Sophia Kokosalaki (born in Greece, 1972)
With Alexander McQueen and Hussein Chalayan, Sophia Kokosalaki became part of a school of London-trained designers who more than held their own alongside their european counterparts.
"When I do a show," she says, "I will throw up a mix of the feminine and commercially viable and then I will add my London aspect of seeing things, the experimentation, my rock aspect, and merge them a bit. The one is not good on it's own but nor is the other."
"You have to love it and you have to find people you are similarly obsessed. I would definitely get bored if I didn't experiment..."
"When I graduated, I admitted to myself, I didn't want to be an academic."
"I just want to produce interesting clothes, " she says. And if this seems overly simplistic, it should be pointed out, that she dedicates almost every hour of each and every day to doing just that with a passion and integrity that few others even aspire to. It is, by now, the stuff of legend that she spent no less than six months lovingly inscribing her own diary onto a jacket for her final collection at Central Saint Martins.
"I want every garment that goes out there to have something," Sophia says. "I'm not against dressing a lot of people but wouldn't like to do it light-heartedly or only for profit. I don't understand the concept of having a lot of people designing for you who you never even meet and then selling those designs under your name."