Interview: Nicole Locher from Locher’s

by Emma Loggins

Taking inspiration from found objects from flea markets in Paris and London, Nicole Locher created her first collection by combining elements of vintage and modern fashion into a single concept. Nicole recognized the amazing beauty found in the embroidery done on a turn of the century handkerchief lost in some grandma’s drawer. She marveled at the technique and realized that embroidery done today was never of this quality. It became her mission to bring back the refinement of this embroidery style and to add it to shirts that would be in fashion today. To counterbalance the elegance and antiquity of the embroidery, she added the playful charm of a dirty saying embroidered into every shirt. This puts the youthfulness front and center to every top, making it something your Mother wouldn’t wear, and Daddy shouldn’t see. The basic concept behind her latest line is “perversion with a touch of class”.

How did you first start the Locher’s collection?

Since I worked for a long time as a passionate graphic designer I always wanted to combine this skill with my other great interest which is fashion and since I am a big perv (and tired of looking like a “a goody two shoes”) I didn’t had to think far to create my shirts and everything around it. The ideas came quite naturally to me. I just wanted to bring back the much needed self irony to this world which seems to have been forgotten for quite a long time ago. I like the idea of girls putting on one of my tops and to sort of “slip into a role” and act it out a little…….

Were you concerned at all that people would find it offensive? Have you had to deal with any of these people?

I highly respect other peoples opinion. I know my creations are not for everyone, I design to make myelf happy and to have a good laugh. There is a concept behind this line, some people will understand that concept and others will just see the crassness of what is written, and not see the counterbalance of the beauty and intricacy as well. My line has a very strong but subtle attitude, which to me is very feminine but in general I must say I just had the most amazing and positive feedback from people. Thanks a lot you guys!

Did growing up in a convent have any influence on your current designs? It almost seems like a fun rebellion of sorts!

Ooohhh yes, yes, I did spend part of my education in a Swiss convent and it was great! Being able to spend so much time with your girlfriends in the same house eating, sleeping and just being giggly, silly girls together was amazing. It was quite strict so and we got completely shielded from the outside world for quite some time and therefore couldn’t explore the world of “boys” the same way other girls could at our age. I guess this made us all much naughtier and boy crazy once we got out of there and I guess this is still part of me today. The flowery embroidery is definitely influenced by the amazing beauty of the swiss countryside I grew up in.

I think your pieces do a fantastic job at bringing out a woman’s freshness and her sense of humor. Did you have any specific inspirations in mind when you trying to bring these elements forward in your collection?

My inspiration comes in so many forms that its impossible to say. I love watching people. Love watching women when they sit in cafes with their friends talking and having a good time. Overhearing their conversations gives me many great idea for my sayings like ” Sorry darling, good girls don’t swallow” or ” I really need a fucking coffee”. I don’t have a particular person in mind when I design. It’s much more about an attitude and a spirit or a character. If you are a young women and you are a designer you design for the world that you know.

What’s your favorite piece personally in your collection?

“No time to fuck” because it came to my mind one night late when I was still slaving away behind my computer at home and when my husband came to me and wanted… you know what, and I was so stressed out that I basically screamed “I don’t have time to f***”…

What is fashion to you?
Fashion is about change and I like to imagine girls putting on my tops and slip into a role and act it out a little.

Who are your fashion idols?
Everyday people on the street mostly old ladies here in Paris. They just have a special way of putting clothes together.

What trends do you see becoming big for fall?
I never really follow popular trends however I do like to see what older women are wearing especially here in Paris older women still dress with such style and finesse that their trends are far more interesting to watch than whats happending in the “high fashion world” today. In fact a lot of my designs are inspired by the beginning of the 20th century with the delicate dresses, soft colors and the detailed embroideries.

What advice would you give to young people hoping to become fashion designers?
I know it sounds very cliche, but when you do what you are really passionate about follow it because you will be good at it. You should always find pleasure of what you do. I started as a graphic designer and ended up as a fashion designer without formal training, I thinks that says it all. Just make sure that you do something original.

What can we look forward to seeing next with your collection?
I like to surprise people.

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