Meet Lauren Nevada Batchelder, the Brooklyn-based designer behind Lauren Nevada fashion line, recent winner of Daily Candy’s “Start Small, Go Big” Academy, and Vixely’s latest Girl Crush. Founded in 2009, Lauren Nevada’s designs begin in a little atelier in Tunisia, where Lauren crafts her pieces with seamstresses on-site. When she is not in her atelier in Tunisia, she splits her time between New York and Paris.
The inspiration for Lauren Nevada collections begins with a great silhouette: a vintage button-down, a Victorian dress, the perfect shoulder seam or hem detail. She then reworks these flattering shapes many times, creating new lines by draping her pieces by hand, sewing them together, and correcting them to perfection.
Lauren’s artistic vision and thoughtful process developing her designs sets her brand apart, as well as her modern, sophisticated styles. Vixely had the pleasure of meeting Lauren at DailyCandy’s recent Big Wig Lunch at David Burke Kitchen in NYC. We loved Lauren’s cool, thoughtful demeanor and joy for her craft—and then fell madly in love with her stunning, inspiring designs! Learn more about Lauren, why she loves being an entrepreneur and her unique approach to fashion, and explore Lauren’s latest collection.
Vixely (V): What is your name and your company/brand/project?
Lauren Nevada Batchelder (LNB): My name is Lauren Nevada Batchelder. My company is Lauren Nevada.
V: What is your hometown/ college/ age? Where do you live now?
LNB: Lauren Nevada, my company, is a Brooklyn based business. I attended FIT, The Fashion Institute of Technology and am 31 years old. I live between three different cities: Brooklyn, Paris and Tunisia.
V: What made you decide to pursue this path and start your own company?
LNB: I have always been interested in fashion, I started sewing at a young age, and when I was little, I would ask my Mom to buy me fabric when we went to the store. It has always been what I loved doing.
I began getting more custom orders from friends and was already sewing and creating on my free-time. So, doing this full-time and starting a company was a natural step for me.
V: What sort of women do you try to reach with your brand and products?
LNB: We feel that our woman is someone who knows fashion inside and out and appreciates our interesting patternwork and the details in each Lauren Nevada piece. This customer has an urban mind set, she loves discovering new things and ideas. She loves art, food and music and like me she has many roles to play from working to having a family, expressing her own identity and reaching out to help her community. All of these things are a part of our customer.
V: What has been the most fulfilling aspect of being a female entrepreneur or changemaker?
LNB: I love that I can wear so many hats at once, working on fabrics, on patterns, the website, collaborating with stores and other artists. It opens my eyes to new ways of thinking and it is very inspiring to be involved in so many parts of the business.
V: Who are your inspirations?
LNB: Our inspirations come from many different places. Fabrics are so beautiful we can’t help but be completely hypnotized by them. We love vintage clothes because earlier eras in history saw the shape of the body differently then we do now, so it is fascinating to play with these vintage shapes and modernize them. Strong women are always inspiring, as are women who have interesting opinions, who travel, who create art, who teach.
V: How do you see Lauren Nevada evolving in the future?
LNB: Going forward, I hope to be spending more time at my atelier in Tunisia, where I work with seamstresses to develope new pieces. This is a very creative place where I can stop and have time to think and energize.
V: What do you do for fun? What makes you the most happy?
LNB: What makes us happy: Good music; Autumn afternoons; Summer evenings; Long dinners with old friends; Discovering new friends; Traveling.
LNB: Someone who is funny and smart! And someone who sees the big picture, who doesn’t get obsessed with each thing that happens, but can see the importance of things in the long-run.
V: If you could invite anyone to a dinner party, dead or alive, who would be sitting at your table?
LNB: Queen Elizabeth I, she was an incredible Queen. She shoud never have been allowed to rule England alone in that era of hisotry, everyone thought she would get married and hand over power and have children. But she did it—and she was covered in jewels and pearls all the way through.
V: Last trip or holiday you went on:
LNB: Hong Kong!
V: What is something you are the most proud of?
LNB: I am proud that starting my own company has inspired friends and family and others around me to do the same. When a friend tells me that they were inspired by Lauren Nevada to start their own company, it is an enormous feeling of satisfaction.
V: If you could give the 18 year old version of yourself one piece of advice, what would it be?
LNB: I would give my 18-year-old self the same advice that all of us would give ourselves at this age—to not care what everyone else thinks. But somehow when you are 18 years old it is just not possible to stop caring. That is not what this stage of life is about.