SOFFA about / Liliana Pham

Here at SOFFA Magazine we are not only creating unique content, taking beautiful photos or doing workshops. We also like to meet interesting people just like Liliana, a young and talented fashion designer. When she wrote to us that she would like to be presented on our blog, we didn’t hesitate to meet her to find out more.

Liliana started her career in fashion at the age of 14 as a model, after a photographer approached her and as an inexperienced young girl she agreed to go on with modelling. During secondary school and College, she was interested and studied fashion, growing up, forming her own identity as well as her own solid opinion. Realising that modelling was not the right future for her she perused her interest in photography, forming her ideas about composition, expression and an aesthetic for the overall appearance of the object. It didn’t take long for her to be immersed in this form of expression and last summer she began to shoot many self-portraits.

Liliana loves interconnection, by being both the photographer and the subject of her work she tries to find harmony and balance in that relationship that can relate beyond superficial appearance and present itself as a linear composition. Her projects are based on these relationships, which go beyond the image of herself or the expression of her personality and lend weight to her designs as a fashion creator. 

Her recent Diploma thesis titled: Clothfolio is a prefect example of Liliana’s approach. The collection not only appeals to its creator, but is worn by, and cut with respect to her own proportions. Her approach to her thesis was an intensive study, from creator, designer, photographer, model, graphic designer and producer. Working on the collection was a challenge about getting to know her own limits, free herself from fear, and learn to trust her own abilities. Liliana considered the whole project from the perspective of psychology as well. She believes that it is necessary to listen to yourself because we evolve every day. Our feelings and opinions vary from day to day, and therefore we should follow them and take action.

To her credit for hard work, last year this young fashion designer won the Czech National Award for Student Design, for her work on the Masako dress, whose theme is the namesake Japanese princess. The dress was displayed last year at Mercedes-Benz Prague Fashion Week, which was received with much interest by the fashion enthusiasts and public. 

Where does Liliana take inspiration? She listens to herself. She is trying hard to turn her attention to her inner being. And whether it sounds too spiritual or not, Liliana perceives her creations as self-realization and thus she reaps considerable success, by producing designs that act as an expression of her self.  We were interested to go beyond the feeling and enquire how this emotion is then turned into an artistic creation? Liliana explains her process being very spontaneous and momentary, triggered by a photograph or art her designs come to her in an instant and she begins to grasp the idea, designing in her head.  Feelings and sensations are integral to her work which is why she can’t do "Custom designed" pieces as the results would simply not be her reflection.

Who is the young fashion designer’s biggest icon? She perceives the Olsen sisters and their brand The Row as her own cup of tea. Surprisingly, she doesn’t really care about the outcome as much as the journey the designers had to experience with the brand to be successful. (Have we already said that Lili should consider to apply for psychology?) From the photographic field it is Sarah Moon, whose professional career is very close to Liliana’s. This famous photographer had also started as a model.

We at SOFFA were delighted to spend some time discussing not only fashion, but psychology and philosophy with Liliana, and wish her much success in her journey of artistic expression and finding her life balance.

By: Yasmin Keshmiri Hejduk and Eliška Krutáková | Photo: Liliana Pham