Thursday, 26 March 2015

INTERVIEW | EMILIE VENTUJOL OF PIERROT LA LUNE








Denmark has built its history on design that celebrates simplicity and timeless style. The founder of Pierott La Lune is intricately entwined in the stamp that her country has and continues to make on the world. She is the granddaughter of furniture designer Børge Mogensen, and since 2013 she has been focussed on producing clothes under her childrenswear label. Emilie studied textile design at university in Copenhagen and lived and worked in India for several years liaising between Indian textile manufacturers and European design companies. After deciding to start her own business, Emile spent time ensuring she could produce clothes in a sustainable and socially responsible way. Her products are made from organic GOTS-certified Indian cotton and the wool is handmade in Bolivia under Fairtrade conditions, helping local women to support their families and educate their children. Emilie lives in Copenhagen and has just released Pierrot La Lune’s Spring/Summer 2015 collection.

What was behind the decision to start Pierrot La Lune? It has been my dream for many years to do my own line of children’s clothes. I needed a lot of things to fall into place before I was ready for take off. I needed to save up some money and I needed my kids to be older and more independent. 

What had you been doing previously? I am educated as a designer and worked with design for private people, making clothes for them. I also have been teaching design and fashion. 

What is important to you when designing children's clothes? The most important ideal I will never compromise on is the comfort must go along with the pretty look. Never would I make something too tight or too “adult” looking, kids must be kids and in my world they must be what we see not the clothes as the first thing, meaning the clothes should not take all the attention from the human being. 

How do you try to differentiate your products from others on the market? I never think about that. In fact, I don’t think much about the market. I make what my heart tells me to make and what my creative impulse craves for and I seem to be able to reach a segment of customers who like this look. I want my line and brand to be truthful, authentic and loving in the atmosphere. If others do this as well I would be thrilled!  

What has been completely unexpected since starting your business? The amount of positive feedback. I did expect a good response as I knew I was doing a good job but as much as it has been is really a gift. 

What is something that people often don't realise about your wares? That good-quality, sustainable production from the cotton plant to the consumer is bound to cost money. We should worry when clothes are too cheap, someone down the line is paying the price for sure. I understand that my line might be a bit expensive but the fact that every single person involved in making this line is paid well and have not been in touch with chemicals is important to remember. 

Where do you look to for design inspiration? Anywhere, mostly in India but also a lot in movies. I love movies and get a lot of ideas watching them as they can create a universe in a way I don’t find elsewhere in any other art. 

What do consider when dressing or styling children? I always strive to reach a complete look without styling too much. The art for me is in making them look natural yet with a certain harmony and touch to the colours and shapes they are. I like also to have an idea from an old film for instance and try to reach the look and then twist it with another little detail giving some edge. 

What role do you want your products to play in a childhood? I love to hear when kids like my styles. When mothers tell me their Pierrot la Lune shirt is his favourite or she only wants to wear this dress, etc. I would love the children to feel beautiful because they are! 

What was the last great children's book that you read? My all time favourite book for children is Brother Lionheart by Swedish author Astrid Lindgren. I loved it as a kid and I was so looking forward to reading it to my son. We finished it over a weekend some weeks back and he kept saying: “Mom, stop crying!” I kept crying while reading as the book just touches a place in my heart not many books or anything else seems to reach. Fantastic book! And it was playing a special role in my life while my parents got a divorce and I faced a difficult period in my childhood. 

images courtesy of pierrot la lune

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