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Lucire: Fashion

The golden middle

Irena Lane is a talented womenswear designer based in London’s South Bank, her label Lagom drawing inspiration from classic feminine silhouettes, 1950s elegant dresses and quirky detailing. Elina Lukas spoke with her about her designs and plans for the future
Photographed by the author
Modelled by Kathryn Robbins, Carys Evans and Efrosinya Filonich
Make-up and hair by Emma Gorbey and Kathryn Robbins


Lucire: What is the key feature of the clothes you create and who is it most suitable for?

Irena Lane: I would say the versatility of my clothes and also quirky retro references are making my collections stand out from the rest. The garments are suitable for anybody who values individual dressing without the need to hunt down the latest trend. Lagom is about pursuing your own, unique style.


How did you establish your label?

I started Lagom because I wanted to bring women the sense of comfort, individuality and quirky charm. I felt that there were not enough brands out there which combined these factors with great quality and reasonable prices. So that’s how Lagom was born—out of the idea to make girls look and feel their best!


What does Lagom mean?

Lagom is a Swedish word that does not have a direct translation into English. In context it can mean ‘the golden middle’, ‘just right’ or ‘in good balance’. And this is basically, our ethos for the brand—make things just “so”.


What usually inspires you to create a new garment?

Inspiration can come from unexpected angles. It never has a set pattern. It could be a great film to inform a general mood or era to reference for the collections, an interesting painting, or a coffee stain on the napkin to get a nice colour combination, [or] flowers in the park for fabric texture. Really anything. I love to people-watch, too—I get many ideas from movements and expressions.


Out of the garments you created, which one you would say is your favourite?

It changes every season! At the moment I am loving the Alicia Bird Dress.


What first prompted you to love fashion and become a designer?

I cannot remember a time when I didn’t like fashion. I think that love was always with me. My mother was (and is) very fashion-aware and her style influenced me from a young age. I knew I would work in fashion one way or another.


Where are you planning to take your label and what plans do you have for the nearest future?

Lagom is always evolving. I think it is important to move with the changing times. The plans at the moment are to open a second boutique, introduce an occasionwear range for spring–summer 2013 and we are also working on our own shoe and bag ranges. Watch this space!


Do you have a fashion icon?

There are too many to name! Edie Sedgwick, Madonna, Marlene Dietrich, Coco Chanel are just a few inspirational figures. I tend to look to the past for icons.


What piece of advice can you give to those who are just starting out in the fashion industry?

Find your own style; protect and nurture it. Be open to criticism, but don’t let it disillusion you—see it as free advice. Don’t be afraid of failure—it is part of the creative process. And, finally, work harder than you think you can! •

Sarmite Ostanevica

Inspiration can come from unexpected angles. It never has a set pattern. It could be a great film to inform a general mood or era to reference for the collections, an interesting painting or a coffee stain on the napkin to get a nice colour combination









Elina Lukas is a correspondent and photographer for Lucire.






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