Louise Ravnløkke,25. Kolding School of Design, 3th year textile project.
-specialism: Mixed Media.
I went to a high school specializing in construction within fashion and architecture. Afterwards I went to Skals School of Design and Needlework, which is a textile handcraft school. It was here I got aware of my passion for textiles. As a part of my preparations for a school of design, I took drawing lessons at School of Visual Art – Art & Design in Aarhus, and I got in to Kolding School of Design.
In 2007 I assisted Saeed Fadavi on a sculptural project for the Harvest festival in Aarhus in Denmark. Since then I have assisted Isabel Berglund on the project Knitted Chimney for Copenhagen Fashion Week SS09.
What was the most valuable you learned before starting at your education?
I learned tools and methods for expressing myself visually.
The project is an exposition of the Romanian folklore. The inspiration comes from the traditional Romanian costume and is put into a modern context. My focus has been on the details and the contrasts, in the rich history of the country, which is build on a number of traditional handcrafts and the beauty and possibilities of the nature.
I Especially wanted to illustrate the contrast in the Romanian way of using materials, for example the combination of animal fur, which has a very raw expression, and exclusive fine detail embroidery. Besides the materials the tradition shows a beautiful range of colors that together with the patterns and forms gives a harmonious look.
Where do you get inspiration from in general?
Often I feel inspired of surfaces and contrast and material differences in a surface. Colors inspire me a lot, especially edgy colors.
What are your strengths?
My strengths are that I am patient, a perfectionist whom is good at keeping focus to reach my goal, and accomplish the ideas I have in mind. I have a passion for historical techniques, and therefore have a naturally curiosity for experimenting with new ones.
What are your weaknesses?
My Weaknesses are that I am a perfectionist, and therefore it is difficult for me to leave things, that I am working at, even though there is not enough time to continue. Some times I can be to fast at making a decision. I would like to be better at studying one area at the time.
Describe your collection with three words?
Complexity, volume, detail.
What techniques did you use:
Belt: machine knit with a lacer cut lace
Dress: Digital print, folio print, hand smock and embroidery
Accessory: Screen print with different types of binders and embroidery
Which technique was the most difficult?
Swell print, it was difficult to control and get the surface that I wanted.
Do you have a technical or conceptual approach to designing?
I would say some of both. It depends on were I am in the process. The conceptual part is often in the beginning of a project, and the technical part often inspires me in the idea process.
Which piece was most difficult to make?
It must be the dress. Every step had to be thought through in order to each other. For example it was important that the first step was the digital print. Afterwards some parts had to be sewn together, before the embroidery, but not all the parts. Some had to be sewn together afterwards, and etc.
Which piece took the longest to make?
It was not a specific piece, but more the technique. It was definitely the hand embroidery, since the stitches lies completely close, and in some part in two layers.
Which piece is your favorite?
My favorite piece is the accessory pendant. It is the piece that shows my inspiration the most, and it discloses my fascination of material collision. The collection of different tactility seems to give me a strong impression of senses.
What technique is your favorite?
In this case, it was the swell print. Normally I think it has a disgusting surface. And for a fashion relation it is not very durable. But in this case I think it works very well, especially in connection with the wool embroidery yarn.
This was the first time I tried the technique, and the binder seemed unpredictable, as if it had its own way. It was of course frustrating, but still this gave an organic expression, and show references to the growth and nature.
How long did you work on this project?
Is there something you regret not doing in your collection?
This project was very much about the materials, and getting into the materials. But I would still have liked to combine the 3D with 2D in all stages of the project.
What made you pursue your specialism?
Since I have described it as mixed media, it has a lot to do with materials and the techniques. I am very fascinated by what happens when several materials and techniques are combined. In that way I think you can reach giving and unique expressions.
Why did you choose your specific college?
I went for a visit and like very much what I saw and met. I felt welcome, and could see myself studying there, so I applied!
What did you think of the education?
When I dreamed of being admitted to Kolding School of Design, I really wanted to learn a textile craft. During the education that dream has chanced. Today I see a great value in using my textile knowledge in a general design relation.
And by this I mean, that the school is good at teaching us our possibilities as designers.
During your education, which project has been your favorite?
I did my favorite project at 2nd year. It was not the project it self, but the things I learned doing it.
The project was about finding the passion for collecting, and using the passion to design a collection. I made one of the pieces in 1:2. The piece was a wall/floor carpet that gives you the feeling of having everything you like, all in one piece. In that way it is a very sense giving carpet.
One of the things I learned doing the project were working in large scale. Even though the format was 1:2, it is still the largest I have made. Another thing is more personal. I became more aware of how I see myself as a designer, and how I work around a project.
What advice would you give new students?
Having patience, and believing in your self, that no mater your level of frustration, your inspiration will take you somewhere.
Which fellow students would you like to highlight?
I would like to highlight Lea Zaar who is studying fashion design at Kolding School of Design. I admire her way of working and the results coming out of it. She is very productive and experimental. She always has incomprehensible many inspirational objects, which she makes herself, and therefore gives her complete own idiom.
I would also like to highlight Marie Udby Blicher who just as I are in 3rd of studying textile design. She is impressive at transforming 3D into 2D, and the other way around.
Where can we find more information on you?
My website will soon be up and running.