Let's talk with Designer Ülle Pohjanheimo
Ülle Suurhans-Pohjanheimo is a fashion designer whose name and brand is well known in Scandinavia and the Baltic States. The Pohjanheimo Fashion House was opened in 1991 and their creative dreams have been growing ever since …
Do you often buy new clothes?
I don’t buy clothes too often as I tend to wear a lot of my own design and I try to prioritize longevity and quality when I do buy clothes. A lot of the time I end up wearing our new fabrics and designs in order to learn more about their level of comfort and quality, as well as find any flaws that might come with it.
Do you read fashion magazines?
Yes. Unfortunately, I have to admit that I get most of the important information from the web, however, I still like to read magazines in order to gather any extra information and keep up with the general trends.
Do you wear jewelry?
I love jewelry, especially earrings because I am not really able to wear rings due to my field of work. However, I also love to wear rings whenever a suitable opportunity arises.
How often do you wear jewelry?
I wear earrings on a daily basis and I like to rotate my selection depending on my mood and outfit. I also have a selection of earrings especially for summer.
What is your most valuable piece of jewelry?
All my jewelry is ’’natural’’, so to speak. A lot of silver-gold, pearls, diamonds, sapphires, mountain crystals etc. I think that jewelry should not be temporary and should last both in terms of time and trend, not losing their value. Most jewelry ‘’trends’’ are not interesting to me and I have to say that I’ve steered away from them on purpose as they are exactly the opposite of my philosophy: they’re temporary.
Do you think people feel different when they wear different clothes?
Absolutely, clothes are a part of our identity, whether we want to admit it or not. First impressions are quite often left by our clothes. Clothes are a part of our general look. Of course, we feel different in, for example, sport clothes and gala dresses. I think that’s also because of the preparation we put into wearing different kinds of clothes as well as the occasion. For example, with gala dresses there’s a whole different atmosphere and hours of preparation while sport clothes are normally just chucked on and associated with different activities. As for weather, natural materials keep us warm better than artificial materials, so we definitely feel different when wearing different materials as well.
What fashions that you see today do you think will be out of fashion within two years?
Its hard to say, because the 70s and 80s, which we were sure that would never return, is back. That’s because there is a whole generation for whom these trends are completely new and very interesting. Functionality and comfort is definitely very important in today’s fashion.
Do you think that the clothes we wear reflect what is inside us ?
Yes, for sure. Our clothes are a reflection of our emotions, choices, our view on the world, education, financial situation and our position within society.
What do you think about secondhand clothes?
I think that when you consider the environment, second-hand clothes are okay as long as they are environmentally sustainable and of high quality.
Why do you think people buy secondhand clothes?
I think a lot of people buy second hand in order to protect the environment. Also, a lot of people see it as a more reasonable option in terms of finances but also see second-hand as a more interesting alternative to what the commercial stores manage to offer us. Of course, a large part of the reason is standing-out.
Have you ever bought secondhand clothes?
Of course I have. I still visit them (2nd hand stores) quite often to find something timeless and different. One of my favourite pieces in my collection is a second-hand coat from the 1950s, made out of leopard fur. It is one of those timeless pieces which I really appreciate.
Why is it acceptable for women to wear men's clothing, but not for men to dress in women's clothing?
I think its because until quite recently, the stereotype for men was a strong, powerful alpha male. I think that the society is not yet ready for total equality in terms of men and women, even though we are steadily moving towards that. Women have, over the years, grown to be powerful and stand next to men in the eyes of society, therefore it being acceptable to wears mens clothing. I have to admit that I am a really big fanatic of men’s fashion myself.
Have you ever bought imitation brand clothing?
Never, I respect the designer as well the essence of good design. Copies don’t have any value to them and never even come close to the original. Copies hold no artistic value. We see the end product, which in itself is inferior to the original, but theres no story or philosophy behind imitation clothing.
Do you think dress codes should be adhered to if requested on an invitation?
Absolutely. I think that dress codes are necessary for the quests to feel comfortable in each others company, in order to create equality, so to speak. Adhering to the dress code is essential to avoid embarrassing situations.
Do you think there's a difference between" fashion " and "style" ?
Yes. Style is what sets us apart, reflects our personality and is constantly evolving. Fashion is situational and has no relation to style. Fashion is extremely liberal these days, however, there is not much innovation as old trends are just mixed together. Perhaps we see seasonal colours, lengths etc in commerce, which is fashion and trend. Style is how we choose to wear all those things. Fashion is easy to follow and get into, but style has to come from the individual itself.