Patterns from Eley kishimoto
Lena Corwin started her design carreer some years ago, working for top fashion brands such as Calvin Klein, Marthiné + François Girbaud and Jill Stuart. Today she is a textile designer and she owns her own business of home accessories, wich I must say, is fabulous! She uses patterns of her own creation in pillows, plates, coloured neck ties, etc! She also writes daily in her blog! I went talking to her…
Coxi: First of all I must thank you for letting me interview you! It’s a huge pleasure for me to have you in Life*Fever.
Tell us about you!
Lena Corwin: I work from a studio in my home, designing textile patterns, pillows, plates, neck ties, illustrating, drawing, sewing, and trying to grow a business. I also like to explore cities, shop, bike ride, and garden.
Coxi: How do you define your art?
LC: It’s an exploration of whatever is exciting me at the time— which can be really basic, like colors and shapes that I’m drawn to. I go through phases of fascinations with certain design styles. Recently one has been children’s book illustrations of the 1960s, so I’ve explored what is attracting me to that style and re-interpreted it in my own way. Wow, that’s a tough question!
Coxi: How did you launch your brand into the market?
LC: I’m not very business minded, so I didn’t think much about press and public relations. I sent information to my favorite magazines, and have been thrilled to have my products featured in some of them. The internet has been the best way of “launching” my work. Blogs and websites have changed the way people find new designers. In the past a designer would have to be in a store or a magazine to reach a wide audience. The internet is an amazing tool for independent designers.
Coxi: What’s the best time of the day to create?
LC: The morning. I’m a morning person and I wake up with a ton of ideas.
Coxi: Is there a part of you in your creations?
LC: Yes, definitely. All my designs feel really personal. And they reflect my changing styles and moods.
Coxi: Do you inspirate your self in other designers work – historic or contemporany?
LC: Yes, both. I’m constantly inspired by other artists. There are so many I don’t know where to start. Some of my favorite artists/designers are: Henri Matisse, Frida Khalo, Josef Frank, Vera Neumann, Celia Birtwell, and Tsumori Chisato.
Coxi: What type of music helps you creating?
LC: Usually melodic music, like Elliot Smith and The Shins. But sometimes I need something with more energy. Right now I love the Raconteurs new album.
Coxi: Favorite designer?
LC: Eley Kishimoto, the textile/fashion design duo. Seeing their work is what made me fall in love with textiles and decide to pursue it as a career. They’re still my #1 favorite.
Coxi: What haven’t you worked yet, but you really whant to try it someday?
LC: I would really like to work with ceramics next.
Coxi: What’s your latest obsession?
LC: Geometric shapes. I think it has something to do with my Montessori education. We did a lot of drawing and crafts using geometric shapes. We were probably learning math, but since we were drawing I didn’t realize it. Lately I’ve been really drawn to textiles made from these basic shapes.
Coxi: Are you living your ideal lifestyle?
LC: Yes, I feel really lucky that I am. I really wish I were traveling more though.
Coxi: What do you love and hate about NYC?
LC: I love the people, the culture and diversity. And the energy and drive that New Yorker have. I love the fashion and creativity. I hate how exhausting it can be sometimes.
Coxi: What’s your favorite piece of art you have at home?
LC: I love this question, but it’s so hard to choose. My painting by Elizabeth Schuppe is my newest piece of art and I love it so much.
Coxi: What can’t you live without?
LC: Art. and my family.