L'O: Please tell us about yourself.
SK: First of all, I would like to greet all L’Officiel Arabia readers and thank you Tanja Beljanski for the opportunity to introduce myself and my fashion creations in your magazine and The Middle East. My Name is Svetoslava Kirilova. I’m owner and fashion designer of Valdini Couture. I was born and raised in a small town in Bulgaria – Blagoevgrad. As a young girl, I always wanted to wear beautiful dresses, but what is more important - individual pieces. I am convinced that every woman is absolutely unique and deserve to wear fashion clothes that no one else owns.
My family as many other in the province in Bulgaria at that time couldn’t afford a lot of new clothes. That’s why I started to create my own outfits using only scissor and needle. My first sewing machine came only later. Friends of mine and other people in town started to ask me to create clothes for them. This is how I started my career as designer and fashion creator. In fact, I have no design education, only my talent and experience.
I studied psychology in my hometown and parallel created clothes for me and my first clients. After finishing my studies, I moved to Sofia, the capital of Bulgaria. There I opened my own fashion studio. I operated two fashion companies afterwards. It was a big success for me and for fashion industry at that time. I participated in fashion shows and made customers happy with beautiful garments. Many customers order my creations still today. My clientele appreciates good quality and the unique fashion vision.
L'O: How did you end up in fashion business?
SK: My first long-awaited child was born 2007. Soon I had to end up my successful fashion business and concentrate myself on my family and the baby. In 2012, our twins were born and I spent a few years in a role of real mother and housewife. Important fact is that I never stopped to create fashion! I used every spare minute to turn back to my sewing machine and to design new models for my clients. I always had regular customers and it’s a great honor for me. Since 2015 I have been living with my family in Germany. Our place of current residence is near Frankfurt am Main, Hesse.
L'O: What made you decide to start your couture house in Frankfurt? When was VALDINI founded?
SK: VALDINI Couture is a new brand for women who prefer individuality and modern feminine style. The brand was founded in August 2019 because more and more people wanted to order and to wear my dresses. In last few months I successfully took part in two fashion shows in Frankfurt and got a lot of new customers from Germany. The brand is my comeback as a designer after some years of parenting.
Fashion is my biggest passion. My mind and my heart are full of new ideas. I never compare my creations with other designer and I’m not interested in fast fashion trends. I design all dresses with a bit of my soul.
L'O: How many people are working at your atelier?
SK: Now we are a small team, but the couture house is growing.
L'O: Do you produce everything in house?
SK: All garments are produced for the moment at the atelier in Germany. Dresses comprise many fine details and are 100 % handmade. I can’t repeat often enough that my dresses are like small babies for me and I love each of them. So, I accompany all essential processes at the atelier.
L'O: What makes your dresses unique?
SK: Every dress is unique and individualized. It’s very important for me to deliver my customers such a special feeling to wear something that was created only for them. A dress from VALDINI is a single piece like a real diamond. Wearing the dresses, you can be sure that you look special. During my work, I’m trying to combine different fabrics. It ‘not a rare case that one dress consists of three or more fabrics. Also, I’m absolutely in love with details like floral or small butterflies.
L'O: Do you make your own fabrics?
SK: I have been travelling the world and looking for the best fabrics. I don’t make my own fabrics. I focus on designing.
L'O: What inspires you to design?
SK: Fabrics and colors are my inspiration. There’s something magical about it. Through the beauty of patterns, colors and tones I get so many ideas that I cannot wait to start creating dresses. That’s why I invest much time in selecting and purchasing fabrics for my collections.
L'O: What does fashion mean to you?
SK: Fashion is the most important thing for me after my family and kids. I cannot imagine to live without fabrics and my sewing machine. My fashion creations are the reason for me to move forward, to develop my personality and to get stronger.
L'O: What is your daughters' roll in your couture house?
SK: I hope both daughters will work with me here and one day take over the process of the couture house. But only one thing at a time. Only God knows what will happen tomorrow.
L'O: Which traditional techniques do you use in making your garments?
SK: All my garments are made of fabrics from all over the world. To make handmade clothing is more an international technique than traditional, but the best one - in my opinion.
L'O: How long does it take for one of your garment to be handmade?
SK: To handmade a dress, I need on average between one and three days. For a kids dress, it’s “only” half a day or a one working day. For me it is a great pleasure to create my own fashion dresses, so I don’t really notice how time passes.
L'O: What is the price range of your dresses?
SK: VALDINI dresses are all handmade and unique pieces. Prices are available upon request.
L'O: Where can we buy VALDINI Couture garments?
SK: Currently, I am working as personal designer. It means I concentrate myself of my regular customers and design for them clothes and accessories. Every person who likes my style and creations can contact me via e-mail or visit my website www.valdinicouture.com
L'O: Who is your favorite fashion designer?
SK: I’ve always admired fashion collections of two designers – Eli Saab and Zuhari Murad. Their creativity is very similar to all things that inspire my work.
L'O: What do your like about Frankfurt?
SK: Frankfurt is an international and modern city in the heart of Germany. Here live and work a lot of successful and well-dressed people. You can meet them at events, in high-class restaurants and bars, at different exhibitions. Frankfurt is sometimes referred to as "Mainhattan" and has much to offer. I like to explore the city and to meet its people.
L'O: Must-see places when visiting Frankfurt?
SK: Must-see places for me are the new Frankfurt old town, the museum embankment and local bars with an amazing skyline view. Frankfurt is the only city with a skyline in Europe.
L'O: What is next for VALDINI Couture?
SK: This summer, we’ll open a new fashion atelier in Sofia Bulgaria to expand VALDINI production. There I found a great team of highly qualified personnel. Like that we can create more clothes in a high quality for our customers and move forwards together. I have already got a big assignment for a showroom in Paris. Yet another showroom in Milano is interested in cooperation with our fashion brand. In Frankfurt, we work together with a well-known fashion stylist and create clothes for celebrities and business people. Now I’m looking for a showroom or a partner for my collections in Dubai, because I would like women in Dubai to see and to try VALDINI dresses.
I wish all readers all the best in this difficult time for the whole world. Stay healthy, love yourself and enjoy your every single day.