Designer Name: Laura Makla
Label Name: MAKLA
Origin: Atlanta, GA
"I am honored to participate in Nolcha Fashion Week. Nolcha is known for carefully selecting the best emerging independent designers to showcase. I am very excited to be to share my passion for life, love, and art in this extraordinary city!"
Background: From an early age Laura was encouraged by her mother, a painter and sculptor, to follow her own personal creative process that began with drawing and painting and quickly led into fashion illustration, draping and sewing.
After receiving an Associate's degree in Fashion Design from The Fashion Institute of Technology, Laura worked for high-end contemporary brands such as Miguelina to major retailers such as Macy's before launching her own label. MAKLA incorporates natural and raw textiles with organic abstract expressionist print design. The prints are experimental using alcohol inks, liquid watercolor and yupo paper.
Vision: Wearing MAKLA should be a transformative experience that gives women confidence, joy and enhances their femininity. We are dedicated to bringing out the unique essence and beauty in every woman. The one-of-a kind prints are interpreted from canvas to silk so that each style is like a small work of art. Our shapes are fluid and can be worn many different ways by women of all ages and sizes. MAKLA is also committed to using all natural materials and keeping our production local. Our customer can feel assured knowing their purchases are truly unique, high-quality, and consciously produced.
Signature style: From the beach to the city, MAKLA's designs fuse clean lines with exotic prints in vibrant colors adorned with lace accents. The collection delivers silk tunics, delicately detailed camisoles, ethereal dresses, and a modern take on the traditional caftan.
Influence: My inspiration for the image of the line lies in the glamour, sex appeal, and rebellious style of late seventies fashion. This era was like the teenage years for America. People were breaking free from tradition, expressing their individuality, and fighting for change and freedom. I love the spirit of this time period and feel it is reflected in a lot of my work.
Brand philosophy: Giving you something to wear while also making you dream.
Making it happen: The biggest challenge of working is this industry for me has been taking the risk to branch out and leave the security of my 9-5 job. I believe trusting my artistic vision and focusing on my desire to connect with my customers on an emotional level helps me to deliver an authentic product that transcends everyday fashion.
Celebrity crush/fans: I am consistently elevated to new creative levels as a result of musicians I admire. I would love to Dress Erykah Badu and Fiona Apple right now because their music carried me through the creation of my Spring 2013 collection. My celebrity muses include Laura Dern, Salma Hayek, and Penelope Cruz to name a few.
What does New York City mean to you? New York is a city that is full of life, doesn't take itself too seriously and really embraces the new. There is an endless amount of energy and stimulation here. It is a special place where designers can have a vision and have it all produced within a couple blocks in the garment district. I feel so privileged to be a part of one of the most diverse and fascinating places in the world.