Friday, April 15, 2011

Who Is Art: Ohhh Lulu

I consider myself a fairly modern girl, but I have a huge weakness for vintage florals and anything involving ruffles, so I was head over heals when I was fortunate enough to come across Ohhh Lulu on Etsy.

Abigail Ruffled Floral Bloomer Panties by Ohhh Lulu

Sarah, the brainchild behind Ohhh Lulu, has filled her shop with the sweetest assortment of handmade rompers, panties, camisoles and bras. She infuses each item she makes with a handmade aesthetic, pulling inspiration from her small town, rural surroundings, vintage clothing and her own imagination!

And, she's consented to be the guinea pig for my new weekly feature, Who Is Art, which is really just my way of getting into the heads of the handmade designers and artists who have me insanely jealous and completely in awe of their talents. Read on for the interview...

Gauzy Cabbage Rose Romper by Ohhh Lulu

Sarah, you mention that you initially tried to leave your small hometown of Orillia in Ontario, Canada, but that it has now become a source of inspiration for you. What changed?

It is really hard being a teenager with artistic aspirations in a rural area. When I graduated from high school, I couldn’t wait to leave, and eventually found myself living in Toronto where I studied Fashion Design at George Brown College, and eventually found work in the interior design & textile industry. I often went back to visit my parents and family on weekends. One of those weekends, I ran into the man of my dreams - an old high school flame! We started dating the following week and held a long distance relationship for just over a year, before I decided to quit my job, give up my apartment and move back to my small town. Now that I am older, I appreciate the beauty of my surroundings so much more. We are so fortunate to have lakes and forests and beautiful beaches at our doorstep. I am also inspired by the silence here, it is so nice to be able to hear your own thoughts!

Orillia Waterfront in Ontario, Canada

Polka Dots and Stripes Forever One Piece Romper Bodysuit by Ohhh Lulu

You seem to have found the perfect balance between a very comfortable, classic simplicity and the sweetness of ruffles and bows. Does your work reflect your personal style and to what degree?

My personal style is definitely reflected in Ohhh Lulu. Although I don’t always get to wear the outfits I would like to wear at my day job doing reception at a mechanics shop! I do like to pair unexpected items together - a simple tank top with, a frilly, printed full skirt, or a simple sheath dress with a really bold scarf. I like to have one item that really stands out.

Tied With a Bow Silk and Cotton Bandeau Bra Top by Ohhh Lulu

4 Styles in 1 Cotton Eyelet and Silk Accessory Panties by Ohhh Lulu

There is usually a story behind the start of any company and your line feels like it may have a great story to tell. How did Ohhh Lulu get started?

I started Ohhh Lulu partially out of desperation to do something creative. I had spent my life doing all of the things I felt were expected of me, but not doing any of the things I really wanted to do. Running my own business was something I had always dreamed of doing. It wasn’t until I met my fiance, who helped me gain the courage and confidence to really jump into it, that I decided I might have a real chance. So, I cut back on my hours at my Day Job and sat myself down in front of my sewing machine. As cheesy as it sounds, I did a lot of soul searching to find out what really inspires me; history, textiles, flowers, femininity, subtle details... I like to think I have combined all of these loves in Ohhh Lulu.

My blog tells the story of Ohhh Lulu from day one. It is really interesting to see how my first pair of panties have evolved into what I am doing today. 

Reversible Floral Sash by Ohhh Lulu

Frivolous Gathered Lace Ruffle Bloomer Panties by Ohhh Lulu

Handmade artists are so connected to their work. What hopes and dreams do you have for Ohhh Lulu in the future? How do you see her growing and changing?

My biggest goal for the immediate future is to expand Ohhh Lulu into some more boutiques throughout Ontario, and establish my own website, aside from my Etsy store. Right now, I am working Ohhh Lulu along with my full time job. I am hoping to expand my reach far enough that I can work on Ohhh Lulu alone. I am also hoping to expand into some swim wear and a clothing line, in the same aesthetic as my lingerie line. My main priority is to always keep production in limited, handmade runs at a reasonable price. 

Printemps Button and Bows Floral Cotton Bra-lette by Ohhh Lulu

How do you feel that Ohhh Lulu has changed your life, if at all?

Ohhh Lulu has changed my live immensely. The response I have gotten from my work has been so positive, it inspires me to work a little harder every day, and challenge myself to try new things. I can’t describe how great it feels to really be living out a childhood dream.

Tuxedo Frill Floral and Lace Chemise Camisole by Ohhh Lulu

Anything else you would love to share about your work or life that I didn’t cover in the questions?

Your questions were great and I really enjoyed this interview! Thank you for the opportunity to share a little about myself and my work. The response I have gotten to Ohhh Lulu has really been great, and it gives me such a sense of fulfillment. 

Button Up Summer Floral Playsuit Romper by Ohhh Lulu

I adore Ohhh Lulu and Sarah is so absolutely lovely! You can find out more about her work at the links below. I know I will be stalking her shop in anticipation of her swimwear line! 

Stop by next Friday for our chat with Cara, whose work is a subtle mix of the technological with the natural and scientific with a shop full of drawings and prints inspired by joyful things, bold, simply composed, spirited things. Sneak a peek at her shop, Floodplain Studio, then join us for her Who Is Art feature.

And please feel free to send a note if you or your work have a story to tell!

Much (Petal) Love,

PetalPetal designs and VintageChild:Modern


Dora said...

These are so pretty.The panties are just adorable:)

PetalPetal said...

Sarah has so much talent! I loved hearing about her inspirations for her sweet designs!


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