Laura Velasco - FOUNDER OF LULA LAORA

Laura Velasco - FOUNDER OF LULA LAORA

Q: WHERE DID YOU GROW UP? 

A: I was born and raised Geneva, Switzerland. It was a very multicultural community which allowed me to grow up surrounded by diverse cultures and communities. The mix o languages and traditions had a huge impact on the person I am today and definitely shaped my values.

Q: WHY FASHION?

adjusting dress, photo shoot, behind the scenes, lula laora, SS21

A: I always enjoyed playing with fabrics and anything I could find to dress up. I’m a big movie fan Set design and costumes have such a great impact on building a character and moving the story line along, and so I started creating my own visual stories to build my own characters.

As a little girl, letting myself go into these different characters helped me discover who I am as a person. I believe clothes are an extension of who we are. We evolve and change so much throughout our lives. Things we loved 10 years ago might not be relevant for us today and that’s why I think embracing clothes as an extension of our personality helps us to be our true self.

I want to be a part of a living organism that embraces change. Our fashion styles evolve all our life, and it’s a gift to truly embrace that. It’s a great source of confidence to get to live out however you’d like. I want to empower people to feel confident to explore and embrace their personalities and changes throughout their lives. 

Q: WHAT DOES MUSIC MEAN TO YOU? 

lula laora behind the scenes photo shoot

A: Music has always been a huge part of my life. As a teenager, it was one of my main sources of energy, but it also made me discover amazing communities of people. A lot of artists from the music industry fascinate me with their performances, lyrics, attitude and look. To me it was clear I needed to collaborate with them.

Slipknot was one of my favourite bands growing up and still is today. I love how they perform and look, so I created an opportunity for myself and ended up collaborating with Clown - from here our projects have kept evolving.

Q: WHAT’S THE STORY BEHIND LULA LAORA?

lula laora behind the scenes photo shoot model dress

A: LULA LAORA is an inclusive label. We share and welcome our world with anyone that wishes to join our adventure. For our brand launch, we used actors to create a fantasy world that appeals to people from all walks of life. The launch encapsulated the vision of LULA LAORA where people can come together to be surprised, shocked, inspired and have a laugh.

Each design has its own story. You’ll find movie references in all my pieces, from Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory (1971 - my favourite), to The Devil’s Advocate (also at the top of my list). Each character behind a piece is usually very strong and self-confident. The balance between characters with power and wickedness inspires me to create pieces that combine elegance and extravagance.

Q: TELL ME MORE ABOUT THE MANUFACTURING OF THE CLOTHES.  

A: For now, almost everything is made in London at the office. In addition to this, I worked with a factory in LA called TEG The Evans Group who don’t mass produce to a large extent.

Q: WHERE DOES LULA LAURA STAND WITH SUSTAINABILITY?

behind the scenes, Lula laora, models, covid SS21

A: We are mostly made in London, so that’s a start. Like actually made in London, not just designed and cut. I will say that it is crucial that I keep educating myself as we grow in terms of sustainability. 

The fabrics we use for our collections are mostly all sustainable. 45% of our pieces are made from upcycled clothes. The ink we use for our prints for our last collection are non-toxic and sustainable. 

In addition to this, we use scraps from each season to create limited edition pieces. We don’t waste anything. The rest of the fabric scraps are given to crisis.org.uk, it’s a charity. In total, I would say we spend our scraps on 30% charity and 70% limited edition pieces. 

Q: HOW DO YOU WANT PEOPLE FEEL ABOUT THE BRAND?

Lula Laora, white lace boots, shoes, model, pink skirt, pink outfit, photoshoot

A: I think they see it as a fantasy. And a bold place. A safe space for self-expression where you can experiment. Everyone is welcome. It's inviting even though it is a little eccentric. 

Hopefully, they feel strong and cool as a part of the Lula Laora extravagant expression. Wearing something “out there” can be a scary feeling. It's humbling to take the step but once you do, it starts feeling normal rather quickly. It’s all about getting out of your comfort zone and being vulnerable - there’s so much self-truth to embrace and it’s quite beautiful.  

I’d like people to feel confident and as close to their true selves when they wear my clothes.

Clothes are like a second skin, in the morning when you wake up and choose your outfit, I want it to be something that makes you feel good. I want it to be something that makes you feel alighned with yourself, with your values and feel like what you’d dream to feel like.

Q: WHO WEARS THE CLOTHES? 

lula laora model makeup behind the scenes

A: People have a good sense of humour, push their limits and laugh at themselves. That includes women, men, gender neutral, gender fluid, everyone and anyone who likes the vibe. I also have outfits for dogs, so for those who like to match with their canine friends, as well. 

Just as a quick FYI, on the LULA LAORA website we have menswear, womenswear and a pet swear section. Oh! And we also have a bridal section, some of our white outfits are solid options for the bride who wants to re-wear her outfit - sustainability! 

Q: WHAT IS YOUR UNIQUE SELLING POINT?

A: How versatile yet eccentric the pieces are. It's a rare dichotomy. The LULA LAORA collections might look quite niche but I think that the pieces are actually very versatile and can fit a huge group of people. 

What I have noticed is that when someone puts together an outfit, there is always a piece or two that you add to make it personal, to stand out.

Q: DESCRIBE YOUR CUSTOMERS IN A COUPLE OF WORDS.  

lula laora behind the scenes photo shoot pink jumpsuit

A: Someone open-minded, fun, likes to push the limits, experiment and someone who is cultivated, fresh with a young spirit and just fucking cool.

Q: WHAT ARE YOR CUSTOMERS DOING WHEN WEARING THE CLOTHES?

A: Loving their life. 

Q: WHAT MOTIVATES YOU TO WORK HARD?

A: There are so many talented individuals out there that you have to work hard to make an impact. There’s really no secret to success. I also work hard because I want the brand and story to be sustainable and last a long time. 

My designs are true to who I am and my values - this is what I’m most proud of. They each translate a part of my world. A world that has fantasies, realities, love and pain. It’s all of those things together that help me grow in life and that’s what I want to transparently share with others.

Q: WHAT IS YOUR DEFINITION OF SUCCESS? 

model mesh top Lula Laora pink makeup

A: Success is when you feel happy within yourself, when you go to sleep at night knowing that your life is in line with your values. 

Staying true to yourself is the key to your success. It can be hard because we live in a world that constantly bombards us with images and information that can make us doubt ourselves and our work. Doubting ourselves, however, is very healthy - it shows open-mindedness and the reality that one can always do better and push themselves more. 

Doubting becomes unhealthy when it paralyses you and stops you from working. You start overthinking and potentially not staying true to yourself. When you’ve reached that state of mind, just pause and tell yourself you can overthink for a whole day but that won’t help you know the answer. Start working and taking actions that will slow the over-doubting and also lead you to a solution.

Q: WHAT'S YOUR LIFE MOTTO? 

A: Do your best and fuck the rest. 

 


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