MY LIFE IN FLOWERS
With Spring on the horizon we’re welcoming in a new season with relaxed loungewear and pastel colours. Here we chat to self-care expert Lois Tien about her new loungewear brand SoL and explore her at-home work and living space…
Can you tell us a bit about yourself and how your creative journey began?
Fashion is in my blood in so many ways. Growing up with my family’s business of apparel retail, I’ve always been exposed to different aspects of the fashion industry and it’s something I was interested in at a very young age. I remember going to merchandising meetings with my father in middle school to give feedback about what styles I thought would do best and it was always so rewarding to actually see those items fly off the shelves 3 months later! Throughout the years, I have found fashion to be the one constant medium of artistic expression.
Can you describe your creative process and how you come to design your pieces?
I start with a vision of how I see myself going about my day on the weekends, when I’m looking to unwind from the week, relax and lounge around at home. When ideas stem from what I find most beneficial to my own self-care routine, I find that they turn out to be the most authentic creations with the least challenges to deal with! I work with a designer to help me do the technical drawings and bring the vision to life.
Who and what are your biggest inspirations?
Arianna Huffington, Miroslava Duma and Gwyneth Paltrow. They live and breathe my favourite topics: sleep, planet-care and self-care.
“Being surrounded by greenery is a good reminder to go back to nature and return to what is important but often overlooked”
Like many others right now you work from home, can you describe your interior style and how you create an inspiring space to work in?
My style is a bit of mid-century modern meets urban jungle vibe. I love greenery so I try to have a lot of that in the space - for health and wellness but also being surrounded by greenery is a good reminder to go back to nature and return to what is important but often overlooked. I love light and big windows. Some people find it distracting but I love being able to see outside while I work and again, it’s just a matter of putting things back into perspective for me. Having big windows that let in a lot of sunlight also help the greenery flourish! Compartmentalising and separating work space from lounge space has been key for me. It’s so easy to mix the two together so I have a dedicated den where I have all my samples hung on a rack, my brand visuals and inspiration images tacked on foam boards, a packaging station so I can visualize the whole process, etc where I can really be quiet and focus.
SoL focuses on loungewear- can you tell us your go-to essentials for the ultimate self-care day at home?
Here at SoL we call it SelfWear which stems from self-care and puts the wearer first. For me, feeling the most at ease and comfortable is often at home so I wanted to create a collection of loungewear and sleepwear that reflected that. My go-to essentials for a self-care day is getting enough sleep (8 hours!), a slow wake up, a run and long stretching session then back home for a coffee, catching up on news and emails and spending time with loved ones. Simple but underrated.
“I am most relaxed when I’m in nature so it felt sensible to immerse myself in as much nature as possible within the home”
The last year more than ever people have been spending lots of time at home- what’s your advice on creating a relaxing home environment?
To borrow the mantra of my good friend, let nature in! I am most relaxed when I’m in nature so it felt sensible to immerse myself in as much nature as possible within the home by curating a collection of plants, flowers and greenery that relax and soothe me.
I’ve always been into candles but am also getting into diffusers and about to try my first incense now! Bodha is this amazing therapeutic perfumery brand that creates the loveliest and most calming scents that ground and rejuvenate you. I highly recommend them!
How does nature and sustainable living factor into your work?
SoL is an acronym for sustainable circular loungewear so actually sustainability and circularity are at the core of the brand. The fabric used in the SoL essentials collection is made from wool pulp procured from sustainable forestries. It is one of the few genuinely closed loop development cycles where what is taken from the environment is actively replanted and regenerated back into the system. Our fabric is compostable and biodegrades when in landfill. With forestries being such a big focus of the brand, we have also partnered with Canopy to give back a percentage of all proceeds to go towards their conservation efforts.
What are your favourite flowers and can you tell us your most memorable flower memory?
I have a newfound appreciation for small delicate flowers that come in a more neutral palette- ivory and blush. They just seem to fit in lots of spaces seamlessly and elevate them. I also grew up loving lilies - they were just this simple, pure and elegant flower.