Cornejo in London... Sophie's Choice... Holiday Mingling With Mizrahi...

WWD talked to designer Maria Cornejo over coffee at Claridge’s.

A Zero  Maria Cornejo men’s look

A Zero + Maria Cornejo men’s look.

Photo By Courtesy Photo

DESIGNS ON LONDON: Maria Cornejo returned to London earlier this week to attend the British Fashion Awards and mark her collection’s launch in Harvey Nichols for spring. The Chilean designer already counts Dover Street Market, The Cross and Joseph as her London stockists. Cornejo, who studied at London’s Ravensbourne College in the Eighties, had a London-based collection with John Richmond and moved to New York in 1996. Over coffee at Claridge’s, she said she’s observed a few differences between how British and American women interpret her collections. “In London, there’s a slight disrespect about rules. What I’ve learned from New York is that customers like things to be wearable and comfortable,” said Cornejo, who’s recently added men’s wear and swim wear to her Zero + Maria Cornejo line. “Women have many lives in a day, and I try to do the best I can to accommodate that. If I have a meeting at my son’s school, I don’t want to look like a total fashion freak. I think, ‘Could I wear this to Trader Joe’s?’” she said with a smile. Cornejo’s business partner Marysia Woroniecka said they are hoping to open a London store next year. “We’re thinking about it — it could happen in late spring, even if it was something we did more as a project,” said Woroniecka. “We wouldn’t want it to be just another shop front on a street.”

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