The Many Shapes of Karolina Zmarlak

“Sexiness is a fun form of power,” is the decidedly empowered mantra of Polish-born, F.I.T.-educated Karolina Zmarlak, “As a woman designing for women, I would like my clients to express their own sensuality.” Zmarlak launched her ready-to-wear collection in Fall 2009 with a collection called Fluid Foundations—which is, in its own way, quite feminine and empowering; it was inspired by a wearer’s agency experimenting with the styling of the designs. LEFT: PHOTO BY JOE TERMINI

Zmarlak’s Spring/Summer 2010 collection, “Ocular Geometries,” plays with geometry, and shows a strong sense of volume and space. The collection, the designer says, was inspired by the nomadic life of the modern women and spiecifically, “the Maghrebian exploration of art and culture.” Using motifs from traditional Middle Eastern designs, Zmarlak turns curved lines into silhouette. Citing Balenciaga as an inspiration, she says that, “Design starts with shape, it has to reinvent allowing fantasy and stabilize for functionality.” Powerful words, indeed.