The early aughts were good to Barbara Tfank. In 2001, the New York native debuted her line at Fashion Week and has spent the past decade distinguishing herself from the millennial labels. Her twill frocks are favorites of Adele and Michelle Obama, and indeed FLOTUS wore a Tfank creation at the ever important State of the Union last month.
To wit, it’s an election year, and Lady O’s every look is under intense scrutiny. In some ways, however, it comes as little surprise that that high profile females from all realms have taken a liking to Tfank’s designs. With sumptuous fabrics, Ms. Tfank has a knack for designing flattering, feminine designs that harken back to the glamor of the sixties without feeling nostalgic.
We spoke to the designer about her line and her plans for fashion week.
You design clothes for powerful women… who is the Barbara Tfank woman?
It really interests me that the people who gravitate towards my clothes (Michelle Obama, Adele) they’re women that are communicators—they have very strong opinions. I think that my clothes allow for women to show themselves, their power. I think that’s a really change in fashion: women are much more empowered. I love helping people and I feel like I’m a facilitator.
Also, I’ve worked as a costume designer, so it’s fashion with a costume design element, especially when I’m working with someone who is making appearance!
The real buzz is Michelle Obama wearing your designs for the State of the Union address! Congrats!
What was the inspiration this season?
The colors from the sky, hematite, lush into cloud colors.
Most dreadful part of fashion week?
Fortunately nothing yet….there’s noting worse than a last minute model cancellation.
I really enjoy having a presentation so much more than an runway show. It’s more relaxed, I get to be out and talking—tell people what you’ve done and the fabrics… it’s not as aloof as a runway show—it’s more like bringing people into your world!
What’s up with not having a website?
It’s been hard for me to figure this out. It’s coming soon!