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A digital atelier where inspirational
women in fashion share their ideas

The women

Intimate interviews with women who inspire us, styled by Space Matters’ editor Nike Felldin.

Maya Lourenço

This was before he got huge and started making pophouse, 2001 in Madeira. Bob Sinclair was playing and his shit was so poppin, it was like OMG, like the greatest thing I had ever seen. There were people all over dance floor at the club with their hands filled with pills, they were like do you want and I was like no! can’t you see I’m busy! To see him play, the technical skill, how he made his selections and mixes. It was what got me.
Last summer on a music festival called Into the Valley, Ricardo Villalobos och Zip played a really long back to back set. It was such a joy to see, like shit how the fuck are you doing whatever it is that you do.

Like shit how the fuck are you doing whatever it is that you do

I see myself as an artist and I think it’s silly and disrespectful towards my creativity if I’m up there playing records that I’ve bought and taken time to pick out for my audience and someone comes up and asks me to play Bon Jovi. There are dos and don’ts and if you would know about them, you would probably never ask.
I am not a make-a-wish-DJ, if that’s what you’re looking for then go on some cruise ship instead of a dark basement club like Under Bron. I don’t change the music just because someone asks me to. I like what I like. But I get sad when people don’t like the music I play.
I also feel happy when someone in my audience comes up and tells me that I’m good. In those instances it feels weird to just say “thanks”. I really appreciate it.

I’m scared to be self-righteous, to think I’m the world’s greatest. It happens all the time, people get full of themselves and let their ego take over. It’s not cool. I’m very grateful and I try to be aware and conscious.
Under Bron is one of the most difficult places to play at, a lot of djs hang out there. There are nights when a bunch of them are around, checking you out, analyzing your every move, from how you mix to your selection of music. When it comes down to the music it has to be good!
I know that I am good at what I do and that others think the same. I am good at the technical part, but there’s always more to learn. I want to play more, get better selections and find more new music. I am looking forward to what the future has to hold.
I feel like things are evolving.
Right now all I want is for my music to get done so that I can share it with others. I’ve created so much music but I have only released a fraction of it, because I am a perfectionist. When I hear a sound in my head I need to sculpt the idea in the computer and work on it until the sound in my head is the same sound that comes out of my speakers.

When I hear a sound in my head I need to sculpt the idea in the computer and work on it until the sound in my head is the same sound that comes out of my speakers

I can sit and tweak the same sound and drumbeat for, forever. I used to think it was a struggle but I’m trying to learn to let go and take things as they come, go with the flow and do what I like, like hanging out with my records and explore music. I might go online and realize shit this person dropped something new and get completely mesmerized about it.
If my records get dirty I wash them with vinyl washing soap.
There’s this dj that I’m loving right now… but it’s a momentary thing… I don’t like saying I like this or that kind of music or this or that dj. If I say I like techno then everybody says she likes techno and that’s not the case. I don’t always like techno.
If you want to make a super depressing pop tune, just do it! Instead of going but it’s not popular right now so I will just go ahead and make a super uptempo Swedish Housemaffia beat. Why would you do that, when you really want to make a super depressing song? That’s the advice I still give myself.

Three defining moments for Maya Lourenço

1

Slowdive – Souvlaki 1993

“This album has been with me for about 15 years and has been the inspiration to all I do, I still think this is the best album ever made and I love every little tiny bit of it all.”

Found here.

2

Germaine Greer

“I just can’t stop loving Germine Greer. Her books, articles and just hearing her debate. To see how Norman Mailer gets totally magled by my feminist idol and her sisters gives me strength and inspiration. This debate introduced me to feminism and it keeps staying very close to my heart.”

Found here.

3

Synewave, record label

“Synewave is that label that I might have the most records from and where I love all of them. It goes from dreamy minimal techno to acid bangers and jacking tools back to more deep stuff.”

Found here.

Credits

Photography Hedvig Jenning / Mink MGMT Styling Nike Felldin / Hall&Lundgren
Top by Altewaisaome
Words Dimen Abdulla

Ottil Songanurninvivolasas

“My thoughts are in Los Angeles right now. My former roommates just called, wondering when I’m coming ‘home’, telling me they’re about to put all my summer clothes away in the garage. I know what that means. When I moved from Los Angeles in 2012, I wasn’t able to bring all my vintage clothes at once and when I returned six months later my friend had given them away to various thrift stores. I visited every vintage store in Hollywood and found about a third of my stuff. ‘Hi, my friend had a meltdown and gave away all my clothes, this jacket/blouse/dress/shoe is mine’. I brought another friend whom, with his long Rod Stewart hair and amazing glittery clothes, helped me persuade them to sell me back the clothes for a dollar a piece.

At our house in LA the TV was always on, showing all of the Hollywood classics on TCM. I often found myself on the blue velvet couch watching Ginger Rogers dance in movie after movie. I’m glad I have the ability to relax and do ‘nothing’. To chill is an artform I wish for everyone to master. Before I commit myself to work I have a long period of research, I systematise information and explore each possibility. Then follows a period when I seemingly do ‘nothing’, but that’s when everything falls into place. I’m not always a brainstormer, who comes up with ideas on the spot, but they’ll show up eventually and I’ve learned to trust myself in that and as soon as an idea forms I’ll know right away if it’s a good one.

I visited every vintage store in Hollywood and found about a third of my stuff. ‘Hi, my friend had a meltdown and gave away all my clothes, this jacket/blouse/dress/shoe is mine’.

Los Angeles was my home during my years as design assistant and studio manager for Jeremy Scott and I moved back there last fall to start my own line of bags. I had meant to go back to Stockholm for just two weeks to do scenography/set design, for Jenny Palén’s short film Spacerabbit, but during my time back I ended up getting more and more offers. I couldn’t say no when asked to curate the first ever Memphis Group exhibition in Sweden, so I ended up staying here. I love Stockholm, this is where I want to be. I have just found a small, family run, factory in Turkey that is going to produce my bags, instead of the one in LA. Since I am used to working in a high pace it’s an invigorating experience letting my bag-label grow slowly alongside other projects.

A big source of inspiration for me are the different worlds that Los Angeles consists of, where you’re allowed to get lost for a little while. The tolerance for the quirky, different and odd is bigger there and you don’t feel the same scrutiny as in Stockholm, which is refreshing.

As a child I dreamt of becoming a documentary filmmaker, a toy designer or work in a candy store. I’m not a documentary filmmaker but I did actually work in a candy store in LA for a couple of weeks. As long as I can remember I’ve had the fascination for everyday settings and situations. People’s homes, what they cherish and the treasures they choose to surround themselves with. The discovery of Seinfeld, the TV show, also inspired me through its portraits of the everyday absurdities I’ve always had a weakness for. The toy designer in me comes to life in the clothes I wear and in many of my designs. Jeremy Scott was the perfect place for this. I sense there has been some uncertainty regarding your professionalism if you don’t follow the mainstream fashion and interior norms, but that seems to be changing – luckily for me. I’m often drawn to what’s borderline ugly, I like it when you’re not sure if something is really nice or just hideous and I love the unlikely. Humor is also important, like for Droog Design.

Who am I? Just the thought of having to define my person makes me shiver, typically me. Having trouble with this I came to the conclusion that I am a super social loner who easily feel at home almost anywhere. I love socializing, but I also love solitude. After periods of hard work I need time to recuperate. I have the benefit to have a friend who lives in a house outside of Stockholm, where I often go with the intention to stay for a couple of hours, which become days. When I’m not hiding under a bed reading dusty old books, she teaches me how to cook.

Art and design are immensely important. No, no one will die if I make a mistake, except maybe my ego if I end up in the Hall of Shame, but objects, our surroundings and the clothes we wear affect our wellbeing and so in the long run, designers actually save lives!

Finally, I would just like to say that I am convinced that I am immortal!”

Three defining moments for Ottil Songanurninvivolasas

1

“A reaction to the glossy, impersonal consumerism. The stories were creative, personal and different. I remember one where the walls were all covered with gingerbread. Swedish interior magazines are so boring, all the stories look identical: right amount contemporary design objects, some antiques, and then top it off with – like a magic instagram-filter, some stuff from Svenskt Tenn. Maybe that’s what’s going to make me a billionaire; designing the Svenskt Tenn-Instagram filter!”

Nest magazine, interior design magazine, 1997-2004.

2

“Mother and father. They have never feared obstacles, always kept their optimism, seen humor and taken interest in everything. They effortlessly socialize in all levels of society and never differentiate between people. They’re fearless in their expression and they have given me the adventure, humor and love of contrasts. Above all, they’ve stayed friends after going separate ways and we’ve always celebrated x-mas and enjoyed family dinners together – this is large and beautiful.”

3

“Emojis. How you’re able to hide yourself behind these icons, how what they’re meant to express actually no longer ‘mean’ anything. Using them you don’t have to truly phrase what you want to say and while they might make a text message more joyful, at the same time they dilute the essence of what you just said.”

Credits

Photography Henrik Nielsen Styling Nike Fröhling Felldin / Hall&Lundgren Make up Veronica Lindqvist / Mikas Looks Hair Peter Johansson / Hall&Lundgren
Retouch Anna-Maria Edvinsson

Words Jon Lax

Chili De Almeida

Strong people — women in particular — motivate me. What they stand for, what they believe in, how they won’t cave. I’m motivated by working with people who have a healthy relationship towards the fashion business and who genuinely love the craft. This is a business that has come to be defined by bloggers and likes on Instagram. For me, it’s disheartening to see a reality show contestant call themselves a designer because the craftsmanship and knowledge isn’t there. I value education and hard work.

I have a always been inspired by music and in my world music and fashion go hand in hand. I listen to a lot of rock music and that is reflected in the clothes I wear. They’re not overly polished, I like my designs a little bit raw.

Women who have each other’s backs and take joy in each other’s accomplishments inspire me.

Ann-Sofie Back is an inspirational woman. She truly follows her heart and isn’t afraid to take a stand. Silvana Imam, also, in her fight for basic human rights. Women who have each other’s backs and take joy in each other’s accomplishments inspire me. And that’s not something you see too much of in this business.

Sometimes people take fashion too seriously. We’re not saving lives here, but it’s an amazing form of art that, at its best, can make your day a little bit brighter.

Chili wears a jacket by Ann-Sofie Back

Three defining moments for Chili De Almeida

1

“Kriget: Saxophone, drums and bass. Three gentlemen that make dark, noisy, rhythmic punk/techno.”

Found here.

2

“Ann-Sofie Back Atelje: THAT is exactly how i want to dress. Every piece is perfect!”

Found here.

3

“Gustav Bendt: The greatest saxophonist of all time and my music inspiration. He has the kindest heart and taught me that humbleness is the sharpest knife. The love of my life.”

Private image.

Credits

Photography Henrik Nielsen Styling Nike Fröhling Felldin / Hall&Lundgren Make up Veronica Lindqvist / Mikas Looks Hair Peter Johansson / Hall&Lundgren
Retouch Anna-Maria Edvinsson

Words Jon Lax

Femi Frykberg

I’m a real daydreamer, and sometimes I spend a bit too much time just sitting around thinking about a billion different things that I want to do, rather than just getting up and doing it. I’ve changed a lot since last year, though, and I feel like I’m becoming more and more of a doer. It’s nice to finally see my life going in some kind of direction after drifting around for years, and being a bit clueless about myself and what I want to do.

Right now I’m doing a lot of different stuff because I get really bored if every day is the same. I’m working at a café and at a music agency where I put together playlists for different clothing stores. I’m also hosting a club called FEEL with three friends, and that got me into graphic design because I ended up making all the flyers for our events. Now, I have been doing artwork for a few artists, so graphic design is turning into my job as well. It’s a lot of fun because I’ve always known that I wanted to do something creative with my life, but I’ve been too much of a self-critic and thinking I’m not good enough, so I really needed a little push to get out of my comfort zone.

I get a lot of inspiration from my environment, mostly from my friends, I think. I have a lot of close friends that are doing art stuff, both music and visual art, and I think just spending a lot of time with them gives me a lot of ideas. I can be a bit of a quitter because I lose my patience when I don’t learn stuff quickly enough, so it’s good to be surrounded by people that are inspiring.

I try not to stress too much about my future, since I’ve noticed that doing something that I don’t enjoy one hundred percent doesn’t work out for me. I’m just doing whatever I think is fun at the moment, and hopefully that will take me somewhere good!

Three defining moments for Femi Frykberg

1

“I love Linda Pedersens art. Everything she makes is genius, but i’m especially obsessed with her swords. I wish i could have one.”

Found here.

2

“I’ve always been interested in occultism, especially astrology and spiritualism. These are from a big card deck called ‘Harmony Angel Cards’, which are meant for angelic guidance reading. I love the graphics of them and they’ve inspired me a lot in my own artwork.”

3

“This is a picture taken by my friend Wilhelm Jaresand about two years ago. It’s me and one of my best friends, a very early summer morning at southern Gotland. We were riding our bikes home from a party in a barn but had to stop because the sunrise was insane. I’ve never seen so much fog before, it was almost weirdly quiet, and there were bunnies jumping on the field in front of us. It’s probably the most beautiful moment I’ve ever experienced. I’ve traveled a lot in my life, but the Nordic nature will forever be my favorite.”

Credits

Femi wears a top from Wolford.

Photography Henrik Nielsen Styling Nike Fröhling Felldin / Hall&Lundgren Make up Veronica Lindqvist / Mikas Looks Hair Peter Johansson / Hall&Lundgren Retouch Anna-Maria Edvinsson

Words Jon Lax

 

Malin Gabriella Nordin

For me, to work with art is to have a conversation. I never know how my work will evolve, it all depends on the material and its specific qualities. I do something that the material reacts upon and I always have to adapt to that. It’s to give and take. One idea leads to another, like a game of dominos. I prefer materials that are unpredictable because that forces me to always evolve and find news ways. It’s a very honest and direct feeling when I create, if I make a mistake I will continue working from that mistake instead of erasing it. I never know how a piece will end up, but when it’s done it’s both strange and familiar at the same time. Like a distant relative I haven’t seen in a long time. I have recurring colours and shapes in my work, but I use them in a new way every time. It’s like a big family tree that’s always growing with siblings and relatives I didn’t know existed. I go back and forth between techniques and materials, setting different types of moods. Painting and sculpture is a lot more physical and direct for me, while collages have more to do with focus and time. But it’s also about not getting stuck in things I know. As soon as I feel that I’m stuck in a pattern I try to change techniques in order to be able to return to the old one, but with a new perspective.

When things are forced they feel flat to me

It’s important to be able to see the process behind a piece, it gives the work more dimensions. I want the pieces to have a feeling of completion while at the same time they’re full of opportunities. I’m fed up with peoples’ need for answers: what is this? what does this mean? I prefer something that isn’t completely sure, like imagining the universe or walking by a conversation that don’t know the ending of. It creates room for me to develop what’s to come, room for my own thoughts and fantasies. In a way I feel like many of the pieces I appreciate are ones that give me a sense of being caught in a moment, as if time stopped just before something was about to happen. Composition is key. To not be thrown out of the piece but to be constantly drawn into it by always finding new ways to look at it or to let yourself be hypnotised by it. To lose yourself in a piece completely — as with, for me, the work of Cy Twombly or Mark Rothko.

I always work in periods, it’s as if some power takes over. But when that power isn’t there, I don’t try to force it. Of course I could wake up every day and paint or do a collage but while that might make me a better artist technically, it wouldn’t give me the same feeling. When things are forced they feel flat to me. Those periods when it feels like nothing comes out are extremely difficult and frustrating but creativity often comes back if I let it be and get some distance to it. And you have to be ready for it when it finally comes, that’s part of the process.

When it’s over it’s as if I’ve lost an invisible body part and I never know when, or even if, it comes back

I remember one time, coming back from Bergen. I was tired and hungover and all I wanted was to sleep and out of nowhere it came: like a high, and I made a whole series of collages that night, probably ten in just a few hours. The day after, I made three more and after that just one. I could feel it fading and when it does, you just have to accept and let it go. It’s like you’re having everything pulled out and when it’s over it’s as if I’ve lost an invisible body part and I never know when, or even if, it comes back.

Three defining moments for Malin Gabriella Nordin

1

Erica Jong

This list:
“1.Denounce useless guilt.
2. Don’t make a cult of suffering.
3. Live in the now(or at least the soon).
4. Always do the things you fear most. Courage is an acquired taste like caviar.
5. Trust all joy.
6. If the evil eye fixes you in its gaze, look elsewhere.
7. Get ready to be 87.”

Photo found here

2

Açai

“The açaí in Rio, especially in Bibi Sucos”

Photo found here

3

Baba Stiltz – Hotel Exile

“I cried the first time I heard it. I still do.”

Photo private

Credits

Photography Henrik Nielsen Styling Nike Fröhling Felldin / Hall&Lundgren Make up Veronica Lindqvist / Mikas Looks Hair Peter Johansson / Hall&Lundgren

Words Jon Lax

Lo Hallén

When I was in school I was quite confident, and I took a lot of space in the classroom, which the teachers were reaffirmative of, whereas some other people gave me a hard time about it. Especially, I believe, as I was a girl.

I think that was a feminist awakening of sorts

I think that was a feminist awakening of sorts. I wish that there’d been – and I hope that it will be – a lot more focus on gender studies already in elementary school. I believe a lot of people in their early teens, regardless of their gender or sexual orientation, realize that something is wrong and that something is making them feel small and inferior without being able to point out exactly what it is. Applying knowledge about patriarchal and heteronormative structures early on, making them transparent, is important on a personal level simply because it’s so hurtful to always be called out and always be called wrong despite doing all right, and not knowing why.

When I left elementary school I began to express myself through style. Dressing kind of like an eccentric became a new way to demand my space, to stop apologizing for myself. I could be loud without using any words. That was a turning point for my school years as well as for me as a woman, as a human being. I cut my hair off and started wearing leather jackets, tights and boots – not an amazing fashion statement and it probably wouldn’t have meant anything today, but within the walls of the school building it was a way for me to challenge the reigning gender norms. All of a sudden people started to ask me about my sexual orientation and putting me in new boxes without knowing me. It was exciting to me that without actively doing something, I was being provocative. It dawned on me that the exterior can be really powerful.

Dressing kind of like an eccentric became a new way to demand my space, to stop apologizing for myself. I could be loud without using words

That’s why the knowledge of fashion and my personal style has always gone hand in hand with feminism. My style is an extension of my opinions and of who I am. When I understood that, I knew that I wanted to work in fashion and I’m so glad to be where I am today. What it gives me is far from superficial. What I wear and what I learn about fashion gives me the strength I need to move forward in life, it reminds me to dare to be loud.

And that’s why fashion and clothes will be a part of me and my personality throughout my life. I’ll always use the way I dress to emphasize who I am at the moment. I look forward to growing older. I’m not sure if I’m all grown up yet or if I ever will be, but I’m sure my style will change organically along with me through the different stages in life . Though I think I have already found a stable foundation for my style – just like I have for my values.

Three defining moments for Lo Hallén

1

Ann Demeulemeester fall 2001

”First time I took interest in a designer’s archive of collections. I wanted to follow her journey.”

Found here.

2

Öland, Alvaret

”Perhaps my best place in world. Except for my emotional connection to Öland, I love it because of its amazing nature.” 

Found here.

3

Marina Abramovic, Rhythm 0

”Performance rockstar and the coolest person on the planet.”

Found here.

Credits

All clothes by Acne Studios

Photography Henrik Nielsen Styling Nike Fröhling Felldin / Hall&Lundgren Make upVeronica Lindqvist / MIKAs Hair Philip Fohlin / LinkDetails Retuch Anna-Maria Edvinsson

Words Hanna Johansson