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A quick word with … fashion designer Elisabeth Kwan

Up-and-coming designer Elisabeth Kwan finds inspiration in minimalism, origami … and penguins.

elisabeth kwan fashion designer idealogMy first job was … working at Hailwood as a design assistant and boutique manager. 

And now I’m … Working from my home studio designing and handcrafting an assortment of leather bags and accessories.

I wound up here after… Well, I upgraded my laptop and phone… This led to me designing a leather portfolio case and phone sleeve because I couldn’t find products out there I was quite happy with. From this experience I became intrigued with the medium and I started playing around with other leather concepts as I love the characteristics of the material.

If I wasn’t doing this, I’d be … In Sweden working for a design house.

Talk us through a typical day…  A typical work day for me would be designing or handcrafting products in my studio at home. I also pop in and out a lot to pick up materials, tools, trims, dyes and to get my leathers laser cut/engraved. Lately I’ve also been working on an exciting collaboration with another designer, watch this space!

I’m inspired by… Right now, origami! Otherwise my inspirations stem from minimalism, elegance and penguins.

My first creative/artistic memory is… Dyeing some calico fabric blue, making a skirt out of it then writing phrases on it with fabric paint when I was 12.

I can’t live without… My clothes, my Macbook, my Fiat and my boyfriend and family.

One trend for 2014 will be… Less is always more. 

True ‘style’ is…  Being yourself and feeling comfortable with it. 

My work in three words is…  Simple, beautiful, timeless.

Elisabeth Kwan is the designer behind eponymous label E L I S A B E T H . K W A N. She graduated from AUT with a fashion design degree and has since started her own label, focusing at this point on innovative leather accessories and a soon-to-be-released apparel collection

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