Pamela gives us some insight about her history of making her collection in Los Angeles, and what that means for her and the brand.
“I have been working with the same team of pattern-makers for 20 years, basically since I started my business. At the very beginning, I made my own patterns, but as my collection and business grew, I decided to work with specialists. They opened up so many possibilities! I feel so lucky that they have stayed with me for so long. They are the driving force of the atelier.
When I start working on the collection, the inspiration really comes from fabrics, so I don’t ‘sketch’ as one thinks that traditional designers do. My sketches are really largely academic, and this helps me work immediately with the pattern-makers to create the patterns from the flat sketches.”
“Details are crucial! My clothes are actually fairly simple - I’m strict with my design and the process. The details make the garments, really. We use French seams, lingerie straps, hand-welted button-holes, pleating…. Each detail is specific to each piece, and it’s all about working with the character of the fabric.”
“The Pajama Blouse and Drawstring Pant have been around since I started! I design for myself, ultimately, and these pieces are classics for me. They are chic and simple - perfectly casual in the day, and add heels to make them a flawless evening look. We consider them Pamela Barish classics, so we decided to make these pieces the first items available for purchase online!”
“Fabrics are crucial. I have to want to wear everything I make, and it has to feel right against the skin. That’s why we use cashmere instead of wool, for example. All of our fabrics are European - pretty much everything comes from Italy, France and England. All of the shirting we use is Swiss - they make the best shirting cotton. I have been working with these mills for a long time, but of course I am always on the hunt for new, unique fabrics.
The collection is very personal, so the new pieces we make come from what I’m missing in my closet. That’s where the inspiration for the individual pieces comes from. The influences for the collections aren’t necessarily fashion-based however. Usually they are based on a book, or a place, or an image, or a piece of art. I don’t make clothes for the broader fashion market, I make clothes for myself and confidently stylish women. The more intimate my business is, the more I love it.”