In case you don't know this story; some years ago I wrote about Betty Hobcraft's graduate collection. Karolina read this at an impressionable age. And thus, ultimately, we end up in a position where I have to apologise to Karolina's mother for the fact that her house is full of WILDLY expensive lace and nothing resembling a conventional career path for her only daughter.
On the upside, I like Karolina lots - she's a true creative artist, she flaps her arms when she gets excited, and she knows more about the history of lingerie than anyone barring possibly Lori-master-of-bras. The combination is endearing, and the designs are to die for. She's heading on towards being the first real couture lingerie brand (there are some amazing corset brands, but not so much lingerie as such). Due to the age difference, I had to spend the first few years pretending her designs weren't erotic, but I've got over it now.
For this shoot I somehow managed to persuade her to lend me a one-off item, a silk cape with a boned, structure neck and shoulders, which had vexed her greatly as she isn't used to handling acres of fabric! We spent hours fanning it. We also borrowed the bee lingerie set, which combines a honey-comb lace made on vintage machines and handstitched together by the lacemakers with gold metal bee charms. You can find her current collections or commission a piece just for you here - Karolina Laskowska's website.
Photographer: Paul Winkler
Make-up and Hair: Emma Watts
House of Burlesque Performers Gracie Disgrace wears Karolina's one-off couture cape with Little Women bra and brief and our cupless vargas and stockings. I suspect that's probably our stunt pistol too, I seem to recall PP were finding weapons down the back of the sofa for ages, they'll probably never let us play again.
Studio: Playful Promises
Ridiculous signs: graphic design Guru.gg, construction Joshua Horobin
Shoes models own