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Gina Pia Cooper: And if someone hasn't seen your work, and you had to describe it, not literally what it looked like, but a descriptive name for it, what would it be?

Liz Collins: I can think of the ways that I explain it to a prospective backer, or someone in kind of dry industry terminology. It's fashion forward knitwear, ranging from ready-to-wear to couture one-of-a-kind items. In order to wear my clothes, you have to be comfortable with your body. Don't necessarily have to be slim, but it's body wear. It's usually fitted. It's very sexy in a very mysterious way.

Gina Pia Cooper: I read a description of your work as neo-punk.

Liz Collins: I saw that. I liked that.

Gina Pia Cooper: But I also see something antique.

Liz Collins: Yes. Victorian. Yes. There's actually a strong Victorian sensibility. I'm not sure where it comes from. Maybe just an affinity for that style and that time. And also some Medieval.

Gina Pia Cooper: And your antique cheesecloth pieces. I looked at them and I thought, this is Versailles! It reminded me of the era of the Sun King for some reason.

Liz Collins: Nice.

Gina Pia Cooper: As though the garment had aged. That you were looking at an old version of it. Almost Baroque, and beautiful and fragile, but strong at the same time. And the Baroque architecture.

Liz Collins: Yes. I've always been somehow inspired by architecture. My grandmother wanted to be an architect, and she never got the chance. I thought maybe I should be. But there's definitely a romantic sensibility that is a part of me and my emotional being. That's where I feel very connected to the kind of female image of, say, Wuthering Heights. I'm kind of a time-traveller.

Gina Pia Cooper: Definitely. Yes.

Liz Collins: There's a mode I get into where I'm just picking from all of these things. I looked at Botticelli's paintings, and the clothes in those paintings are something that stays with me, and the way the fabric drapes over the body. But also, the idea of women trapped in attics going crazy.

Gina Pia Cooper: I see that. Like The Madwoman of Chaillot.

Liz Collins: Yes. Or Miss Havisham in Great Expectations.

Gina Pia Cooper: Yes. That's what those gauze things look like.

Liz Collins: Yes. Like a ghost -- an ethereal ghost-like woman who who was a spinster. But very beautiful and sexy. And she was just under-appreciated and thought to be insane.

Gina Pia Cooper: Yes. Like Jane Eyre.