Tell us about your brand. I wasn’t born a Lorelai, I chose this name for myself years ago but only got up the courage to change it last year. It symbolised me taking my life in a different direction, being bolder, brighter and braver than I had ever been. It made sense that my brand bore the same name as it is for the bright and bold, the unashamedly courageous woman that wants and needs to stand out against the drab, grey and the mundane.
How did you start up your brand? I started up my brand at the beginning of this year. I had been itching to design and create something new and I have loved laser cut jewellery for a long time. I started by drawing illustrations inspired by different eras and patterns. I then found a laser cutting company based in the UK and then I taught myself how to use ‘Illustrator’ to create the files to send to them. I was extremely proud of myself for this feat as I couldn’t get the hang of the programme in uni and promptly gave up. That was the old me, Lorelai is not a quitter and thus, something that started out as a few illustrations became necklaces, rings and brooches, all hand made by myself in my bedroom.
Who is your target audience? My customer is a bold, brave woman of any age with a love of colour and form. She may have a Peter Pan complex and refuse to grow old gracefully! She is playful in her clothing and accessory choices and loves vintage. She is active on social media and supports local and independent sellers and in her spare time she drinks brightly coloured cocktails in kitsch bars.
What makes your brand unique? My brand is unique in its constant exploration of colour, texture and shape; it is unafraid to go against the grain and fight against mediocrity.
We love your hand made designs! What inspires you to make certain shapes or choose certain colours? I love collecting vintage clothes, accessories and homeware with interesting patterns and colour combinations; my designs are inspired by all the beautiful pieces I source from charity shops, vintage stores and even sellers on ‘Instagram’. I am particularly inspired by psychedelic prints from the ’60s and ’70s; they are so bold and bright. I am completely and utterly obsessed with colour. I chose my colour scheme intuitively, the colours almost chose themselves as I designed and developed this collection, slimming down my huge marker hoard down to just five colours.
Why use acrylic? I love using acrylic because of its versatility when combined with laser cutting. I like to layer up the pieces to make pretty but solid bits of jewellery that feel good in your hand. I also love how bold the colours are and that you can get all different types, such as frosted or glitter acrylic, which I’m dying to incorporate in to a collection soon. With acrylic the possibilities are endless, if I can dream it I can do it.
What made you chose to collaborate with Old Tat mag? A friend introduced me to Old Tat when her bags were used in the ‘Away with the pigeons’ crazy bird lady photo-shoot of issue 01. The overall aesthetic of the magazine really pleases me; I am a massive fan of collecting loads of “old tat” and constantly scour charity shops for odd little things to fill my shelves. My friends often describe my room as looking like a really awesome junk shop.
Let’s talk about your personal style…what’s your biggest influence when it comes to how you dress? My biggest influence when it comes to how I dress is the period of the ’50s, ’60s and ’70s. I am so in love with bold, garish prints, practically every item of clothing in my wardrobe has a pattern on it; even the jeans! Even my hair is garish, it’s currently bright purple! Also, at the beginning of this year I made a vow to only buy clothes and accessories second hand, vintage or from independent sellers. I think that it is extremely important to help out the people that are doing it for themselves, running their own businesses just like me. I really enjoy making clothes in my spare time and I recently made a skirt out of an amazing fabric that my best friend found for me, it’s covered in all sorts of animals, frogs, toucans and badgers to name a few!
What is the hardest thing about what you do? The hardest thing right now is that I work from my bedroom in Reading and it can be a bit isolating. I would love to be in London amidst all the culture and interesting people.
What is the best thing about what you do? The best thing was leaving a terrible job on minimum wage to follow my dreams. Now I have the time to act on any tiny idea that sparks in my head straight away. I can also go on little trips to get inspired, visit the local charity shops to find treasures and even go for walks in the farmland near me to clear my mind. I am always itching to create something and if I’m not busy working on my brand, I am making my own clothes, doodling away in my sketchbook or writing to my pen pals. I even decorate the envelopes so that they are as cheerful and colourful as everything else I create.
Where is your brand headed? In the near future I am expanding my brand to include clothing inspired by ’50s, ’60s and ’70s shapes, made from up-cycled vintage/second-hand fabric, mixed in with my own screen printed and painted fabrics.
What is the dream? The dream is for my designs to be included in a kitschy film like ‘Jawbreaker’ or ‘Clueless’, or in one of Kate Nash’s videos.
Words by Mica Willgrass