Carmen and Joana on the <br>Joy of Summer
Borgo Girls

Carmen and Joana on the
Joy of Summer

Our two co-founders share their vision for the season ahead

Having collaborated over the years in various roles throughout the fashion world, Creative Director Carmen Borgonovo and Commercial Director Joana de Noronha launched Borgo de Nor with a selection of their now-instantly-recognisable dresses in 2017. Today, celebrating the launch of Spring 2019, the power pair invite us into their Notting Hill studio to talk juggling busy London lives, the inspiration behind the new collection and where they’ll be wearing it (hint: serious getaway tips below).


I wake up at 6.30am

I usually buy freshly baked bread and brioche across the street, have breakfast with my boys and take them to school. Weather permitting, I’ll go for an early morning walk or run in Battersea Park to release feel-good hormones and boost my energy.

I thrive on a busy schedule

The more I have to do, the more I do, and the better organised and efficient I feel. I love a project…or many projects at a time.

My favourite piece from Spring 2019

Is the Salma dress in the yellow Hibiscus print. It’s classic, yet sexy and so comfortable. A perfect day-to-night dress and one that will definitely make a statement.

This summer, I’ll be in Portugal

I’ll be at home in Estoril in Cascais, and then Comporta for about 10 days. And possibly South of France or Corsica for a few more days. Barefoot-chic style – always.

For me, a perfect summer day

Is by the sea, lying on the sand with a good book, or at a beachside restaurant with your feet in the water, eating ‘Ameijoas a bulhao pato’ (clams with white wine, garlic and coriander sauce), grilled fish, and drinking a “stupidly cold” ‘Lambreta’ beer – a very Portuguese expression.

The pieces I always take on holiday are

My Borgo de Nor dresses of course! Marysia bikinis, denim shorts, a straw hat, Ancient Greek Sandals and Castañer wedge espadrilles.

In terms of our styles

Carmen is definitely cooler and trendier (laughs). I’m more classic and during the day tend to go for comfortable clothes and trainers, as I’m always running around between work, meetings and kid drop-offs and pick-ups. At night I like to let my hair down, put on heels and go for a sexier, more ‘glam’ look.

I always manage to turn negative experiences

Into positive learnings. Better an ‘oops’ than a ‘what if’.


We’re so excited about Spring 19

It’s a true expression of our brand. The colours and designs evoke an uplifting feeling of celebration, summer and good energy. We hope our dresses make the wearer feel gorgeous and happy.

Designing a new collection starts with an emotion

Then the collection starts to unravel through research of fabrics and inspirational images of art, photography and fashion, which inspire our prints.

Our Venus Shell print was inspired by Botticelli’s ‘Birth of Venus’

As well as surrealist artist Doris Lindo Lewis’ painting ‘Mamscape’ and the beauty and symbolism of shells. This is one of my favourite prints this season. It’s complicated, painterly and, to me, has so much emotion to it.

I have too many favourite pieces

But I do love the Isabeau one-shoulder Hibiscus-print dress. I’m planning on wearing it to my friend’s wedding in Serbia in May.

Surprisingly, I’m a tomboy at heart

I love sports, from American football – I can actually throw a good spiral – to tennis. At one point in my youth, I dreamt (albeit briefly!) of becoming a professional tennis player.

I’ll spend my summer in Borgonato

It’s a small town in Franciacorta, in Italy. It’s about an hour away from Milan and is an idyllic countryside setting surrounded by rolling hills, vineyards and beautiful lakes. It’s my husband’s hometown and I find a lot of peace there.

My holiday wardrobe is

A plethora of Borgo de Nor dresses, Emme Parsons day-to-night sandals and summer jewellery – I love big earrings and bold necklaces. Swimwear, of course, and rose oil to keep my skin moisturised after a day in the sun.

A perfect summer day is

Sunshine, outdoor sports and delicious food and wine surrounded by friends and family.

Photography: Jessica Mahaffey
Stylist: Kendal Boyle
Hair & Make-up: Claire De Graft


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