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Our

People

Our

People

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Deirdre Quinn, Co-Founder and CEO

A born entrepreneur, Deirdre Quinn’s early love of the craft inspired a degree in fashion design. Her passion for production and merchandising led her to Donna Karan, Escada and Liz Claiborne, where she traveled to more than seventy countries. In 1996, she joined forces with two other fashion veterans and visionaries, Shun Yen Siu and Ida Siu, to found Lafayette 148 New York, creating one of the very rare, vertically integrated fashion brands. More than twenty years later, Deirdre’s boundless drive to discover what’s next continues to lead the brand towards the future, including the move to a soaring, sustainably built loft space in the Brooklyn Navy Yard. A member of the Fashion Institute of Technology’s Board of Trustees, Deirdre has a lifelong love of learning and a devotion to enriching the world through education. 

 

Deirdre Quinn, Co-Founder and CEO

A born entrepreneur, Deirdre Quinn’s early love of the craft inspired a degree in fashion design. Her passion for production and merchandising led her to Donna Karan, Escada and Liz Claiborne, where she traveled to more than seventy countries. In 1996, she joined forces with two other fashion veterans and visionaries, Shun Yen Siu and Ida Siu, to found Lafayette 148 New York, creating one of the very rare, vertically integrated fashion brands. More than twenty years later, Deirdre’s boundless drive to discover what’s next continues to lead the brand towards the future, including the move to a soaring, sustainably built loft space in the Brooklyn Navy Yard. A member of the Fashion Institute of Technology’s Board of Trustees, Deirdre has a lifelong love of learning and a devotion to enriching the world through education. 

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Barbara Gast, Chief Creative Officer

Growing up in Hamburg, Germany, in a family of apparel designers, Barbara charted her own path with dreams of becoming an architect. She studied graphic design before moving to Venice, where the city’s flourishing pret-a-porter business inspired a return to her fashion roots with the opening of her own made-to-measure workshop. Over forty years, she carefully honed her craft, becoming a renowned expert in the field of knitwear, working with Zegna, Agnona, Valentino and Gucci, among other legendary brands, before joining Lafayette 148 New York in 2006. Fluent in Italian, French, German and English, Barbara leads all aspects of creative for the brand with her irrepressible passion for precision, European technique, and appreciation for art, architecture and design.

Barbara Gast, Chief Creative Officer

Growing up in Hamburg, Germany, in a family of apparel designers, Barbara charted her own path with dreams of becoming an architect. She studied graphic design before moving to Venice, where the city’s flourishing pret-a-porter business inspired a return to her fashion roots with the opening of her own made-to-measure workshop. Over forty years, she carefully honed her craft, becoming a renowned expert in the field of knitwear, working with Zegna, Agnona, Valentino and Gucci, among other legendary brands, before joining Lafayette 148 New York in 2006. Fluent in Italian, French, German and English, Barbara leads all aspects of creative for the brand with her irrepressible passion for precision, European technique, and appreciation for art, architecture and design.

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Emily Smith, Creative Director

An Atlanta native, Emily Smith was enthralled by fashion from a very young age, which led her to Savannah College of Art and Design, where she earned her Bachelor of Fine Arts. Following internships at Eskandar and Bill Blass, she joined Lafayette 148 New York in 2002 as a Design Assistant. Since then, her warm, collaborative design approach, technical mastery, and gift for perfecting a garment from the inside out propelled her rise to Creative Director for the brand. From trend forecasting to developing each collection, to traveling the globe in search of the finest fabrics, Emily has helped guide Lafayette 148 New York to a new level of luxury—and built a gifted team to chart the brand’s next chapter.

 

Emily Smith, Creative Director

An Atlanta native, Emily Smith was enthralled by fashion from a very young age, which led her to Savannah College of Art and Design, where she earned her Bachelor of Fine Arts. Following internships at Eskandar and Bill Blass, she joined Lafayette 148 New York in 2002 as a Design Assistant. Since then, her warm, collaborative design approach, technical mastery, and gift for perfecting a garment from the inside out propelled her rise to Creative Director for the brand. From trend forecasting to developing each collection, to traveling the globe in search of the finest fabrics, Emily has helped guide Lafayette 148 New York to a new level of luxury—and built a gifted team to chart the brand’s next chapter.

Our Path

Follow our journey, from our first days to our future.

 

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