Tuesday, 12 July 2011

Introducing Alja Slemensek

We recently caught up with Slovenian fashion designer Alja Slemensek to find out more about her fashion label, what inspires her and her plans for the label. Alja will be showcasing her S/S12 collection in September during London Fashion Week.

Did you always want to be a fashion designer? If you were not a fashion designer what would you have been?
Yes, being fashion designer was always my dream since I was a child. I think a makeup artist or photographer.
How do you think growing up in Slovenia influenced your designs?
There are always positive and negative sides I think and growing up here is not a fashion designers dream ;). I wish I would know how I would turn out as a designer if I would grow up in London, Paris or New York, but I definitely believe I would be different also as a person or not?. I think there are quite a few very good designers here but it is really hard to only work and create in Slovenia and live from it... I am thinking about going abroad again.

What did your university exchange program in Denmark teach you about design?
I was accepted at Designskolen in Denmark for one year-exchange-programme. They put me in a class with older students who were already working on their Master's. That one year gave me so much. I became more confident and self-reliant designer. I also got better in technical skills. I did a few workshops, learnt how to knit. There were always consultations available if you needed help with something. It was a great experience for me in every way.
What would you describe your aesthetic to be?
I like lace, vintage styles and details. I like minimalism and less is more but sometimes I like kitsch. The label's concept is sensual minimalism, colour-themed, detailed. Designs are based on the cut of the fabric, organic lines and forms, contrast.

Where do you get your inspiration? How does it come to you?
Oh this is so hard to answer. I guess it comes from life, from how you feel that moment, everything I like can inspire me, also my friends and people I meet, dreams, films...Its in me. I don’t know how to explain that ;).
What ideas and themes influenced your current collection?
This last collection was inspired by origami technique and modern warrior (Origami Warrior) but right now this new collection that I am working on is inspired by LOVE, Romance,..
What would you say the "Alja Slemensek" woman is like?
Elegant, loves and appreciate Art, nature and animals. Confident, yet shy. Happy and positive, respectful.

To what extent did the work experience at KAUFMANFRANCO influence your work?
It was great. I got a look-in how a fashion company works; got to work in a team and meet nice talented people. I learnt a lot on different fields too and decided I have to start my own label.
What was it like to participate in the Ramazzoti runaway award for Berlin Fashion week?
It was a nice experience. The event was well-organized by professionals so I only focused on my collection. I got nice compliments in the end and also some other opportunities. 
What other fashion shows have you taken part in?
Had several fashion shows in Slovenia, one in Denmark and this April I had fashion show at Macedonia Fashion week.

How has your styling experience influenced your designs?
I like to try everything connected with cloths, fashion and so on.  To get more and different experience.
So I am happy that I did some styling for magazines and helped with costumes at music video, TV commercials and short film... I met some really talented and interesting people but I also realized that I love to design and I am more focused on that.
What are your hopes for the label in the future?
 I wish my label would be favoured with more new happy costumers. To get even better and well-known and keep doing what I love to do. I guess that is every designers dream :)

For more information please visit: http://www.aljaslemensek.com/

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