Not the least among the most beautiful aspects of our work ist to be in such a close contact with the companies and designers themselves and come to know each other on such good therms. Its a kind of a familiar vibe, we are working together sometimes for decades and it is always a great pleasure to meet each other at the fairs, commute and to get excited about the newest collections.
That is why we came up with the idea to conduct little interviews with the creative heads to give you a better understanding whats happening behind the scenes of a new collection.
What does the colour black mean to you?
A few years ago, I created studio b3 motto, which says „black is the only constant” and it is present in our logo and on many prints in the collections.
To me, black is the most ideal colour, because it can be anything. Black can be modest, yet it can be bold and confidence-boosting. It can be soothing and calm or rebellious and noisy. It belongs to classics, but it is avant-garde, too. It is simple and sophisticated at the same time. You can wear black if you want to stand out in a crowd, but also if you want to „hide”. Black is the ultimate essence of style and it’s always a good choice, for literally all ocasions. Black is suitable to wear at parties with friends, official events, going out to a theatre or on a date, for everyday life and for sport.
Black matches all other colours and I don’t believe some people should avoid black because it doesn’t suit them. It always does.
How do you become a designer / which profession did you learn?
I have had a lot to do with clothes since I remember, as my parents have somehow always been in fashion. These were different fields of fashion, hand-knitted collections of beautiful sweaters, then t-shirts for women and men with fancy prints in times when printed t-shirts in Poland were impossible to buy, later on a brand of kidswear. When I was a child, I spent each holiday helping out my parents and I guess I learned a lot about „behind the scenes” in fashion business, without even realizing it at the time. I learned a lot from my parents, who have always been very creative, especially that in Poland during postcommunist times, getting fabrics, making clothes, realizing ideas in fashion was a huge challenge.
After high school I went to a school of fashion design in Cracow, we had a lot of drawing and paintng classes, we created first collections and it was great. However, these kind of artistic schools ofter focus of artism itself and don’t really teach how to function in a real business in real life. So in terms of running a fashion business, I learned everything first from watching my parents’ businesses and then working on my own for various cloting companies, and eventually founding studio b3.
What inspires you?
I must say openly: I hate that question 😉 It is usually the first question people ask a designer, or if I meet someone new and tell them what I do. The second question is often: „So tell me, what will be trendy next season?” 😉
Thinking why I hate this question, probably it’s beacuse I don’t know how to answer it properly. And I don’t know how to reply, beacuse what inspires me can be anything. Starting from everyday life, where literally everything can bring into my mind an idea of a new dress, an inspiration for the whole collection or a detail that will be used. I often find that the best ideas come to me when I am doing the most trivial things, like taking a shower, driving a car or waiting in a queue at a grocery store. Of course each idea has its source, even when it’s not defined. So I could say that my inspirations are an outcome of all movies I have watched, places I have visited, people I have met, conversations I have had, exhibitions I have seen, and so on, processed in my head and combined in various ways.
Do you design on your own or in a team?
I design together with my mother. Actually, studio b3 was founded as a family business that me and my parents started in 2008. Now my father takes care of photography, and my mom and I work on designs. We work separately at the beginning, and at a certain point we confront our ideas and continue working on the collection together. Usually we agree on most things during the process of creating a collection, but sometimes we fight over proportions, details or colours 🙂 Eventually we must find a solution and our designs are a compromise between two generations of women. I think it is good that there are two generations of designers working in a team, as it creates a unique mix of different ideas and approaches to fashion which come together into one collection.
Do you draw your sketches by hand or do you use a computer?
By hand only. To me it’s more personal than using a computer, I can „feel” the ideas better when I work with a piece of paper and a pencil. I always wish I had enough time to make decent, polished drawings of all designs in the collection. But the reality looks different. All ideas that in the end become pieces of clothing remain rough drawings.
One of my teachers in the school of fashion often used to say that „a sheet of paper will accept everything”. And that’s true. Each design looks nice as a drawing and it seems it will go out exactly as intended on a sketch. The struggle, however, begins when you start to transform this idea from a piece of paper into a real clothing. That is why I don’t spend much time on sketches, when I can see the shape, the proportions and the most important details of the design I am making, I immediately move on to working on a prototype 1:1.
What else, beside fashion, would you like to create / have you already created?
If I wouldn’t work in fashion, I would like to be a chef. I enjoy cooking a lot. In my opinion, cooking is close to art. Food is not only about nourishing your body, but it’s a whole story. These are ideas of what you are planning to cook, it’s a field for experiments and searching for new flavours. Then the process of cooking or baking itself, where you need to know the rules, but you can also break these rules. And the final effect which is both the taste and the appearance of a meal.
The only thing I would worry about is that being a chef could be dangerous for my silhouette, as I would eat a lot. So I stick to fashion for the time being.
Thank you Paulina for the great interview with you 🙂