Ten minutes with Eva Karayiannis
As we launch spring/ summer 18, Eva Karayiannis takes 10 minutes out to explain how she started out on her ‘Caramel’ journey and what still thrills her every day.
When and how did you decide to work in the fashion industry? Do you remember a moment as a child, or a little story that pushed you into this area?
I was one of those girls who loved their baby dolls, from Sindy to Barbie, I was dressing dollies all day long and when I had a piece of paper I was drawing clothes for them. I was playing with them until I was 12…which sounds a bit strange. And then I was dressing me. I’ve always loved clothes and fashion. I sat in on many fittings as my mother had many of her clothes made to measure. She would pick up the fabric and the style and a seamstress would make the pattern and the garment.
My first dress was an Alaia one. I used to buy a few pieces but they were special and very considered. The relationship my generation had with clothes is a totally different to the one that today’s generation has with clothes. We had an appreciation of the craftsmanship and the design. That is what I want people to experience with my clothes, to remember how it feels to wear those clothes.
Who’s hiding behind Caramel and what is your role in the company?
Ha, no one is hiding behind Caramel. Caramel is filled with talented people who love the process of making Caramel. The love for the brand is contagious. My job is to make sure we are pushing the brand forward to create better designs every year and give people the best there is. I try to fill the studio with creative and exciting material which will allow us to start the creative process of each collection.
What was your desire when you first created your own brand?
I was looking to give children the design and the quality it lacked. I treated it the way you might womenswear, that is to use amazing fabrics and stop the taboo of colour and fabric.
What is the identity of the brand, how would you describe it?
I knew the minute that I opened my shop that I had created something new that people reacted to it. That gave me the strength and the encouragement to develop and grown my brand.
Where does the name of your brand come from?
Caramel is both sweet and strong and sometimes addictive and I felt that the brand was all of those things.
What do you do to balance your work and family life?
After years of looking to find the balance I feel that now, I have found it. I know I can’t be happy with just work or just family life so I give them both the time and dedication they require and it is a wonderful feeling balancing both. I am no longer one or the other, I am both the working and family person.
What are your brand’s day-to-day challenges?
We are still a small brand next to the mega brands and in order to compete we need to produce excellence every day. We don’t take anything for granted and this means working hard every day.
Can you tell us about some of your current and upcoming projects?
Womenswear was a big project, it is not something you put out there lightheartedly. It needs a lot of attention and was in an area we needed to educate ourselves, understand fabrics, shapes etc. But I very much enjoy the process of creating it each season and all the challenges that come with it.
This interview first appeared on www.smallable.com
Photos and text by: Yasmina Perez
Eva wears our Blanket woman coat in Beige Check, Cardigan in Chocolate (Coming soon) and Pleat Front Skirt in Blue Check (Coming soon)