Krista Norris' Lace, Linen & Wool

Krista Norris' Lace, Linen & Wool


Launching her line upon graduation from Carleton University Business, Communications and Media Industries in 2012, Krista Norris introduced her classic yet authentic line to the Ottawa fashion scene. Ottawa's girl next door, who was voted heartthrob of her graduating year in high school, is not only a sight for sore eyes, but also a successful designer at the age of 23.

Combining elegance with timeless fabrics such as lace, linen, wool and others, Norris' personal aesthetic and technique have garnered her a dedicated following in her local area. Recently, this following has bled into the more 'fashion-oriented' cities in Canada such as Toronto and Montreal. Alongside her scarves, which range from men's classic infinity scarves to feminine lace scarves stand Norris' leather and fabric bags.

Living proof 'it's all about who you know' Krista can thank friends for encouraging her to start making money off the hobby she is clearly very good at. These friends and family are also the solid foundation of Krista's following and in this case; being from a large suburb proves advantageous. Krista's large circle of friends from high school are her biggest fans, wearing her designs proudly, unknowingly advertising her line.

Krista has never been your typical small-town girl; she decided to indulge her curiosity and travel after enrolling at Carelton University in 2009 and studying for a year. Taking her 2nd year off school and embarking on a journey alone, she travelled to London, Thailand, Singapore, Australia, New Zealand and Fiji. Making friends around the world and putting herself in situations that challenge her, Krista almost felt satisfied. Since then Krista went back to Europe and travelled Paris, Holland, Ireland and England. Her enthusiasm and spontaneity exude from her line as well as her travel attitude, as she dances her way to different cities promoting her line.

While Krista's line blossoms, the possibilities are endless insofar as her 'why not?' philosophy keeps her nourished. Sewing started as a personal interest that she thanks her Oma for teaching her. Now, as her hobby turns into a success, Krista is smitten with appreciation and ready for whatever comes her way.

What were you doing just before you sat down to answer these questions?

I actually had a meeting with a buyer at one of the stores I sell in, and dropped off more spring stock!

This is all still very new to you. Did you ever expect to have such a great response to your designs?

I started actually selling my scarves after a friend asked why I didn't. He introduced me to a store owner who was happy to see if they would sell - and they did! I didn't tell anyone because I didn't think anyone would buy something I made.

What inspired you to start sewing and where did you learn to do it?

I started sewing at a very young age with my Oma. She was a seamstress and also did projects on the side, and I would love being around all the fabric. She taught me how to make small bags and purses.

How has your aesthetic developed since you started selling scarves?

I've noticed I really lean towards textured fabrics. Along the way I also added my leather tag which now I wouldn't make anything without.  

Have you considered branching out, and selling other accessories or clothing?

Yup, I actually have sold a few leather bags. I've thought about clothing, and I might eventually.

Where can people buy your scarves exactly?

Viens Avec Moi, house of clothing, Ottawa

Schad, Ottawa

Schad Blu (in the fall, men's) Ottawa

Belanger & Martin(s) boul.  St.Laurent , Montreal

Now, since you are a little more experienced in the field, where specifically do you find your inspiration?

I just trust the fabric I like more. At first I was trying to think what other people would like, but I've learned that what I like, other people usually will too.  I don't know if I find inspiration, I find fabrics and textures that I can see something with.

What sort of environment do you enjoy working in?

A space with a lot of open room. Fabric takes up a lot of space and you need to be able to lay everything out. I would love a huge loft with a lot of windows, as I currently work in my basement studio. I'm always playing music while I work too, keeps me in a good mood.

How many hours a week would you say you spend sewing?

Right now probably 10.. on various projects. In the fall it was probably 15-20 hours.

Is there an overall theme that you can relate your work to?

Probably just classic style. I am not too trendy and love the classic fabrics; wool, plaid tweed, lace, linen.

Who is your biggest influence?

My biggest influence is a close friend and mentor who has really taught me to look at life from a 'why not' perspective.  Nothing is outside anyone's reach.  

What are your goals for K & N in the foreseeable future?

I would like to expand just the Fall/ Winter 2013 scarf collection into multiple cities. Eventually I'd like to add other products but it's more important to me to do one product well and see it grow, than create a whole collection but it not really go anywhere.

If you are interested in more information, visit  Krista Norris' designs

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