Wearing: Snakeskin kimono c/o OOTO Clothing, Assorted jewellery from India, Eastern Soul & Inspired Tribe, Everything else is vintage
- How and when was OOTO Clothing created?
I was feeling extremely restricted in the normal day-to-day of London life, s in 2012 I set out on a nomadic adventure to feel inspired again. I was away for two years, travelling through Asia, India, Indonesia and Australia. During that time I was inspired by all of the fabrics, bold prints and colours, this pushed me to create my own collection that reflected my current lifestyle.
- Are than any specific ethics or beliefs that you wish to reflect through OOTO?
I believe in uniqueness and think there shouldn't be a uniform in the way people dress, it's an expression and it’s about looking different - don't be afraid to try something new and out of the ordinary to your normal style. I also believe in supporting small home factories and having a great relationship with them, this helps me and helps them in growing their business and supporting their local communities.
- What was your biggest influence and inspiration for OOTO Clothing? Did you have any greater intentions/purposes for your designs when you created OOTO Clothing?
Travelling and meeting so many free-spirited people encouraged me to really go for what I wanted and made me feel like anything is possible. Having said that, I am a realist and know that hard work is needed to make my ideas and dreams happen. My brand stands for ‘Out of the ordinary’ and is for the hard workers, grafters of society, a girl who enjoys social and creative activities mid-week but runs wild at the weekend, getting the most out of life. The versatility of most of my pieces enables the OOTO girl to incorporate them into the many sides of her personality and lifestyle; I try to do this by making every piece extremely comfortable and easy to wear. The idea is that OOTO Clothing isn’t just for festivals, but can also be worn over a pair of jeans or thrown on to brighten up your work outfit. It’s about looking out of the ordinary from average outfits you see in dull working environments.
- India seems to have played a large role in the aesthetics of OOTO, and within your own style - what inspired you to travel to India in the first place? And what has India and its culture taught you personally?
India is one of my favourite countries in the world…well so far anyway! I went there because I’m very interested in the Hindu religion and the vibrancy of Indian culture. I went with some close girlfriends and as soon as we got there we were surrounded by the smell and the craziness of it… I knew I was going to love it! After spending 2 days exploring around Delhi we headed to Rajasthan, the main place for gypsy culture in India. It was amazing! We spent a few nights with some gypsy dancers in the camps, eating chapattis and learning how to snake dance. It was a magical experience and I realised that India was definitely a place I would love to incorporate into my business. This gave me the push to find a textile village that could create my products and one I was able to build a life long relationship with. I suppose being in & experiencing Indian culture first-hand, has taught me to be less selfish and it doesn't cost a lot, if anything, to give, whether it be money or time.