Erin Barr is a New York based fashion designer. Her clothes are impeccably cut. The collection shown below is for Fall Winter 12, and the inspiration behind the collection is the idea of this Angel who has fallen to the Earth, and is stuck in purgatory at the Boardwalk. There is this contrast between the dark and light, the soft and hard, and the pure and impure. Most of the fabrics are luxury silks, wools, and cotton blends. The lace is a silver embroidered lace, and the embroidery is hand-cut leather and silk paillettes on top of Indian tulle.
Erin was very much into the idea of contrasting this darker girl with the pure, honest one, in this collection. There is still the sense of ease that you saw in the Spring Summer 12 collection, but this time she brought a bit more softness into the mix, which was inspired by the fabrics and the moodboard a lot, as well. Here we catch up with Erin for a little bit of personal insight into her life.
What do you do and how did you end up doing it? Fashion designer- womenswear.
Gradually the steps I took in previous years led me to the ultimate ‘ah-ha’ moment when you know you are just supposed to do something. First, I went to college for fine art (painting/sculpture), but then I started doing hair and makeup after attending Aveda in Minneapolis. Being from Wisconsin, fashion design wasn’t really a career path accepted there. I gravitated towards it by doing hair/makeup because I would look at magazines constantly and just be enamored by the editorials I would see. Then I moved to NYC, and it just became obvious that I wanted more, and that I COULD do more. So I went back and finished my BFA in Fashion Design. It was risky to do, leaving my career behind, but it’s the best decision I’ve made so far.
What are you working on at the moment? Right now we are starting Fall ’12 production, while simultaneously starting the Spring/Summer ’13 collection… which I am so excited about!
Who are your favorite artists/designers at the moment? My favorite artists are Rauschenburg, Frank Stella and Cy Twombly. I love their works. As far as fellow fashion designers, I’m always watching what is happening. Lately I can’t get enough of J.W. Anderson out of London. I want all of those clothes!
Where can we find your clothes? Right now Spring/Summer ’12 can be purchased on wondermode. Then Fall/Winter ’12 will hit a few stores in the US and in Jakarta in August/September this year…
How would you describe your design process? I’m such a visual person, so I always start with loads of inspiration (photos, tear sheets, texture, etc.), then I move to into deciding color and fabric. And I go from there!
What makes you laugh? My dog, Birdie. He is the funniest little guy and has so much personality.
What are your 4 favorite things about living in NY? The fact that I don’t need a car and can just ride my bike or the subway anywhere, the great food/restaurants, the access to amazing art/museums, and of course, the fashion.
What’s your favorite NY hangout? Mother’s or Pete’s Candy in Brooklyn.
Are you a tea of coffee person? Coffee, definitely.
What inspires you? Travel, films, music, family, and friends.
Where’s your perfect place to get down with a good book? My perfect place is in my bed, pajamas on, all noise off.
Best advice you’ve been given? Who was it by? My brother once told me, ‘just do what’s best for YOU’, because I can tend to be a ‘people pleaser’ and it stresses me out. It’s important to have control over your life, and I try to remember that.
Favorite film? “Lost In Translation”
You can wear 3 designers for the rest of your life. Who are they? YSL, J.W. Anderson, Celine.
Last fashion disaster? My favorite Rag & Bone silk top ended up in the dryer recently and shrunk two sizes. Oops!
What is the most exciting thing that has happened to you? It would have to be when my fiance, artist Anton Zolotov, proposed.
What’s on your bedside table? A biography on Peggy Guggenheim.
What do you never leave the house without? My cell phone and keys.
Whats the craziest thing you’ve seen in NY? I’ve seen a lot of crazy things in the 8 years that I’ve lived here. And this isn’t necessarily crazy, But the one that comes to mind right away is a homeless girl drugged out on heroine holding a puppy on the subway while she nodded off. And the puppy just kept licking her, like he really loved her. Just the contrast of her being homeless, nodding off on drugs, but then this puppy had all of this love…that’s the stuff that just throws me.
Whats your token dish that you cook for friends? I don’t have a ‘token dish’, but I do make a mean Margarita, which are great for the hot NY summers.