Lipstick & Cake Chats with Natalija Bouropoulos from NATALIJA THE LABEL.
A few months ago I stumbled across the Instagram page for NATALIJA THE LABEL. The feed was filled with photos of beautiful celebrity silk nighties and gowns. I love nightwear and was just so in love with the collection Natalija had created, it wasn’t all cartoons and flowers, it wasn’t dowdy and it certainly wasn’t raunchy or skimpy.
I wanted to know more about Natalija and how she came to launch her own label. I think I might have left a comment on one of the pictures and next thing I know I was sitting down to cronuts and coffees with the gorgeous founder Natalija and the lovely Nastasia and Brooke from Straight Up PR.
It was a fabulous morning with plenty of laughs and I absolutely loved hearing Natalija’s story. Here it is…
So tell us a little about yourself and how you came to start NATALIJA.
I first found inspiration in 2012 when I got engaged. I wanted to find a beautiful robe that was feminine and affordable to wear on my wedding day, as I was getting ready. I felt my choices were limited, the options were either femme fatale (definitely not for the parents to see!), or were dowdy and slightly immature.
It was out of my own frustration I noticed a gap in the sleepwear market for pretty nightwear options for women to wear to bed, for special occasions or simply to lounge around in all day. And so, in 2014, my entrepreneurial spirit launched NATALIJA.
How would you describe your brand in three words?
Fun, whimsical & luxurious
And what makes your sleepwear different to other brands out there?
NATALIJA is all about celebrating femininity! The brand has a playful colour palette and a range of elaborately detailed and luxurious prints on natural fabrics. Each piece is an invitation for women to be inspired, choose colours that speak to them, and mix and clash prints to form their own individual style.
We’re creating fashion pieces that transcend from ‘sleep to street’, taking the idea of “PJs all day” to a level of sophistication! It’s all about being clever with what you have, and encouraging women to match our ‘sleep’ pieces to create an on-trend ‘street’ outfit. I recently wore one of my silk kimonos with a strappy top over jeans during the day. You can also layer with nice accessories and heels for an effortless evening look – they’re very multifunctional.
Where does the inspiration for your designs come from?
Deciding on a concept for a new collection is always the first step to designing. I take inspiration from what is beautiful in the world, nature for its variety and enchantment; I also love to reflect my travels through my pieces. I spend quite a lot of time looking at colours and searching through modern and vintage pattern books, choosing a story that would best embody the feel of my collection.
Do you have an all-time favourite piece?
My favourite piece from Floral Impressions is Anemone for its fantastic hues of coral pinks and beautiful greens (but again, this changes every week!).
Casey Burgess was recently announced as your first Dreamer. What do you look for in a Dreamer and what did you love most about Casey?
I started thinking about who would be great for the brand, and Casey stood out – we really connected. She embodies what the brand is all about, and is passionate about health and wellbeing, especially in the evening.
The evening time is my time and I have a ritual to ensure I am relaxed, rested and ready to have the best sleep so that I can wake up refreshed. My favourite is to rub a few drops of lavender essential oil on my palms, it’s a great way to relax your mind and balance your inner self before bed! Bedtime is also exciting because I get to slip into one my garments. The silk feels amazing, and I feel beautiful wearing it. That’s the only way women should be feeling when they go to sleep at night.
Proudest moment to date?
Having the courage to leave the corporate world, and work for myself to create my own brand and operate a business guided by the principles I feel strongly about. It has been a lot of hard work but a dream journey.
And what’s on the horizon for NATALIJA?
This year is going to be an exciting one for NATALIJA! We are collaborating with lots of Australian talent to create amazing styled shoots, and beautiful campaigns to inspire. The vibrant colours, lifestyle and romantic ‘picture-postcard’ of the Mediterranean influence our 2015 winter collection, titled ‘Azulejos’. Launching in May/June this year, it has a staggering richness; an emphasis on sensual, is an immediate expression of eccentricity and transcends the winter pieces, such as long resort-style pants, from ‘sleep to street’ fashion for spring.
So where can Lipstick & Cake readers find your gorgeous pieces?
MORE ABOUT THE BRAINS BEHIND THE BRAND
Name three people (dead or alive) you’d invite to dinner:
Leonardo da Vinci, Gandhi and George Clooney (eye candy).
Tucked away in among the tranquil gardens in Woollahra, is CHISWICK Restaurant. The menu is deliciously simply, designed for sharing and features produce from local suppliers and from it’s own garden (yum!).
What is your best place to come up with ideas? (Car, shower, on a walk):
I’m most creative just before bed (cliché totally not intended!). When ideas come to mind, I quickly scribble them down on my notebook so I don’t forget. I find it helps put my mind at ease so when I wake up, I am feeling refreshed and not tired due to lack of sleep because I couldn’t switch off from my thoughts!
Name three beauty products you cannot live without:
Bronzer, moisturiser with SPF15+ & mascara
Coco Mademoiselle by Chanel
The fiery red hue by MAC – Ruby Woo
Breakfast at Tiffany’s – is a timeless charming classic starring a timeless beauty
Dream holiday destination:
Yes, France may seem obvious… though there is so much more to France than a selfie in front of the Eiffel Tower and Louvre. Mid last year, we honeymooned in the South of France and it was magical! It boasted gorgeous and varied landscapes, from rolling hills, manicured gardens and lavender fields, to palm trees lined down the Riviera. And you can’t forget the cafes, fine wine, cheese, exquisite breads, extravagant chateaus and wonderful architecture – all as unique as they are breathtaking and exude love.
I always have some gelato from Messina stashed in the freezer.
Huge thanks to Natalija for chatting with me and to Nastasia and Brooke at Straight Up PR for organising the interview. I cannot wait for the four of us to get together for another cronut and coffee session :-).
The girls also gifted me with the divine Queen of the Night robe which I’ve actually been wearing mostly at day. I can’t wait to share the looks with you in next weeks Threads & Treads. x
For more info on NATALIJA or to buy head to http://www.natalijathelabel.com.au
Photo supplied by Natalija.