Lana Fuchs is a Russian born fashion designer and the designer of Lana Fuchs Couture, the lifestyle brand Billionaire Mafia and the founder of Emerald Dream foundations, a charitable non-profit organization. In this interview, Lana Fuchs chats with Marta Walsh about her trip to India and how it drove her to finally pursue her dream to become a fashion designer, her inspiration behind the Lana Fuchs Couture Spring/Summer 2009 Collection “Rhapsody In Boom” presented at LA Fashion Week, her dreams to dress Middle America and help women to feel good about themselves, how she would love to dress Cindy McCain, and her fascination with legendary fashion designer Coco Chanel.
|When did you fascination with fashion begin?
My fascination with fashion began probably when I was eight years old, when I moved to the US with my parents from Russia. We settled in Brighton Beach, Brooklyn New York. We moved into a terrible studio apartment. It was the classic immigrant story, we all have them. I was an overweight child and didn’t speak English which led to a somewhat hard time in school. My uncle bought me a Barbie Doll for my ninth birthday. My life has changed. I began living my life vicariously through Barbie. I felt that Barbie’s clothes were not good enough for her. I use to cut my mom’s curtains and her vinyl table cloths and turn them into pretty clothes which I sewed by hand. This is when I decided that when I grow up I want to be in fashion. But when I grew up I wasn’t allowed to go to school to study fashion because it wasn’t considered a real education by my parents. They wanted me to be stable and have a steady profession. I ended doing everything they wanted me to do. To make long story short, when I turned 33 I went on a trip to India for a month. I was at a good place financially and with my family but I didn’t feel I was fulfilled. When I came back from India I knew what I had to do. I quit everything and I told my family I was planning to do what I love, which is fashion. I never wanted to live with the notion’ I should have could have.’ I never looked back!What was the first garment you have ever designed as the Lana Fuchs Couture?
I first began making clothes for myself. Everywhere I went people used to compliment me for what I wore and asked where they can buy it. I ended up making one of a kind gowns and various outfits for others. I have pictures of every garment I have ever designed. The first gown I designed was a beautiful ball gown in black and burgundy for a friend of mine. We were going to the same party in Europe through an organization called YPO, which my husband and I belong to. It is a group of about 11,000 or 12,000 members worldwide. As a member of YPO we travel to various countries with educational programs during the day, and amazing and fabulous parties and formal balls at night. The fist dress I’ve designed was for a YPO woman.
“I would like to dress Middle America. There is a great need for affordable yet nice clothes. With just a few great pieces of clothes women everywhere can feel so much better about themselves.”
How would you describe the Lana Fuchs fashion line?
The Lana Fuchs fashion line is timely and timeless for the woman who has arrived.
Where do you draw the inspiration from for your designs?
I love to travel and I travel a lot. I have a fascination for exploring new courtiers and new cultures. Every time I leave a country I take something from it. What I have learned is that there are different standards for beauty in every single country. But the most amazing thing I’ve discovered is that one common denominator for all these women around the world is their femininity. This is why many of the Lana Fuchs dresses are very feminine. For example my latest collection for spring 2009 “The Rhapsody in Bloom” was inspired by the sites of Giverny France from the gardens of Monet mixed with colors of Indian women working in the field. I observe and study how women are and what they wear to different occasions all around the world. Every woman is an inspiration to me.
Who do you see wearing the Lana Fuchs clothes?
The Lana Fuchs fashion line is for women from age 20 to 60 who are interested in wearing classic and elegant clothes as opposed to following trends. These are women who have developed their own sense of style, and know what they like and what looks best on them. She could be a woman from all walks of life: a homemaker, an attorney, or a doctor. In Hollywood, I would love to see Sophia Loren, Angelina Jolie, and Nicole Kidman wearing the Lana Fuchs Couture. I also would have loved to see Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis in one of my dresses. And, Cindy McCain would be perfect. Cindy is so classy and elegant, always well put together.
What would be your biggest achievement as a fashion designer?
I would like to dress Middle America. There is a great need for affordable yet nice clothes. With just a few great pieces of clothes women everywhere can feel so much better about themselves. That confidence in women comes across and it is so evident.
Who are some of your favorite fashion designers?
My personal favorite fashion designer is Coco Chanel, I always used to look up to her even as a child. Coco Chanel has managed to achieve international recognition through so much adversity and obstacles. She left an important mark in the world which doesn’t end in just fashion. Coco taught women how to be independent and to think outside the box. She also taught women around the world to wear clothes that are comfortable and not fit into what is expected of them to wear. I also like Armani, Valentino, Yves Saint Laurent, and Christian Dior.
How would you describe your own personal style?
I describe my personal style as timely and timeless pieces with an attitude.
What’s next for Lana Fuchs?
I would like my clothes to be available at department stores and specialty boutiques. And, hopefully next season I would like to show my collection in New York Fashion Week.
It was a pleasure to interview Lana you can find out more about her fashion line at her official website: www.lanafuchs.com/ and her other sites: Billionaire Mafia and Emerald Dream Foundation.