Sisters Pookie and Louisa Burch weren’t always interested in fashion. “I was definitely into clothes,” Pookie says of her high school and college years. “I thought a lot about color and studied photography in school. I was probably more interested in art and it evolved into being interested in fashion,” she continues. “I liked fashion photography—Bruce Weber, Wolfgang Tillmans— so that probably contributed.” Even now, eight months after launching their clothing label Trademark, Pookie explains that, “We don’t think about ourselves when we make clothes, we think about clothes as something separate. We try to think about all women.”
Trademark, which already includes menswear, womenswear, and accessories, was conceived as a label based in “classic shapes, bold colors, [and] innovative fabrics.” If the label has a trademark it is, the sisters say, “pleated skirts.” Contemporary artists continue to inspire Pookie and Louisa—among the names they cite are Barnett Newman, Rineke Dijkstra, Wade Guyton, and Nicholas Nixon. This autumn, the first Trademark store will open at 95 Grand Street in SoHo. “Opening a store is a huge undertaking—everything from finding the store to renovating the space,” they admit. “We feel very lucky to have our own environment to present our collection.”
When we asked Swedish model Tilda Lindstam to nominate her favorite new label for our “Models Off Duty” series, she immediately thought of Trademark. Lindstam, who says she became a model “by accident,” is something of an Interview favorite. She’s modeled for Pookie and Louisa’s former stepmother, Tory Burch, and starred in Trademark’s inaugural look book.
TILDA LINDSTAM: Hi, it’s me.
POOKIE BURCH: Hi Tilda.
LINDSTAM: What’s up?
BURCH: How are you?
LINDSTAM: Golden, how are you?
BURCH: Good. Are you in New York?
LINDSTAM: I am. I just got back.
BURCH: Oh good. Okay, I think we’re ready.
INTERVIEW: How did you first meet? What made you decide to work together on Trademark’s first look book?
BURCH: Tilda and I are actually friends. We met through a mutual friend—that’s how I first heard of Tilda. We felt like she was the right fit personality wise, and she was our first choice.
INTERVIEW: Pookie, do you remember your first impression of Tilda?
BURCH: My first impression of Tilda was how funny and goofy she is. She has an endearing dry sense of humor and takes the modeling thing with a grain of salt, even though she is truly inspiring and beautiful. I love that about her.
INTERVIEW: Is there such a thing as a “Trademark girl”?
BURCH: I don’t know if there’s necessarily a “Trademark girl” or if it’s just a funny expression—but it’s definitely someone who’s independent, has their own sense of style, knows how put things together, and has a strong sense of what they want as far as getting dressed. Tilda definitely fits that kind of girl. A Trademark girl also likes dogs and Tild likes dogs, so that’s also part of it. [laughs]
INTERVIEW: When was the last time you saw each other?
BURCH: We haven’t seen each other for a while. I’m actually thinking now that there’s a lot we should update Tilda on but—
LINSTAM: Yeah, you really should.
BURCH: Not on this phone call. [laughs]
LINDSTAM: We better catch up. [laughs] Was it the shoot? No.
BURCH: No. [It was] probably on the street because we live in the same neighborhood.
LINDSTAM: We do run into each other a lot.
INTERVIEW: Tilda, do your friends frequently ask you to model for their brands? Is that ever awkward?
LINDSTAM: Not really, actually. That rarely happens. [laughs] I was very happy to be doing the Trademark thing, but no one really wants me to do their stuff usually.
BRUCH: I think that for us it was just the right fit and the right timing, and it felt very natural to work with a friend in the beginning. Our friend that styled the first Look Book also had worked with Tilda a lot, and he had a really strong relationship with her. When you do something for the first time, it’s nice for it to feel like friends and family.
LINDSTAM: We were just a big group of friends at that shoot.
INTERVIEW: We you fashionable when you were at school? Were you the best-dressed girls?
BURCH: No, I was not the well-dressed girl at school. [laughs] [Now] we wear the same thing basically every day, which is some form of our own uniform. I think when you’re working a lot that is pretty common.
LINDSTAM: I mean I thought I was, but I definitely wasn’t. I tried, but looking back, that was a big failure.
BURCH: I think high school is a tough time; it’s not the most definitive time for your personal style because you’re still figuring it out.
INTERVIEW: Is there anything you are particularly embarrassed about having worn?
BURCH: I don’t think that much about the evolution of my own personal style, but I guess I would say my prom dress, to be honest. It was not something I’m too proud of looking back. It was a lavender, strapless, not very modern dress…I don’t know how this turned into a prom conversation. I apologize. I’m sorry Tilda.
LINDSTAM: No it’s okay. I got asked to prom last year actually.
BURCH: That’s cute.
LINDSTAM: Yeah. I kindly declined his offer. It was a prom at the Waldorf though. It would have been very fancy. Next time…