DIERDRE ROFFONI - XIRENA Q&A
Dierdre Roffoni, founder of Findings, a multi-label showroom that exhibits in Los Angeles, New York, Paris, Dallas and Atlanta, started her own label, Xirena, in 2013. Offering a cool and comfortable L.A. aesthetic, Xirena has become the warm weather 'go-to' for the woman who values understated style and comfort.
STIL: You founded Findings, a multi-label agency with branches in New York, Los Angeles, Dallas, Atlanta and Paris, in 1989. Findings is one of the World's leading multi-label agencies. You then founded your own label, Xirena, in 2013, can you tell us what was the inspiration behind Xirena?
DR: We travel to Spain each summer and I’ve always loved the way (local) girls ride around town on their vespas with white shirts and colorful swim bottoms. In 2013, I came home with the idea of starting a lingerie line and 3 weeks later Xirena was born. Once we created the lingerie, I knew we couldn’t stop there. We set out to make the perfect white shirt and that’s how it all started.
STIL: What’s in the name?
DR: Xirena is derived from the Spanish word Sirena, meaning mermaid. The idea for the line came to me while on vacation in Formentera and our first pieces had iridescent elements which made me think of mermaids.
STIL: Can you describe for us a little about your creative process?
DR: My eyes are always open. I am consistently looking for amazing vintage pieces, textiles, and great finds wherever I’m travelling. At home I frequent local flea markets. My favorites are Long Beach Antique Market, The Rose Bowl in Pasadena and more curated shows like Pickwick Vintage and A Current Affair Market Place, both in Los Angeles.
STIL: How does sustainability feature within Xirena?
DR: We support our local community and produce 95% of the Xirena collection in Downtown Los Angeles. The fabric we use to create our printed lingerie is sourced from upcycled fabric. We have also repurposed our cotton prints to create masks this past year and are continuing to pursue ways to be more sustainable in future seasons.
STIL: In your mind, what kind of woman wears Xirena?
DR: The Xirena woman is unpretentious. She wears her clothing; the clothing doesn’t wear her. Her style always feels easy and effortless.
STIL: How do you want women to feel when they put on Xirena?
DR: Comfortable and cool.
STIL: What are the core Xirena items that every girl should own?
DR: The Beau shirt, the Rex pants, the Boden shirt dress, a sweatshirt, and a lingerie set for travel.
STIL: What have your greatest challenges with the business been?
DR: This year our biggest challenge was Covid 19. Virtual selling was difficult for my customers to embrace but we have managed to find our way together.
STIL: Which labels other than Xirena would we find in your own wardrobe?
DR: My closet is filled with Isabel Marant, Ulla Johnson, Forte Forte, Free City and an overabundance of vintage denim.
STIL: You travel extensively with your collection, and you are not only showing Xirena but also overseeing all the collections that show through your agency Findings (amongst them is Stil favourite Ulla Johnson)– how do you find relaxation and equilibrium after such a trip?
DR: Exercise and meditation are key to my mental health and laughter is essential for me as a person. I spend a lot of time outdoors hiking and walking the streets near my home. I love architecture and discovering new neighborhoods that I never knew existed.
STIL: Is there anything that you do or take religiously every day?
DR: Yes…my coffee, red light therapy and meditation.
STIL: How do you manage your work/ life balance?
DR: It’s not easy. I try and turn work off when I’m at home but find it difficult. “Alone” time regenerates me and one of the benefits of living in Los Angeles is time in my car listening to podcasts and music.
STIL: Your go-to weeknight meal?
DR: La Scala chopped salad…the best in LA!
STIL: What is your favourite book?
DR: Anything from Caroline Myss or Brene Brown
STIL: What’s the best advice you have ever been given?
DR: Try not to be reactive, and ask questions before reaching a conclusion (this is an ongoing work in progress for me!)
STIL: A Xirena style tip for Stil customers?!
DR: Nothing too ‘perfect’ always works for me. An oversized Beau shirt, the perfect vintage jean and great accessories can never be beat.
Dierdre Roffoni has, both with her multi-label showrooms and her label Xirena, achieved global credibility in the world of fashion. She is creative, modern, and she has a way of staying one step ahead. All this and yet in typical Xirena - L.A. style, she somehow makes time to enjoy life and live the relaxed bohemian lifestyle that Xirena is all about.