Irina Lakicevic (25), born in Pristina, Kosovo, works as a dentist in the rainy Norwegian town of Bergen. During international fashion weeks, however, Irina becomes the favorite model for the world’s most prestigious fashion bloggers.
The Lacicevic-family came to the refugee reception center in Sandnessjøen in 2003. In Pristina Irina’s mother was a psychiatrist, leading a neurosurgical department at one of the largest hospitals there. Her father was the manager of a shopping mall.
Moving to a refugee reception center with bunk beds in pine, in a village of barely 600 inhabitants, was a shock.
Lacicevic family left a middle-class home, a city apartment and Irina’s mother’s silver dress in satin (Irina’s first memory of fashion). They left a whole life in turmoil when Albanians began to expel the 7,000 Serbs who lived in the city. Today her mother is working as an enrolled nurse in Sandnessjøen. Her father works in a nursery.
“I have always had my own style and a tendency to combine things in a different way to the people around me. Living for fashion magazines and photography just made an extra step towards blogging quite natural,” Irina explains. “A regular day for me means getting up at about 6am, going to work as a dentist, coming home around 5-6 pm to continue work on blog related things. Answering interviews, editing photos, going through trends, garments designers and plotting what to do next.”
“To be a blogger is not as easy as before,” she admits. “The market is mature you may fall in the trap to blog about yesterday’s news,” she continues. “But I admire famous women like Carine Roitfeld and Taylor Tomasi Hill, who not only is my favorite designers, but business women as well.
“OK, so while we had the Biblical flood over here last fall (you know, rain for 40 days and nights is normal summer on the west-coast) and I was dealing with re-arranging my apartment, and didn’t this turn out to be a decently photogenic corner?” asked Irina on her blog Portable package last November. You may read more of her fashion ideas there.
“And a good opportunity to show you couple of outfits that usually don’t make it to the blog as it is getting colder and colder to shoot outside. Basically obsessed with this striped shirt and high-waist jeans.”
What really drives Lakicevic is her passion for fashion and her possibility to chasing dreams. While for some, our clothing serves as a mere practicality, for the Bergen blogger, it speaks volumes about the wearer, “I think whether we like it or not, how we look is the first thing people notice when they meet you, and immediately make an impression. So, it is a type of non-verbal communication, giving us means to visually express ourselves. It is also very, very fun,” she says.
What makes Irina, a professional dentist, to dedicate so much of her time to fashion and blogging?
“My dream was always to work with fashion,” she says. “I wanted to study design at Central Saint Martins in London, but I never dared.” To be an editor, a photographer and a stylist is a perfect situation for me.”
Any advice to people interested in fashion?
“Don’t have too many of the same things in the wardrobe, I am always trying to fill the gaps in my closet. I also swear by clothing tailored to your body type, and knowing what suits you, disregarding trends. When it comes to getting ready, it shouldn’t take longer than 30 minutes, after that you are just going to screw it up, or overdo it, or at least I am,” she concludes.