She is a producer, an entrepreneur, a mother and a designer embracing fashion for a woman who is +50. I have noticed Erika Ehrman-Repola on Instagram, once again, for her elegance and discreet elegance, for her natural beauty and unfrivolous sensuality. She agreed on being featured, so please meet another fierce 'shero' who reinvented her life at 50.
Style + substance = empowerment. Are you on board?
EER - YES
Your personal style in three words
E - Elegant, eclectic, bohemian
On shopping with a purpose
E - I love textiles and texture, so I am often inspired by that first, I prefer to buy items that are not overly trendy, and feel unique.
Do you feel like sharing one secret?
E - I hate spending a lot on clothes. My dirty little secret is that … sometimes I find pieces at Forever 21 and integrate them into my wardrobe. People have no idea and are often complimentary and think it’s some high ticketed designer piece. It’s all in how you style it and wear it, sometimes I even cutout the tags and no one knows.
Your relationship with fashion: single, married, it’s complicated or …
E - I am happily and newly divorced and it has made me fall in love with fashion all over again, because I dress exactly how I want and experiment more too.
What’s the one thing a woman should do to feel powerful?
E - With regard to fashion, feeling comfortable in your own skin and what you are wearing. If you don’t feel good in your clothes, you don’t feel as empowered. I designed my line of dresses with that ideology in mind, I don’t want you to be a slave to your clothes. You should not have to starve yourself, or go to spinning class five times a week to feel sexy or beautiful to fit into a dress. It’s a state of mind, and it’s about being comfortable first and foremost, and then whatever you wear will look amazing, because you feel confident.
When did you find your confidence?
E - I think as I was about to turn 50. I thought I look pretty damn good for my age and I felt sexier than ever before.
How do we get rid of the princess/cute/pretty/pink stereotype?
E - Celebrating all types of women and styles. I think being unique, embracing individuality whatever it is, might normalize it and help.
You look at your closet holding your morning coffee ready to get dressed: personal uniform or outburst of creativity?
E - Depends on the season. In the spring and summer I love to wear colors and patterns and I often live in jeans and dresses. In the winter, I find I don’t wear as much color, but I love texture still, so I often have a furry something, a sweater or coat, and my favorite pair of red booties. I try to have at least an accent of color somewhere.
Which irritates you more and why: “Sustainable fashion is boring” or “Fashion is frivolous”
E - I am not sure I find either irritating. I think both statements can be true or false depending on context. Sustainable fashion, if done right, can be interesting. Fashion can be frivolous, but it’s also about self-expression and it’s about showing personality, even if it’s a uniform. Frivolous makes me think of excessive amount of the same things, but if you can afford a great piece and it makes you feel good, it gives you that extra pump of confidence, then why not?