As the first brand to offer a live and interactive 360° perspective to the runway (back in 2012) and the first European label to open the Mercedes-Benz China Fashion Week in Peking (in 2011), it’s fair to call designer Dorothee Schumacher “ahead of the curb”.

Now, as the brand celebrates its 30th birthday this year, we see it step into its next exciting stage of evolution through an innovative collaboration with e-commerce giant, Farfetch.

“Investing in the digital future of my brand, and being able to take my wholesalers with me on that journey has always been a heartfelt wish of mine,” explains Dorothee. “I’ve always wanted to translate emotions into digital content, and since opening my own e-commerce, this has always been at the core of our digital strategy."

And so, while we wait on tenterhooks for what is to follow this January, we spoke to the German native about her vision for the Dorothee Schumacher woman, how it's evolved, and what might be the best bit of advice she’s ever received...

You’ve always been something of a trailblazer.  
I love to learn! I love to take in new information, to get to know new technologies and the possibilities that they offer, and to implement them for my business. Even though I am not a digital native, this is what fuels and inspires me. I always try to go through the world with an open mind and an open heart, which allows me to stay au courant.

How, then, has your vision for the brand adapted over the years?
Women have come a long way since 1989. When I started, it still felt like a revolution to combine femininity and strength in my designs. Nowadays, I feel equally touched and contented when I look at all those young women who know exactly what they want to do, who they want to be, where they want to live and who they want to be in a relationship with.

It’s amazing to see how the previous generation has paved the way for this new self-understanding to come into existence. The dialogue between those who witnessed the journey and those who now benefit from it today is as important as it is inspiring!

How do you define the Dorothee Schumacher woman?
I always imagine the same woman – a perennial go-getter, who effortlessly combines all of her facets into a contagious joie de vivre. She is a business woman, a lover, a globetrotter, and a best friend. There are no limits for her in this world, because her mind knows no limits. From collection to collection, her story changes but the woman remains the same. 

Does your own personal background play into this at all?
My parents travelled the world with me and equipped me with tolerance, open-mindedness, and an everlasting appreciation for cultural diversity. This equally resulted in a desire for freedom and a sense of basic trust that still defines me to this day. 

It is a beautiful question, because I never particularly thought about it – but making my mind up about it today shows me how incremental my upbringing was to the beliefs and values I have now, and that I try to pass on to my own family today.

What advice have you picked up along the way?
My mother always told me: “Stagnation results in regression.” I know for a fact that this is true. Keep on going, people!

Dress like the perennial go-getter you are; shop Dorothee Schumacher:

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