1. Why did you get into fashion?
I’ve loved fashion for as long as I can remember, and started making clothes for myself and friends in middle school. I acted all throughout high school and when I started making costumes for plays, I knew I had to pursue my interest in design and construction.
2. Who are your biggest inspirations?
I’ve always been inspired by Alexander McQueen, Elie Saab and the ladies at Marchesa. My newest design obsession is Mohammed Ashi. His gowns are exquisite.
3. What makes you interested in bridal?
I love how women look in wedding gowns; instantly radiant, romantic and perfectly happy. Weddings are such special occasions and I want to be a part of them in a big way.
4. If you had to make a wedding dress for yourself, what would it look like?
My dream wedding dress changes every day. I love anything with a vintage silhouette, an interesting back or extravagant beading. I’m also a sucker for draping and lace.
(this particular gown is by Leanne Marshall, our guest speaker!)
5. What are some of your favorite non-bridal fashion projects that you’ve completed?
I’m not very far in my schooling, but I have completed a few dresses for myself. Most recently I made coordinating outfits for myself and my boyfriend for his birthday party. My favorite costumes that I’ve worked on have to be the animals from Charlotte’s web (I’m the goose!)
6. Talk about your entry in the scholarship contest.
For the AniA contest, it was really important to me to capture the spirit of the different bridges in Portland. There are so many bridges in our city, just like there are so many different neighborhoods and people. No matter where I draw my inspiration, I always want my work to feel romantic, elegant and timeless, and that’s what I went for in my bridal designs. I’m so glad the Ross Island gown was chosen, It was definitely my favorite of the three.
(in case you missed it- check out her submission here)
7. What do you want to be when you grow up?
My dream job would be designing a bridal line for Kate Spade or BHLDN. I’d really be happy designing anywhere, but those two companies definitely fit my aesthetic.
(We think Karina needs to think bigger- design your OWN line, lady!)
8. What are some of your favorite things about Portland?
Portland is so eclectic, and tremendously accepting. I love exploring and discovering new restaurants, coffee shops and vintage stores. I’m always astonished by how friendly and helpful the people are, and how welcoming the city is to artists and designers.