Designer Korto Momolu Goes Dark For New York Fashion Week
Her Spring 2012 collection is bold yet chic
Korto Momolu is in desperate need of sleep. The Project Runway alum, who juggles being a mom and a business woman, is crafting 15 pieces for her upcoming Spring 2012 New York Fashion Week collection. Debuting this Friday, Momolu let Loop 21 steal a couple minutes of her hectic schedule to talk what fashionistas can expect on the runway, her inspirations and the must have pieces the “Korto woman” should own this fall.
Last time we talked you were preparing for what you called your most difficult show, the one in your home country of Liberia. How did it turn out?
It turned out amazing; how it was received in Liberia made it all worthwhile. It was the Sankofa Fashion Show, where I made outfits that reflected the emotions of the women who went through the Civil War in Liberia. So all the garments were kind of based on emotion. They all told a story of what they went through from the beginning with separation, to transformation and finally to celebration. So, it actually got more joyful as the line went on but it was all made in African print and about 80% of the fabric used was traditional Liberian "country cloth." It was a great show.
Now you’re preparing for New York Fashion Week. Are you excited to return back to the tents?
I am! Fashion Week is always exciting and draining and so many different things at once, but it’s what you have to do as a designer if you want to make it. So I’m excited. I’m excited to be almost done my collection so I can take a breather.
What can fashionistas expect to see from you this fall?
This year, I’m pretty much keeping the same foundation with lots of bold prints, strong colors; focusing more on the orange tones: rust, grey, black, cream. I have several prints in the collection with a little bit of black. It’s a little bit more of a darker collection. It’s not your usual collection, where you have everything bright and sunshiny. It’s somewhere in the middle, kind of like a sunset. That’s kind of where I am right now. I’m playing around with different shapes that are very Japanese inspired. I have a lot of kimono-esque pieces and it’s very Korto.
And you touched on the Japanese inspiration but was there an overall inspiration for this collection?
That’s pretty much it. I did a lot of draping this time, but I think my focus was on getting different shapes, creating new silhouettes that are still easily visible and fitted well on any size woman. I’m making something that I love and creating a new one that I love, which is the kimono. It’s one of the easiest dresses for my shape, but you can only wear so many of them until it becomes redundant. So I’m taking that shape and creating new ways to rock it.
Will this show also feature your accessories line?
Yes, you’ll be seeing my accessories. You’ll see my Wooden Collection, my Diamond Collection that we unveiled last Spring as well as my usual one-of-a-kind bulky chunky Korto custom pieces, and handbags as well.
Who would you like to see sitting on the front row of your show?
Honestly, I would love to see real people. And the show that I’m doing on the 9th, truly is about real people. Real people will get to come to the show. They can buy tickets and come to Fashion Week because that’s really who matters anyway.
The whole celebrity thing is so...it’s crazy right now. You’re only about whose on your front row but I want real women, a customer, one that’s about my jewelry, one that’s about my handbags, one that’s about my custom clothing pieces. The ones that are still rooting for me to get my line in stores. Those are the people I want to see in the crowd because they're the ones who truly matter at the end of the day. Those are the ones who are buying my stuff. Those are the ones who appreciate it.
Fall is right around the corner. What do you think the modern day woman, the Korto woman, should have in her closet as she’s preparing for the change in season?
I’m really digging the cardigan slash scarf, all in one. Those are really cool because you can rock those on a simple day with some jeans and a tank, with a turtle neck under it. Or you can wear a simple classic sheath dress underneath, put a belt on it, with some jewelry and make it dressy. It’s kind of like comfort clothing. ...I’m loving that right now.
International fashion designer Korto Momulo will unveil her Spring 2012 Collection during New York Fashion Week at the Metropolitan Pavilion on Sept. 9. For more information or to purchase tickets visit www.TheNYFame.com