I first came across French born Marlene and her lovely detailed scarves at Pulse earlier in the year. She has just launched her new collection 'Automatic' and so I thought it would be a good time to find out how Marlene and her fledgling business is getting on.
patternbooth: What has been going on for you since PULSE in the summer?
marlene: Pulse has been a really great exposure to the public & the market and gave me the opportunity for new collaborations and clients. It gave me a lot of confidence as a young business.
patternbooth: As a young business, what do you wish you knew before you started?
I learnt a lot by myself and I guess I made mistakes but I'm human after all!
I would say planning your business in a short timeline with the production, the distribution, the business model... When you start you want to do everything at the same time so I really learnt to organize my business and go step by step.
patternbooth: What has been your biggest surprise?
marlene: The enthusiasm of the public. When you start your own company, some days you are like “Oh god” and the only thing that can lead you to a positive energy are the feedback of your clients and the people around you.
patternbooth: Tell us about this new collection?
marlene: My new collection is called “Automatic”. It is a continuity of my first collection Serendpt but the prints are more abstract and YES a bit more colorful. Like in my first collection there is no repetitive prints.
I extended my range of products by creating pocket squares and shawls for this collection to give the opportunity to people that have a smaller budget to have an obsessional design with them. The collection is unisex and I’m really pleased that men are wearing my scarves.
patternbooth: What got you started with your obsessive drawing?
marlene: When I start a drawing, nothing is really determined in advance except the A3 format paper. I choose a really simple shape that I’m reproducing compulsory. With the repetition of my movements, I start to loose control of my drawing. Nothing is predictable because the time frame of each piece is between 20-30 hours. I really enjoy putting myself in a long time scale and loosing control of my gesture, because yes, I’m not a machine.
patternbooth: Where do you want your business to go in the next 2 years?
marlene: I would like to extend my range with other products, not especially with textiles but working with textures and 3D shapes, continuing to position my work between art & design. And of course doing collaborations with other designers & institutions.
patternbooth: What is next?
marlene: I’m currently ending my MA at Central Saint Martins this year, so a lot of work is coming and I’ve started a new collaboration but I can’t tell you more for the moment ...