August 8, 2009
I recently had the opportunity to ask my dear friend Marie Jean Baptiste, founder of Funky Lobes, some questions. Her line offers a beautiful collection of handmade accessories and reworked vintage. I’m a big fan of Funky Lobes edgy pieces and want to own every one of them!
S: Tell us about Funky Lobes, how did you decide to create your own business?
MJB: Well, I always knew I would eventually become an entrepreneur. I am always restless and hates to be confined to a regular job, so I've always dab into artistic endeavors such as wardrobe styling, personal shopping, designing, and just creating things. So it was a natural progression to fully launch my own fashion business.
S: I’m fond of the idea of reworking vintage pieces to create original new garments. What inspired you to do that and where do you find the vintage materials?
MJB: I have to be honest, my first inspiration to start reworking vintage is because I am frugal and hate to spend a lot of money buying new clothes, I've always edited things I already owned and people would always ask me: 'where did you get that?!'. That's when I knew it was time to start sharing it with the world!
S: What goes into designing your pieces? Would you briefly describe about your process? How long does it take from start to finish?
MJB: The pieces we design and create are usually conceptualize in a flash. I don't put much thought in the design process. Right now I am very inspired by 1970's bell sleeves and feathers. So I've been making bell sleeved dresses and feathered accessories like the feathered chokers. The dresses usually take a little longer to make but the accessories vary between 30 min to about 2 hrs.
S: What inspires you as a fashionista?
MJB: Oh I don't really see myself as a fashionista! I love clothes, I love to create things and I love helping women become more eccentric and take more risks with their wardrobe. If she feels good when she walks out of my studio, I'm a happy gal! And I am so easily inspired by so many things its kinda sickening. My world is very bright and imaginative.
S: What do you want women to know before they try on one of your clothing and jewelry?
MJB: I would want them to know that is special. Everything is either one of a kind or limited edition. And I wouldn't sell to them if I wouldn't wear it myself. And its made with a lot of love! Ha ha ha
S: Where do you plan to take your business next?
MJB: Well, I would love to start carrying Funky Lobes dresses and accessories in boutiques across the country. Definitely expand to a bigger market and keep sharing the goods!
click HERE to enter Funky Lobes' site