Art and function are co-conspirators in the stunning creations of Sophie Deloudi. One of Greece’s leading swimwear designers, with a strong international presence, Sophie’s collections are the result of an exceptionally elegant but also easy-to-wear design concept, discovers Insider’s fashion editor Michail-Alexander Passos.
What induced you to make a career out of swimwear design?
It was a wish I had since I was 17 years old. Back then, during the glorious decade of the 1980s, Princess Stephanie of Monaco designed a collection of swimwear and swimsuits. As soon as I laid my eyes on it, I knew that this was my dream. It’s also probably due to my love for the summer and the sea. Or because I was astonished when I saw top model Elle MacPherson in a swimsuit in French Elle magazine for the first time when I was young. Or none of the above…
What are your current fascinations and how do they feed into your work?
The thing that captures and inspires me always is art, in any form. Painting, sculpture, photography, cinema. You just see something and automatically it affects you, it brings out emotions. You may not even realize why, there is no explanation. It just inspires you, and you want to transfer this feeling to your work.
How would you describe your last collection?
Feminine, soft, harmonious, friendly, with nothing trying to impose an impression. A color palette of pastels and prints inspired by the Cubist era and specifically by the French painter Francis Picabia.
How have your collections evolved over time?
There is no specific order or process in capturing a concept or inspiration. It could start with a fabric or print that I see and like; it could be a piece of art, as happened in this year’s collection; or it could be an internal need for change of vision for a next collection. When I work on a collection for almost a year, the need for something different for the next year is very intense. I may not change my style a lot but I will certainly change the color palette and the aura of the final result. Repetition tires me. When I am done with the concept, the rest of the process includes mostly practical details: I will have to find and design the prints we will use, the patterns, then create the samples, etc.
Do swimwear designers need to follow trends to the same degree?
Of course I am affected a lot by what’s happening in fashion. And I follow these trends as long as they can be adapted to my aesthetics. I will not do something just because it is a trend. Moreover, fashion is so open that there is no strict trend that limits you.
What is your favourite piece from your newest collection and why?
I really love one-piece creations and I think that these are the pieces that stand out in my collections. It is the piece in which you can mostly express your creativity; one-piece swimwear reflects the personality of the designer better.
Where do you see your career evolving next?
I think that it is going step by step the way it should. I don’t know exactly where this route leads, but I do know that a certain, unknown, wisdom points in a direction only when we are ready.
What key pieces every woman should have in her summer wardrobe?
Sunscreen lotion and sunglasses – nothing else is obligatory.
Which is your favourite swimming pool in Athens?
I prefer going to the sea. We live in one of the few countries in the world whose capital is only 20 km away from the sea. So, why choose a swimming pool?
For stockists of Sophie Deloudi swimwear, visit www.sophiedeloudi.gr/stockists