Leave it to a couple of Central Saint Martins Alumni to make incredible fashions off the back of, say, the Bulgarian traditions they’ve lived and the 80s rock climbing tropes they’ve been gripped, dominated and chokeslammed by — or, Albanian dress and equestrian vaulting. Enter Emma Chopova and Laura Lowena, and their beyond avant-garde, highly eccentric and utterly rebellious label Chopova Lowena.
Oddities aside, their craftsmanship is nothing but punctual. Fantastic colour combinations meet in architectural theatrics — stiff and buckle waists hold up recycled tapestries of dependable checks and illustrative florals, charms appear to be right where you left them, and don’t get us started on the jewellery.
Captivated completely by their ability to refine eclecticism, and in celebration of the label’s capsule collection created for the stage of Matchesfashion.com, we asked the women to fill out our Collection Survey.
Name/s: Emma Chopova and Laura Lowena
Starsign/s: Emma- Leo , Laura-Taurus
Where are you from and where do you live now?
Emma was born in Bulgaria, grew up in New Jersey and now lives in Stoke Newington, London. Laura is from Somerset, England and now lives in New Cross, London.
Any personal beliefs or values that are meaningful to your work?
Heritage, craft, skill, community.
And what were you doing, learning or practicing before you started working on your line?
Studying at Central Saint Martins for 7 years each.
Can you tell me a little bit of background on the collection and label — any inspirations, references, important collaborations?
Our brand is about the juxtaposition of traditional dress and sportswear. We focus on different regions of traditional dress and a different sport every season which is how we start each collection. We started our brand with a book called Kukeri, in collaboration with Charlotte Wales, which showcased the mix of references. Our current AW19 collection is based on equestrian vaulting and traditional Albanian dress.
If the collection was a colour: all colours
If it was a mood: weaving vaulter
If it was an animal: frizzle chicken
If it was a time: now and then
If it was a song: Marie Davidson, ‘Work It’
If it was a season: winter
If it was a food: steak baklava
If it was a famous person: Bianca Casady
If it was a YouTube video:
If it was a smell: cherry
If it was a texture: hairy
If it was a film: Time of the Gypsies
If it was a quote: “Hurry slowly”
Images: matchesfashion.com. @chopovalowena