Roisin and fashion designer Roksanda Ilincic spoke to The Times about their muse relationship:
Tall, beautiful and impossibly glamorous in her own designs, the Belgrade-born designer Roksanda Ilincic doesn’t look like she needs a muse. But her chosen one, the singer Roisin Murphy, is equally self-assured when it comes to fashion — an adept image-maker, she styles herself for shoots and videos.
“Being a female designer, you know what you want and what your friends like, so it’s not necessary to have a muse,” says Ilincic. “At the same time, it is lovely to have a Roisin, who understands what I am doing, but who takes my clothes and wears them in such an original way.”
The two have different styles. “Roksanda is more classic than I am,” says Murphy. “If I am going to be elegant, I like there to be a touch of humour as well.” For a recent appearance on Friday Night with Jonathan Ross, she surprised Ilincic by wearing two of her jackets at once. “It looked amazing,” says the designer.
Despite their differences, they each recognise something of themselves in the other’s work. “Roisin’s music reflects what I like,” says Ilincic. “It’s edgy but feminine, and has a strong woman behind it.” Murphy counters: “Roksanda’s designs have elegance, but there is also an avant-garde edge.”
They first met when Ilincic gave Murphy a dress, but the relationship quickly developed into a firm friendship. “I still have that first dress she gave me,” says Murphy. “I wore it in the first painting my boyfriend [the artist Simon Henwood] did of me. I also hung it on the wardrobe in the You Know Me Better video.” For Ilincic and Murphy — two strong, creative, independent women — the muse relationship is one of equals.