fashion magazine
Photographer Angela Fama interviews Designer/Make-up/Hair Artist Solana at Gene coffee shop on a sunny late afternoon
Photography by ANGELA FAMA - www.angelafama.com
Styling - KERRY WEINRAUCH @ NOBASURA
Hair/Make-up - Solana Rompré
Model Chloe @ NOBASURA Rad Kids
Featuring designs by:
Great Northern Way (Solana Rompré: On Etsy and On Facebook)
Angela: ok now. I think we're set! So, give me your name.

Solana: Solana. Rompré. (Chuckle chuckle) I have two. I have more than two actually.

A: Tell me the story about how you found Great Northern Way

S: Great Northern Way is a reference to one of my favorite street names in Vancouver dividing two of my favorite areas. I was riding my bike one day with my girlfriend and we were talking about names for my new line. You know when you're thinking of names or something really hard and you're yelling out names of things you see? She's like "Lampost!" and I'm like "Streetsign!" "Great Northern Way!" and then I was like "Oh yes, actually, that's really good." It speaks to me because it's our country, it's what's around us and I'm from the North.

A: Where did the idea for the necklaces come from?

S: It came from my love of thrift shopping and scoring. the finding of treasures. I was in a small town thrift shop in a rural area of northern BC. There was this big display of Native American art, traditional to the area I am assuming. I found a beautiful beaded necklace with an interesting pattern that really spoke to me. I took it home to my bohemian mother on Salt Spring Island who has a lot of experience in beading, crafting and making things with her hands. She helped me out with the pattern. The necklaces are my interpretation of it with slight complications and more modern color combinations. It's kind of my contemporary twist on that pattern

A: And you were saying that you're dad and your.?

S: Well, my dad and my step dad both independently are jewelers.

A: Oh really? Your mom's got a taste for them, hey?

S: Ha ha, ya. She's got a thing for jewelers. They're both silver jewelers. Jewelry is in my blood. I've grown up around the manufacturing, production and design, all of that. I had a taste of it all from an early age and this is my own interpretation of that.

A: What is that one? (Pointing to a beaded bit that is different from the rest)

S: This guy is a prototype. I've been working on one that is more of a rounded pouch and I'm thinking about putting it on leather chord just because I like it better right now. but that's a whole other story. This style is my favorite {speaking of the one she is wearing, in the pattern mentioned previously}, the one that I've had a lot of interest in because I wear them all the time. From a kind of selfish place I originally made the first one thinking: "oh, I just want a different color combination". I wore it at the beach this past summer {2010} and ran into a bunch of friends there. The friends wanted the necklace when they saw them so I started making a bunch of orders there and it became something to do at the beach. As the weather changed I've become a little more productive with it but they are pretty labor intensive.

A: How long does it take?

S: It think it takes about 2 or 3 hours, I've never just sat down and made one start to finish, I usually span it out over a few days. sometimes I'll go a week without doing any and then sometimes I'll get really into a pod cast or something and get a lot of work done.

A: I imagine it's pretty laborious with your hands?

S: Ya, and sometimes it's just the position you are in, it's not really something you can do passively, like while watching a movie or something.

A: I'll always try and sew, do crafts and things while watching movies and I'll get half way through and I have to stop because I realize I am totally not atching the movie. Sometimes I watch Dirty Dancing repeatedly because I've already seen it, I don't have to actually watch it!

S: And there are certain shows that I can watch, like, oh, you know. Top Model. that kind of thing, where you don't actually have to pay attention.

But not Mad Men. You have to watch every moment of that.

A: I hear you on that! (Chuckle chuckle)