17th February 2019
Aeneas O’Hara (AOH): What made you want to work in fashion?
Lorna Gillies (LG): I was always interested in making my own clothes. Having the freedom of seeing an item of clothing and saying “I can make that for myself, but maybe in a different colour, or quality buttons, etc”. I was never particularly interested in fashion trends, of having a piece of clothing that’s only fashionable for one season seems crazy and wasteful to me. That’s why I’m more interested in slow fashion – making something from quality fabrics that is timeless.
AOH: How did you end up starting your own label?
LG: After studying Theatre Costume at college I worked in offices for a few years. I started doing alterations for colleagues in the office, which then progressed to selling dresses. I then moved to Melbourne, Australia where I worked for a couple of fashion labels. Getting this experience was fantastic, but I knew I wanted to work for myself. So in 2015 I returned back to the Highlands and started my business.
AOH: How would you describe your style?
LG: I use traditional materials to create a dreamy romantic style for women, but with a quirky flair. I am drawn to colours, tartans and history, which influence my work greatly.
AOH: What do you love most about what you do?
LG: I love working directly with the customer. I also offer an off-the-peg collection too, but I adore making something bespoke for the client and seeing them excited in their new garment. When someone is confident in what they wear, their whole posture changes – I love being able to help with that confidence.
AOH: What’s your insider tip for anyone visiting the Highlands?
LG: I’d say go in the autumn/winter time. Even on the worst stormy day, the Highlands looks breath taking….and the roads are a lot more quiet!
To find out more about Lorna and her incredible label, please visit www.lornagillies.com