“Scottish luxury womenswear designer, Henrietta Ludgate, has gained an impressive number of awards and built a formidable reputation with high end retailers in a short space of time. Henrietta is a respected rising star internationally.” (full biography here).

We love her stile, her way of thinking. She’s really a model to follow, because she combines aestetics, ethic and business. That’s why C.L.A.S.S. met her with some questions.

When did you start?

I graduated from Central St Martins and worked as a costume designer before founding my own label in 2009. My label has continued to grow; I now have stockists as far afield as Kuwait and Japan, last year I opened my first store in Bayswater.

Collection: themes, fabrics,..

Structural, strong shapes with minimalist lines in luxurious British fabrics… The designs are sophisticated with an edge. A combination of sharp lines and drapes which follow the contours of the body. This meshes with Schiapararelli’s view of clothing as a type of architecture; she believed that clothing should be closely connected to the frame of the body, just as a building’s form is drawn from its structural skeleton .I draw inspiration from Elsa Schiaparelli and her vision of fashion as architecture.

Where is distributed?

The collection is distributed thanks to the website, the showroom in Bayswater, London and in 15 luxury speciality and department boutiques (Luisa Via Roma, Penelope, Sugar and Yoox.com, ..)

What is your relationship with the responsible innovation?

I think two overriding reasons spring to mind. Central to this decision was the desire to support the local economy and businesses that had aided me in the design setup. I would have felt unfair if having found some initial success, I suddenly moved my operations overseas. Secondly I felt that having drawn my inspiration from my surroundings the best way of translating these ideas into reality was to use materials found in that landscape. So whilst the traditional Scottish folklore tales provided with me the ideas behind the clothes I needed to continue that theme by manufacturing them from materials produced in and infused by the area. To have done anything else would have compromised both the design and the ethos of the whole collection.

www.henriettaludgate.com

shop at www.houseofhenrie.bigcartel.com

Interview by Laura Molteni