We had the good fortune of connecting with Frida Barfod and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Frida, what inspires you?
I’m very inspired by storytelling. Every single one of my projects has been build around a small world and it’s characters. Sometimes the stories are created from existing characters. At other times I create them myself. But the stories are always quirky, humorous and often take place in a playful and naive world. It creates a positive energy in the work and when I’m in doubt I can always find the answer within my story and it’s characters. It feels as though I can disappear into this small world with all it’s ideas, impressions and experiments. I work a lot with colours and textiles and therefore my stories often take place in an environment where I can draw inspiration from exactly that. In one of my collections “the cake eating people” I created a story about a group of characters enjoying themselves vigorously eating cake. Therefore there has been taken a big bite out of all the brims of the hats. By this I hope people sense the story behind the pieces and are amused.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I have a background in both design and crafts. When working with hats I use both skills which gives me an advantage. I graduated from the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts and Design in 2015 with a degree in Fashion. Thereafter I graduated as a millinery from the Royal Danish Theatre in 2018. My work is very sculptural and therefore I test a lot of materials, textile techniques, colours and shapes to reach my wanted result. I see my hats as little pieces of art which can be worn. I also deeply love working with others through collaborations to challenge my design and to learn their skills. I’ve previously worked with designers such as Lærke Valum, Kopenhagen Fur, Nicholas Nybro and Grønkjær. With a background in both theatre and fashion my designs reflects both. Storytelling and theatre goes hand in hand but I actually started working with storytelling way before I entered the world of theatre. Sometimes it can be challenging prioritising my time between working for theatres and doing my own design projects but I’m working on finding a perfect balance. I’m passionate about expressing myself artistically through my hats but at the same time I also want to focus on the old craft. Keeping it alive and also challenge its possibilities and techniques. I hope the old crafts and slow fashion will win forward and replace bad quality and overproduction.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
We’d start the day with a buck load of homemade danish pancakes and sit on the balcony enjoying a cup of coffee in the sun. Afterwards we’d go out and enjoy the spring sun in Copenhagen. Walking in one of the many green parks, go past my workshop and eat a delicious hot dog from a classic hot dog cart. Another important thing to see in Denmark is the beautiful nature filled with inspiration. Maybe a long walk in the park where the beech trees has just bloomed. And the sun shining down between the treetops. During the long walk stopping for a bagged lunch in a quiet place listening to the birds chirping. In the evening we’d go to The Royal Danish Theatre to be inspired by the wonderful stories, beautiful backdrops, wild costumes and of course the hats. Afterwards we’d top the night off with a couple of cold beers in a dark and cozy pub or go dancing in a crowd of happy people with funky dance moves.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I’ve always been fascinated by fantasy and fairytales. Since I was little I’ve sought out these kind of worlds and made some up myself. Worlds that may or may not exist and that you can dream about being taken away to. Taken away to a world of trolls, elves and cute cuddly creatures which fascinated me a lot. You meet a lot of these creatures in Harry Potter. As many other kids I dreamt about getting my letter from Hogwarts and being taken away to this adventurous world. I therefore want to shout out to Harry Potter and fairytales in general.
Katrine Estrup Kia Hartelius Kristoffer Juul Anna Dyrby