An updated, contemporary interpretation of her first collection for Samuel & Sons thirteen years ago, Encore by Lori Weitzner is comprised of exquisitely sophisticated pleated borders complemented by the reintroduction of her Opaline Cultured Pearl Fringe. The collection brings a new vision to pleating and beading, introducing contemporary colorings and advanced techniques in a multifaceted collection of dimensional designs.
Lori graciously welcomed us into her studio for a tour and behind-the-scenes look at the development of Encore. We’ve captured moments from the process—her experiments in color and construction—that led to the final production of eight new designs while hearing her thoughts on designing trim, color trends and what inspired the new collection.
Talking Trim: A Q&A With Lori Weitzner
What is your design process like?
LW: Our process is multi-faceted– we draw, we paint, we play, we sew, we bead — we do all kinds of things. Then we go to the mills and we develop with them our ideas and then we tweak and work some more. Sometimes our ideas our realized as we had hoped, and sometimes we have to go back to the drawing board. And sometimes, with the collaborative help of our artisans, the final product is even better than we had hoped!
What is the story behind Encore?
LW: Encore is a very special collection to me because the very first collection that I did 13 years ago, Repertoire, was also all about pleating. I love the technique, but I also love the dimension it gives to what is normally a 2D product. With pleating, it becomes 3D and it becomes alive; as light hits it from different angles in a space it looks really beautiful. What I wanted to do with Encore was push the envelope on what pleating could be.
How is designing trim different from designing fabric?
LW: One of the first things I learned designing trim is that unlike fabric, the more colors you have within it, the more chance it has of success because it can live with other things so easily. The other thing I love about designing trim, is that it is what I like to call “jewelry for the home”. The finishing detail that makes something that might otherwise be ordinary-extraordinary– just by the addition of that special detail. This allows us so many options.
What is your favorite style in this collection?
LW: Virtuoso. It actually utilizes four different processes! It is a laser cut pattern that is pleated, digitally printed, and then sewn onto a tape. What I love about it is that it combines old and new techniques alike —a very contemporary technique of laser cutting combined with the ancient technique of sewing and applique; Old and new together to create such a beautiful pattern.
What else do you love about how the collection turned out?
LW: I love the fact that we can do something very classic and silk like, and then we can do something in a dry wool that is very contemporary and chic. Both pleated, but both completely different from each other. They can offer our clients many variations to work from.
What colors have you seen trending lately?
LW: Nudes and blush tones are the new neutrals. Grays are warming up. Everything is warming up. More “colorful” neutrals, every kind of green. And of course pink and purple are back but they are now more “sassy” than “sweet”.
“Rooted in textiles, I am always searching for and inspired by dimension and texture. The Encore collection celebrates that through pleat, origami, color play, embroidery, and beading. The inspiring possibilities trim provides are thrilling and endless.” –Lori Weitzner
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