Creativity – In the Studio with Designer Lauren Lail

Sep 15 2015

by Whitney Long


 In this series on The Southern C, readers get to “meet” many of the interesting and creative Southern entrepreneurs we know online through our social network and also in “real life” at The Southern C Summits.  These individuals are the CEO’s, founders, creative directors, artists, designers, makers and doers that are shaping our landscape with their vision and ingenuity.  Take a peek into their day to day life, find out what they are working on, discover their “a-ha” moment and gain insight into what motivates and inspires their work and lives.

The subjects and their niche may vary but many share the paradoxical traits of creative individuals – they daydream, observe, ask big questions, people watch, seek new experiences, view life as an opportunity for self-expression, take risks and bounce back all while following their true passions.  We hope you will be inspired as we spotlight the creativity that abounds in our region.  According to Einstein, “Creativity is contagious”, and this is one thing we are happy to spread.

With New York Fashion Week (NYFW) in full force, no doubt we have fashion on the mind. All of our social media feeds are blowing up with beautiful images and we are dreaming of closets full of couture!   In keeping with the spirit, this week’s Creatives Q&A spotlights designer Lauren Lail.   The Library by Lauren Lail collection features beautiful and timeless pieces designed with a vintage-made-modern sensibility.  Designed in Charleston and made in New York, this chic Kentucky native has managed to capture the best of both worlds by bridging the gap between traditional and on-trend.  Sounds like a Southern creative!

(Editor’s note: Lauren is currently exhibiting her new collection at Capsule Show in New York Sept 17 – 19 at Pier 94.  Capsule curates and hand selects the best of the best – from the independent emerging designers, to more established labels who push the envelope of design, craftsmanship and quality.)


Describe your brand/business

Library by Lauren Lail is a capsule collection of womenswear crafted with a “vintage-made-modern sensibility.”  The everyday essentials can be easily worn from beach to garden party, weekend brunch to wedding.  Each garment is designed in Charleston and manufactured in Manhattan.  

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What did you want to be when you grew up and how has your background influenced your work?

I wanted to be a country singer — I still do!  One problem, I can’t carry a tune!  I’m inspired by music, though, and am most creative when I have tunes on.


Describe a typical day in the life of Lauren Lail

My days vary depending on where I am in the creative process.  The last couple of months I have spent perfecting samples for my Spring/Summer 16 collection and preparing all of the details that go into exhibiting at market.


Any “a-ha” moment that made you take the leap?

My leap into design was an organic transition from my how I began my business curating and merchandising vintage clothing.  I found myself altering many of the pieces to make them more modern – taking up a hem, changing the sleeve, adding a sash… essentially redesigning the garments.  It lead me right into designing for my own label.  


Where do you find inspiration? Any blogs, magazines or person?

Charleston is such an inspiring place to work.  The beauty that surrounds the city is incredible.  I am constantly inspired by the landscape here.  I also feel so fortunate to work in an inspiring workspace at 1600 Meeting.  I share a showroom space with some amazing business women and being around one another keeps the creative juices flowing.


The rare day off – what do you do to unwind?

Spend the day with my family!  Lately that has looked like lots of time at the park and bike rides.


Best business advice you ever received?

“Be fearless in the pursuit of what sets your soul on fire.”  

Fast and Fun –  Five Favorites

Book – I never get time to read anymore, so I’m going to have to throw it way back to Where the Red Fern Grows

Movie – Beaches or Father of The Bride

Quote – I read this recently and loved it – it resonated with me as a business woman and a mom.  “Being both soft and strong is a combination very few have mastered.”

Cocktail – Salty Dog, Angie Hranowsky made Jackie Thomson and I these a couple years back and it stands as my favorite cocktail!

Indulgence – Dark Chocolate

Whitney Wise Long, co-founder of The Southern C and The Southern C Summit, loves to connect with Southern entrepreneurs and learn more about their creative endeavors.

This series – “In the Studio With” – offers her the perfect opportunity to do so!  For more of Whitney’s Southern Creatives Q&A’s click the names below:

Gunner and Lux

Katherine Sandoz

Deane Hebert

Katherine Frankstone

Caroline Reehl Boykin

Vaughn Dorrian

Emily Stroud

Jordan Jarvis Hughes

Heather Lancaster

Suzanne LeRoux

Sarah Schell Swinson

Julianne Taylor

Whitney Herndon

Barbara Cobb 

Andrea Gray Harper

Emily Bargeron

Katherine Mullins McDonald

Erin Gregory

Harrison Blackford

Amy Kinslow

Twine & Twig

Meredith Anne Sutton


Whitney Long View More Blog Posts from this Author

Whitney Long is co-founder of The Southern C and The Southern C Summit. Mama x 4, wife x 1. Entrepreneur, thinker, doer, writer, researcher, believer. Enjoys working alongside creative entrepreneurs to build community while supporting established and upcoming brands. Hobbies include travel, reading, bike rides and clever craft cocktails.

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