FASHION PROFILE Interview with Tina Lutz and Marcia Patmos of Lutz & Patmos
How would you describe your line? L&P: I would describe it as a full collection but only made out of knitwear. We do everything from winter jackets to superfine layering pieces and work a lot with ecological wool, organic cotton and cashmere. The Lutz & Patmos girl is really ageless. It’s really more of an attitude than an actual age. She doesn’t chase five-minute trends, she pays attention to detail and quality, and buys for years not seasons.
What is it about knits that you love? L&P: It’s one of those easy things to buy, like an emotional purchase. We all know that to buy a pair of pants you kind of need to feel good about yourself that day and you need to be in the mood to go into that dressing room to get undressed. Knits and sweaters are just really easy because sometimes you can just fold it up and it stretches and gives where it needs to. You can buy a really tight fitting sweater or you can also buy it a few sizes bigger if you want a more slouchy fit. We do sizes extra small to extra large to fit a wide variety of people.
Do you incorporate environmentally friendly fabrics into the design? L&P: We were both very ecologically aware even before we met and started using eco-friendly merino wool from Uruguay and alpaca wool from Peru a couple of seasons ago. It’s processed in a way that’s completely ecological. And we’re doing some things with recycled t-shirts that’s made into yarn and by products that we’re knitting into sweaters that would otherwise go to waste.
Can you talk about the fall collection—must-have’s and fave looks? L&P: Well our guest designer is Kirsten Dunst who designed a grandpa-inspired “Omi and Opi” mini dress that can also be worn as a long sweater and comes in metallic yarn. She’s half German and omi and opi translates into grandma and grandpa in German. The sweater reminded her of a sweater her grandfather in Hamburg would wear so she just made it sexier and more flattering. Plus twenty dollars of the proceeds go to a charity that involves artists and actors and musicians to help seriously ill children in hospitals to do art projects and musical products.
How did that whole line come about? L&P: We met her through a common friend and she was like ‘do you think they would take me?’ She was very sweet and easy to work with. She’s got such cute style and knew exactly what she wanted to do. She actually designed last summer when she was on her tour for Spider-Man. All of our guest designers choose their own charity so each time it’s a different one. So in the past we’ve had [FLARE cover girl] Julianne Moore design for the Tuberculosis foundation. Sofia Coppola for Operation Smile and Liv Tyler was Free Art.
Where would you like to take the label? L&P: We’d like to have our own store—probably first in New York.
What advice would you give to new designers? L&P: Trust your gut. It’s difficult as a new designer, you get a lot of outside advice. It’s hard at the beginning and the danger is to try to please everyone but in the end you have to believe in yourself. It’s good to listen to advice and some are very helpful but some you just have to let go and say it’s not for me.
What’s the best style advice you’ve ever received? L&P: We were told not to mix brown and navy together but then took it the opposite way and did these cool cardigans out of those colours. We were told that our shoes and the handbag had to match and we don’t follow that at all. We were told you can’t wear white after Labour Day. Which is definitely not true. So basically we’ve broken all of the fashion advice and rules we’ve ever gotten.
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