Rakes Progress Magazine Interview with Louisa Parris


Dedicated to colour, line and drape, womenswear label Louisa Parris, creates silk pieces with strong graphic abstract elements. Louisa's visually-striking designs celebrate vibrant and bold colours, while remaining fuss-free and contemporary.

What can you see out of your window? Describe your view. I’m getting used to the view from my new studio – it’s not the prettiest since it looks out onto other buildings – but the windows are big so the light is amazing and we now have a bit more space. I’m very grateful for that.

What does a garden means to you? It means the future, the dream, the orangery. Ha Ha. We live in a lovely flat but no garden with two young children.

What’s in your garden - describe your outside space? (or balcony/windowsill!) In the front we have a very broken but beautiful Grade II listed Victorian path, with Geraniums and a Cotinus Coggygria Royal Purple (Smoke Bush) that is nearly 3 stories high. It’s an absolute joy to watch it change colour with the seasons.

Has lockdown changed the way you see it? Yes, it has made it clear that we need to make the leap and finally move, to have a garden for our minds and for our children.

How does the garden/natural world inspire your work? Colour, form, texture etc? Currently it would be colour... I’m constantly taking photos and go out of my way to go to gardens and seek new inspiration. Often these photos make it to the moodboards to help with colour combinations and prints for each new season. I’m a frustrated gardener, so whether it’s a trip to Kew Gardens, Gardens of Heligan in Cornwall or the botanical garden in Kauai, Hawaii when we were there on honeymoon. I will make bee-line in order to wander the greenhouses.

Describe beauty in one sentence? Ah too hard... but it’s personal and comes from a quick gut reaction.

silk scarf marc alcock

What’s your favourite plant or flower? Geraniums, the smell, the bold colour, the texture of the leaf and their silhouette. It’s also what I remember my grandparents and parents all growing inside and out.

Who or what inspires you? Many in different fields, family and friends, but I recently watched (while in lockdown) the Michelle Obama documentary and she still is a huge inspiration to me.

What book are you reading ? Re-reading Light Years, by Elizabeth Jane Howard. I was reading some heavy books and I found it too much. So I went back to the family from the 1930’s that I fell in love with years ago.

Favourite scent? Do Son by Diptyque.

silk dress louisa parris

Where does that scent /smell take you? Living in San Francisco.

What positive change will you take away from lockdown? This constant need to be going at 100 miles an hour. The fashion industry has a pressure to be working so far ahead and producing huge amounts. For me it is the quiet understanding that I need to go at my own pace and if collections only happens twice a year and a small amount, then I’m very happy with that – the family and myself need to come a bit further up the list.

Instagram : Louisa Parris

Images from top

The Pot of Geraniums by Odilon Redon c.1910

Portrait of Louisa

Louisa Parris scarf

Thiebaud garden dress by Louisa