I.L.K Spring 2013 to the Man Repeller event. I was beyond excited wearing S.I.L.K New York. I believe in supporting newcomers. I am all about networking and helping one another.
When the attendees at the event complimented the jacket, I was truly happy. I will forever be grateful to the lovely team at DHI and to Michele for taking a chance on me!
S.I.L.K New York is a brand on the rise and I look forward to their upcoming collections.
Tell us about your inspiration behind your latest collection, Spring 2014. How is it different from your past inspirations? Who or what inspire you?
Michele: For Spring 2014, I was inspired by a series of porcelain figurines that I saw in an small antique shop. I was quite enamored with the figurines which included authentic looking sail boats, abstract flowers and yellow bumble bees. I decided to incorporate these into the collection using nautical monogram, blooming garden, and honeycomb prints.
Silk floral prints are my favorite so they are always a staple in my collections. Next I introduce a fabric and pattern that creates a little more depth; for spring 2014 that depth comes from jacquard fabrics in toffee and midnight blue. For the finishing touches I like to add something unexpected in the details such as a unique trim or distinctive cuff.
Your favorite looks from the Fall and Spring 2014 collections and why.
Michele: From fall that would be the navy mini floral print dress and navy large floral print coat as well as the gold cotton foil pieces. They are very classic yet modern at the same time. From Spring I love the citron and toffee honeycomb print sateen 3/4 sleeve dress. It is perfect for day to night dressing.
Who’s your dream clientele? Celebrity or Non.
Michele: My dream celebrity clientele would be First Lady Michelle Obama and Tilda Swinton. The S.I.L.K. woman is confident and likes to look modern without being a slave to trends which I feel both these woman do well.
What advice would you give to newcomer designers?
Michele: Dare to be bold and do something different but it is important to stay true to yourself and your design aesthetic.
Describe your design aesthetic in three words.
Michele: Modern, Classic, Luxe
If you could time travel to any era, which would you pick and why.
Michele: I love the style of the 60’s. I think of Audrey Hepburn whose style was chic and timeless but sexy without necessarily being overtly so.
Favorite moment from creating the Spring 2014 collection.
Michele: My favorite moment is when everything comes together perfectly! I like to see the final looks and compare them to my original sketches because it’s like watching them come to life
– Christine Shepherd
Images from DHI and S.I.L.K New York