This month we were invited into the home of the absolute rockstar rebel that is Laurie Lee! Founder of personalised leather jacket brand, Laurie Lee Leather. We sat down on her absolutely bonkers rainbow sofa, surrounded by taxidermy one of which was a squirrel with a machine gun, to chat about the process that goes into making such badass personalised jackets, and how she got to where she is today!
You can watch the full interview above, and find a few of our highlights below!
How did you end up here- as the qweeennn of personalised leather?
Apparently, “happy accidents and timing”. Laurie used to write advertising slogans, she combined this with her love of fashion/typography and chucked it all together on her huge collection of vintage leather jackets. Is Laurie a leather obsessive? Yes, you could say so…
(The YGSF customised “Cute But Psycho” jacket)
What tools do you use to get your name out there?
Once the creating was underway Laurie started getting requests from celebs, friends as well as for music videos! But what really did the trick? “Instagram was the real game changer.” For Laurie, the best thing about Instagram is that you can have access to people you wouldn’t normally have access to. “I sent Ruby Rose a message on Instagram and she got right back to me.”
With a lot of people going into personalisation, is competition something you worry about?
“Competition is great!” In Laurie’s opinion, it keeps you on your toes, encouraging you to come up with ideas and constantly keep things fresh.
The competition also makes her work hard to ensure that the slogans feel like they’re from her. “Keeping fun identity at heart of every slogan is something I work hard to do.”
Talking of jackets…is Laurie a fan?
“I have always built an outfit around a jacket”
The studio- on the top floor of her camden home- is where all the magic happens. So, how does she go about making each jacket?
Laurie both sources vintage jackets and designs her own leathers which are made in a factory. Once she’s got the right leather the first step is to strip the jacket of all its dirt and oil- that provides a better surface to paint on to. Next she chalks the design onto the jacket, and once she’s happy with that the paints come out. Laurie uses specialist leather acrylic paint, this type of paint offers longevity which is something she believes is really important.
In a day Laurie tries to make two full jackets, as well as running up and down the stairs to answer the door to clients, stylists and curriers! This is her cardio for the day…
Two years in and Laurie Lee Leather is KILLING it…so, whats the next step?
Get some staff on board, Laurie is a one man band and is desperate to “teach someone what I do.” As well as her team she hopes to expand her range, working with more seasonal products like denim, and maybe some footwear. Faux fur is a particular interest…
From here all we can say is Laurie, we CANNOT WAIT to see what you’ve got up your vintage leather sleeve!