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Scandinavian womenswear designer Eyglo: New S/S 2012 Season Presentation Preview and Interview

S/S 2012 sees the sixth collection from Icelandic-based label, Eglyo. I caught up with designer Eyglo Magret Larusdottir to discuss the new collection and future plans for boutique collective, Kiosk.

Written by Sarah Deane

Eyglo S/S 2012 by Aysim Genc
Eyglo S/S 2012 by Aysim Genc.

Eyglo Magret has been designing clothes since the age of 17. Graduating from the Iceland Academy of Arts in 2005 with a degree in Fashion Design, artistic Eyglo went on to intern with a number of highly respected fashion houses including Bernhard Willhelm, threeAsFOUR and Jeremy Scott – an impressive start, not to mention formidable resume for a first time graduate.

I first met Eyglo during Paris Fashion Week and instantly decided that I liked both her and her small, but expertly designed collection. Following our conversation, I discovered the thinking and creative process behind her refreshingly original concepts: talk dinosaur themes and sea-green hair and you’ve got my attention. 

Eyglo by Aysim Genc
Eyglo S/S 2012 by Aysim Genc.

Eyglo’s collections are often described as feminine and timeless with a signature nudge nudge, wink wink thrown in for added humour. I was drawn to the architectural simplicity of each piece for S/S 2012, particularly the sporty, easy to wear shapes found on funnel neck coats and wide fitting dresses; a big trend for next year if Paris’s spring/summer trade shows are anything to go by. Always one for working with natural fabrics, Eylgo is continuously reinventing her approach towards detail and pattern cutting, often giving a slight futuristic feel to her impishly charming creations that wouldn’t be out of place in a Tim Burton-esque fantasy.

Eyglo S/S 2012
Eyglo S/S 2012
Not only is 28-year-old Eylgo Magret a creative soul, but she also has one heck of a business orientated head on her shoulders. In 2010, she and nine other designers set up Icelandic-based boutique collective, Kiosk. The store pulls together a group of young designers under one roof offering something new and original to the fashion conscious youth of Reykjavik, Iceland.

Parallel to that of the Icelandic fashion scene itself, Eyglo has slowly but surely been creeping into the world’s international fashion radar over the past few years. Following our brief chat in Paris, I couldn’t resist the opportunity to speak to the Scandinavian designer in more depth about the direction for S/S 2012 and what the future holds for Icelandic brainchild, Kiosk.

Eyglo S/S 2012
Eyglo S/S 2012
After graduating from the Iceland Academy of Arts you interned with Jeremy Scott. How was it working with him, and what did you take away from the experience?

It was great! But the best part was probably the people that were there at the same time – Gerlan from Gerlan Jeans and Ingrid Gutto who is now the head designer for Alexander Wang Menswear. It was also amazing staying in the Hollywood hills with small deer, raccoons, skunks and other funny little animals running around outside the studio. I was mainly involved in pattern cutting and costume making, but I also got to design a dress for Madonna and Fischerspooner whilst I was there. I was also lucky enough to intern with ThreeASFOUR and Bernhard Willhelm. Each experience was completely different to the next. I’m really into experimental pattern making and I was lucky enough to be involved with different ways of acting out this process at three different companies.

Eyglo by Katie Gill
Eyglo S/S 2012 by Katie Gill.

You designed a dress for Madonna! Did you get to meet the lady herself?

No, I didn’t get to meet Madonna unfortunately; she had an assistant running around for her. I just got hold of the measurements and a reference picture and did my thing, but she did wear the dress in one of her music videos so I guess I fulfilled my duty! 
Which other designers do you look to for direction?
It can vary from season to season, but usually Givenchy, Lanvin, Mary Karantzou and many more. It’s always nice to look to the graduation collections from Central Saint Martins as well.

Eyglo S/S 2012 by Grace Duignan-Pearson
Eyglo S/S 2012 by Grace Duignan-Pearson.
What’s the inspiration behind your S/S 2012 collection?
It all stems from when my son came home from the library with a dinosaur book one day. That’s where I got the idea for the pattern and pleats, and I also scanned my own hair onto silk satin dresses. The collection has a bit of a sporty, animalistic vibe to it I guess.  
You and nine other designers co-own the Icelandic boutique store, Kiosk. Where did the idea behind the venture come from?
I’d originally been selling in KronKron and Liborius here in Reykjavik for some time; they’re both really nice boutiques so I had nothing to complain about. The whole idea for Kiosk came from my friend and we grouped together. Now it’s possible for me to sell my products cheaper, and I get more in my pocket at the end of the day. The nicest thing is that you get to stay in much better contact with your customers, for special orders and so on. We work one day a week each, split the rent and have a lot of fun being a group. We’re taking in three new brands at the beginning of November, whilst two of the original owners take a break to work on other things. I’d recommend this way of doing business for all young designers, it takes up a lot of time but pays back in so many ways in the end.

Eyglo S/S 2012 by Katie Gill
Eyglo S/S 2012 by Katie Gill.

Iceland is becoming more and more known for its emerging talent. Recession aside, what do you think the future holds for the Icelandic fashion scene?
It’s slowly growing. I remember when I was a teenager there was only mall shops and one second hand store – that was it! I guess that was the reason why I went into fashion design. I couldn’t find any clothes that were interesting enough for me. I graduated in 2005, and that was only the second year of graduates studying fashion in Iceland. Just 10-20% of each year’s graduates go on to actually do their own thing. We’ve held Reykjavik Fashion Festival twice now and hopefully it will be held again early next year. The event managed to get a lot of press here last time and I wouldn’t hesitate in taking part again.

Eyglo S/S 2012
Eyglo S/S 2012
When did you first decide that you wanted to be a fashion designer?
I was 17 and studying at business school – ha! It almost happened over a night and I’ve never looked back since. Not once. There’s nothing else that I would like to do, this is it. 
Eyglo S/S 2012 by Grace Duignan-Pearson
Eyglo S/S 2012 by Grace Duignan-Pearson.

How would you describe the typical Eyglo girl?
Clothing wise, I would say playful and classic but a total nerd! Though a happy and a confident nerd at that.  

What’s next for Eyglo?
I’m currently working on my designs for A/W 2012. I’m looking into crop circles; clearly I’ve been watching too many ancient aliens programs. I wouldn’t be surprised if I started a cult before the collection is actually shown, ha!


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