Designer Laurinda Sutcliffe from Loobie's Story.
Laurinda Sutcliffe created her popular label Loobie's Story in 2010 to create a line inspired by her love of travel and telling a story through clothing. Her gorgeous ranges have quickly gained a loyal following and Loobie's Story now has stockists throughout New Zealand and Australia which include some of the country's top boutiques and department stores.
We caught up with Laurinda to find out more about her label, what inspires her and what you would never catch her wearing!
Tell us about your latest collection?
This season, we drew inspiration from the iconic rail journey on the Orient Express, running from Paris to Istanbul and taking in beautiful and exotic locations along the way. We established four key themes that explore the aesthetics at the heart of the journey; Modern Tribe, 70’s Revival, Neo Classical and East Meets West. Overall, the range is a progression to a more grown up and sophisticated Loobie’s Story. Whilst some of the prints and designs are reminiscent of our indie/folk beginning, but have taken more of a glamourous step forward and embodied a sense of luxury and sophistication. We’ve taken more risks and used new technologies/processes in the design – so I’m really excited to see the consumers reaction!
What made you become a designer?
Becoming a designer was somewhat of a gradual evolution for me. I started out and spent many years working in the retail management and merchandising side of the industry, rather than design/ manufacturing. One thing lead to another and I was offered an amazing role here in NZ, to lead the design for a new label under ‘High Society’. I’ve never looked back since!
What inspires you?
One of my biggest passions is travel and the exotic! Each and every collection from Loobie’s Story has been inspired by a beautiful location that I have either visited, aspire too, or in the case of AW16, imagine. I’m fascinated by different cultures and their unique offerings. I like to think this what keeps our ranges fresh and exciting for the consumer – they don’t get the same old!
Describe your personal style and how it influences your products and brand?
I generally dress in quite soft, pretty colours and love to add lots of layers and textures. Luxurious fabrics like silk and cashmere are a favourite of mine, teamed back with more hard wearing/everyday pieces like a great boyfriend jean or military style jacket. Comfort always plays an equal part along with style in my outfit choices. Although I don’t design for myself per say, my style is definitely reflected in Loobie's ranges and the way we style the garments. I embody many traits of our target market, so I always try to take my needs and wants into consideration when designing.
Campaign images from Loobie's Story AW16 collection.
What is your all-time favourite purchase?
A beautiful butter soft pair of pale taupe ankle boots with a very subtle metallic finish, that I purchased from one of my favourite boutiques in LA. I have absolutely thrashed them and will be heart broken when they get so shabby I can’t wear them any more
What wardrobe item should every woman invest in?
A well-made, classic silk shirt is without a doubt a worthy investment for every woman. I have quite the array of white silk blouses, (probably more than I care to admit) and always seem to reach for them in the closet! It’s a staple basic that can be dressed up for work and dressed down for the weekend.
Do you have a style rule you always obey?
I think as fashion is forever changing, I don’t have one rule that I always stick to. As a general guideline though, I think women should put less focus on trends and dress more with their personal style and figure type in mind. The right cut of pant or style of top, or a great fitting jacket can make all the difference in the world when it comes to dressing to impress!
What has been the highlight of your career so far?
Being able to launch my own business with my husband Brent, has definitely been the highlight so far. I never saw myself in this position, until I was made redundant 6 years ago so the fact that Loobie’s has been so successful, is really just the icing on the cake!
What can’t you live without?
My family – we work, play and live together! They are my constant support system and I’d be absolutely lost without them!
Finish this sentence – You would never catch me wearing…
Black! I think NZ as a whole, dresses a lot in black, but I like to base my outfits around Indigo, and more earthy tones instead. Even in winter!
Lookbook images from Loobie's Story AW16 collection.
Images from Loobie's Story