You’ve probably already gushed to your friends about the works of fashion designer Lovísa Tómasdóttir, though you might not know it. Even if you’ve never heard her name, you most certainly saw her pieces beamed onto the TV screens of roughly 183 million viewers during a little production called Eurovision. Heard of it?
When national hero Daði Freyr took the stage with his band Gagnamagnið to perform their hit “10 Years,” the group were outfitted in Lovísa’s designs. Those iconic green sweaters covered with pixelated versions of themselves, those supremely shiny jumpsuits featured in the accompanying music video—all by Lovísa.
But while the artist might have first received international attention for her contribution to Eurovision, there’s so much more to Lovísa Tómasdóttir than a couple sweaters.
Romance & superheroes
“For the 2020 performance, Daði Freyr had given me some structure of what he wanted, but for 2021, I had total freedom, both for the stage show and the superhero costumes for the video,” she says when asked about the iconic designs. “I did a lot of research into Japanese superheroes and anime pictures and things like that for the video and then we ended up with these cosy sweaters onstage, which was totally him.”
Lovísa became first known locally for her bespoke outfits for performers around the city, including works for drag queen Gógó Starr and entertainer Sigga Kling. She’s since evolved that into her own fully-fledged brand, Lovísa Tomas, which just released its first spring/summer line and are currently working on upcoming winter releases.
The summer collection—in contrast to the extravagant looks of “10 Years”—is full of loose, draped satin dresses and cotton jumpsuits. Though it’s ripe with Lovísa’s characteristic drama, it’s wearable in all situations—not just on stage.
“It’s much more romantic than I usually do,” Lovísa says of the collection. “I usually use vibrant colours with a punk rock vibe, but it’s a different thing for the summer collection. It’s all the things I would want to wear. And it’s very comfortable—I’m not doing super tight no-stretch fabrics. It’s comfortable so anyone can wear them.”
Lovísa Tómasdóttir Talks made-to-order
But even though Lovísa has found a niche she thrives in, she’s still trying to evolve her brand, not only stylistically but ideologically.
“I’m still trying to figure out how I want to do this and how I want to represent my brands, because we have so much fast fashion here and, for me, I prefer the concept of slow fashion,” Lovísa says.
Slow fashion, Lovísa explains, is a rethinking of our relationship towards buying clothes. While stores like H&M and Zara end up over-producing pieces and subsequently throwing them out at the end of seasons, slow fashion is guided by sustainability.
So if you order a Lovísa Tómasdóttir piece, you might not get it the same day. Instead, Lovísa will then sit down at her machine and make the piece for you, ensuring that she isn’t wasting materials.
“You are responsible for your environment and for the things you bring into the world,” she says. “Icelanders usually want their stuff right then—preferably yesterday. But with slow fashion it’s—as you might expect—slower. I’m trying to do everything made to order so I’m not producing any inventory beyond what I need.”
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