A Fashion Designer with Music In Her Heart
Mode Lifestyle Magazine – “Life, Hopes and Dreams Issue 2020”
Editor: Jianna Ferrari
Photographer: Eugene Manning
Fashion Designer: Radmila Lolly
Design: MODE Studio
Classical singer Radmila Lolly has become a crossover success since her single, ‘U R Moving Me’ – Radmila Lolly ft. Dani Hagan, reached the top 25 of the Billboard Dance Chart. You may have also heard her music in the soundtrack for the movie “Honor Up” directed by Damon Dash with executive producer Kanye West. Radmila presented her last album “Wonderland” at the famous Carnegie Hall. Not intending to rest on her laurels, the talented and ambitious singer started a fashion business and is the sole designer of the couture fashion house “Radmila Lolly”. Combining her talents as a singer and as a designer, Radmila presented her couture collection during a concert while putting up a very memorable show.
Radmila’s fashion collection has been featured at multiple shows including Barneys Madison Avenue Trunk Show as well as at the Daytime Emmy’s Ceremony and many more. She has regular requests from celebrities who want to wear her gowns for award ceremonies or red carpet events. A number of artists have been seen wearing Radmila Lolly’s dresses such as Gayle King, Bebe Rexha, Mya, Miss Universe 2018, Miss USA 2018, Miss USA 2017, and others. Radmila is a non-stop traveler who has chosen Miami as a home and has built a network of friends and fans there.
MODE: Radmila we are fascinated with your fashion designs. At what stage did you decide that you wanted to go into fashion designing as a serious venture?
Radmila: I started by designing and creating my own gowns for my performances. People started coming up to me afterwards to ask where I got my dress from. Eventually the demand grew and I started making gowns for other people as well, which led to me starting my own couture line.
MODE: As fun as the fashion industry can be it is also known to be very competitive. What would you say is your particular niche that makes what you do stand out?
Radmila: In general, I don’t believe in thinking about how competitive something is ahead of time; why overwhelm yourself before you even enter that world? If you’re doing that you love, the challenges become part of your achievements. What makes me stand out I think is that I don’t follow trends, I make my own; I experiment first by wearing it myself, and I watch and gauge other people’s reactions to it. Then it becomes a trend.
MODE: Would you say that your musical creativity inspires your fashion design, is it more the other way around, or would you say they feed equally into each other?
Radmila: Music is the foundation to my creativity, and fashion design follows as an echoed reaction.
MODE: What challenged you the most on your journey to becoming accepted as a serious and respected fashion designer?
Radmila: I just don’t think that way; it’s always a journey, and there’s always different stages of life that are part of that. I love the people that I work with, and my clients, so I feel accepted at all times, no matter what stage in my journey I am at.
MODE: How did your music end up being the soundtrack of the movie “Honor Up”?
Radmila: Damon Dash and I have known each other for over a decade, we always were saying that we were going to work together but there was never the right opportunity until he was directing this movie, “Honor Up”. At that point, I had just released my album at Carnegie Hall, and he heard it and said it would be an amazing fusion of his movie and my music.
MODE: You seem to travel quite a lot for your music and fashion activities so which city would you claim as home and which do you enjoy the most?
Radmila: LA, New York, and Miami: All of them are my homes. It’s like having three children; you can’t pick a favorite! They all offer different things.
MODE: With all the recent travel and other restrictions in place, how has the coronavirus pandemic affected your music and fashion businesses? What major changes have you had to make in how you operate?
Radmila: I think that music and fashion are both still the same for me creatively; you are always telling a story through your art. My life is always about being creative, so it is still the same. In terms of my couture line, I sketch, and check in on my staff who are working from home. We make only one of a kind couture pieces and production batches are small, so we haven’t been affected too much. The biggest thing is we have started producing masks to donate and also for our clients.
For music, I am working on my next album; I am always composing, and practicing singing as well as the six instruments I am learning to round out my compositional knowledge.
MODE: What sort of long term effects do you think the coronavirus pandemic might have on the music and fashion industries as a whole and on your endeavors in particular?
Radmila: I want to stay positive. People need each other’s energies for live shows and concerts, so I don’t believe that large live performances will never return. However, it gave musicians a chance to create more at home so I hope we will see the results of that soon. There’s been a lot of composing, songwriting, and recording at home.
MODE: What can we expect to see from you in music and fashion in the near future? Any other plans that MODE readers can look forward to?
Radmila: My upcoming self-composed 19 movements programmatic album corresponds to a novel I am also writing. This project has been in the works since I first started the novel six years ago. When the book was started, I had always wanted an album to go along with it, but at the time I did not compose at all and I figured someone else would be composing it. Since then, my musical journey has brought me to composing, and now I can tell the story of my novel in another medium. There will also be a corresponding audiobook, and of course a couture line to accompany the album and the novel.
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