Fashion Designer Of The Week: Introducing The Talented Sejin Park

Sejinist has been a fashion art brand with artistic beauty + humor + color beauty since 2019. Aiming at Korean street fashion, they continue to unravel the stories of Sejinists. It expresses graphic motifs from Korean culture, centering on the five colors, and proposes a new style that modernizes hanbok’s silhouettes and details. Sejinist’s goal is to create a new Koreanism fashion by creating a trendy look by loving ours by combining traditional and modern culture.

Sassy & Co magazine recently caught up with Sejin Park to discuss her journey in the fashion industry, and here’s what went down:

How did you get into the fashion industry?

From an early age, I dreamed of becoming a fashion designer and majoring in art, and entering the university’s fashion design department after going through art high school. Contrary to what I thought, the major classes I took after entering university were less interesting than I thought. I was skeptical about studying fashion, so I did everything I wanted to do while taking a two-year break from school. In the process, I found an identity for what I wanted and completed an exchange course at ENSAD in Paris to open up a broader perspective. I had an excellent opportunity and once exhibited my work at the Musée d’Orsay. It was a work using hanbok, the traditional clothing of Korea, and many people did not know much about Korea. So after the semester, I returned to Korea and prepared for my brand launch.

What do you like most about being a designer?

I think of clothes as containers for messages. Every time I create a new piece of art, I feel very happy that someone understands the meaning and intent of the piece.

Downside to being a fashion designer?

In Korea, it is a difficult job to say, ‘If a designer brand survives in the fashion industry for only three years, it will be successful.’ Since there are so many clothes and brands, you must express your unique characteristics well to survive in them.

There are many times when I have to do everything on my own due to a lack of funds. Sometimes, only a small fraction of the effort is shown to people. It’s very difficult mentally and physically, but that’s what makes me grow and become a strong person.

What has been the most memorable experience of being in the fashion industry so far?

I always liked to play with people outside, but now I prefer to create new works in the studio. The fashion industry has changed my personality.

Who have been the most interesting people you’ve met so far?

My current boyfriend has the opposite personality to me.

He has no greed and is like the sea; there have been times when I looked at him as a research subject. We continue to learn much from him and become more like each other.

What has been the most valuable lesson you’ve learned while in the fashion industry. This can be about the industry or about yourself.

Don’t follow the trend; let me make the trend.

If I pursue other things, mine disappears. Let’s live a life that challenges new things.

Is your family supportive of you being a fashion designer?

I started with many concerns and did not ask anyone for help or express my difficulties to show that I could do it myself. There were times when I didn’t get along well with my parents, who couldn’t express myself well, but they always supported and believed in me in everything I did. These days, he sometimes jokes that he is investing in me, so he tells me to pay it back with a building.

If you could go back in a time machine to when you were just starting, what would you do differently?

At first, I was under pressure to do better when it came to presenting my brand to people. If I could go back to that time, I would want to reduce my weight and express myself more as I am.

What is the best advice you have ever been given?

To do what you want to do.

What are your future plans? Inside your career or out of it.

My goal is to become a designer that encompasses various fields. We plan to open a fusion cafe and showroom that contains Korean traditions so that many people can enjoy it. The goal is to create a place to enjoy various things and exhibitions.

FOMA 2022: Check Out All The Glitz And Glamour At The Powerhouse Museum

FOMA 2022 was an event not to miss. Thirty-six cultures were represented, seven exhibitions, eight ambassadors, four foreign government collaborations, six initiatives, two business growth stories, and 41 faces of FOMA.

Set in the Powerhouse Museum – it was a celebration where a live runway show and a fashion experience took place.

Amongst flashing lights, media coverage, and music – several designers and artists participated at FOMA 2022, such as BULUUY MIRRII By Colleen Tighe Johnson, Karis Zanetta The Label By Karis Zanetta Cheng, Fiji Consulate General & Trade Commission (Australia and New Zealand), The Bowerbirds by Sally Jackson, My Paloma by Founder Eliana Gamboa-Chapman, Lena Kasparian The Label by Lena Kasparian, Tatyana Anderson in Collaboration with Wendy Scully Millinery and Vivian Chan Shaw The Label. It was a great night filled with world-class fashion and entertainment.

Check out some of the photos from the event below, courtesy of Victor Hawk.

AACTA Awards 2022: Check Out All The Glitz And Glamour On The Red Carpet

The red carpet was rolled out in Sydney’s Hordern Pavilion 2 days ago as the Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts (AACTA) Awards held its official ceremony for 2022. The cream of the crop in the Australian Entertainment industry attended Australia’s night of nights, as the who’s who of show business gathered to celebrate the best in TV and cinema.

If you want to see all the glitz and glam at the 2022 AACTA Awards then scroll down below.

 

In Pictures: All The Glitz And Glam Of The Australian Golden Sash Awards 2022

The 2022 AGSA (Australian Golden Sash Awards) was recently held on Saturday at Sir Stamford in Mascot. The cream of the crop in the beauty pageant world attended the high-profile industry event in their beautiful sashes and glittery crowns. If you want to see all the glitz and glam at the 2022 Australian Golden Sash Awards, then scroll down below. The photos are courtesy of George Azmy:

Meet The Entrepreneur Behind The Cover Of The November 2022 Issue Of Sassy & Co: Stella Bella

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A serial entrepreneur, Stella Bella is currently a managing partner of Rice Remedy Group. She has built a career taking startups to multimillion-dollar success stories as a former director and the first female lead of SoGal Sydney. This venture firm is one of the largest global platforms for diverse entrepreneurs and investors. She was also a trained radiographer in Sydney until she decided to quit and buy a one-way ticket to Thailand. After some much-needed deep soul searching, she eventually decided to establish a factory that manufactures natural skin care and herbal supplements. Fast forward to today, and she has grown the business, eventually selling it for a 7-figure sum.

Stella wears many hats as an entrepreneur. She was a brand ambassador for women’s activewear and workout clothes retailer Lorna Jane. She has hosted TV shows for Tencent (the largest tech company in Asia and owner of WeChat), founded the Thailand Farmers Market, worked with Celebrity Chef Mathew Kenny consulting about Thailand Resorts, and her marketing initiatives have led to news video coverage from CNN and BBC resulting in millions of views.

Stella is currently referred to as ‘Stella Rice Girl’ – a managing partner of the Rice Remedy Group, where she manages its day-to-day operations. She’s currently pitching for a fund with Country Road. When she’s not working, she is out in nature, trekking the mountains, kayaking the oceans, getting stretchy on a yoga mat, or cooking in the kitchen.

Sassy & Co magazine recently caught up with Stella to discuss her journey in the fashion industry, and here’s what went down:

What are you currently doing to maintain/grow your business?

Word-of-mouth referral. People talk. Getting new business via referrals is easily the most profitable strategy for new business, as consumers referred by a friend are four times more likely to buy. My latest venture Rice Remedy Co. offers a monthly skincare and personal subscription. I only make 1000 kits per country per month. Have you ever purchased something just because your friend told you that you should? I know I have! So, ensuring I do everything possible to encourage my clients to recommend my product to others is vital to the growth of my business. So I am focused on top-end quality service and products that people can rave and talk about. Thus leveraging my current client base to drive referrals and grow this venture.

What social media platforms do you usually use to increase your brand’s awareness?

Facebook and Instagram were the first two social media platforms I grew up with and am familiar with. I used to joke that I stopped at one static Instagram post. However, I have to catch up with the times and am currently learning TikTok and reels.

What is your experience with paid advertising, like PPC or sponsored content campaigns? Does it work?

I made some expensive mistakes and learned some costly lessons. It can give you immediate visibility; you can target your specific market, track and have data sets to understand and know what is working and not working. Traditionally you might not, for example, retail on a brick-and-mortar; you would have these data sets. In my experience, paid advertising like PPC or sponsor campaigns allow me to test the marketing message and gives me data to make informed decisions about what is working and not working. It also allows me to set a tight budget and ad spend, which is helpful. So does it work? It depends on the KPI and your goal for doing it. You have to know your KPI and performance metrics. Marketing and sales are two different things. Marketing is about building awareness, and sales turn that viewership into profits by converting potential customers into actual customers. So you have to work out the return on the investment.

What form of marketing has worked well for your business throughout the years? Word of mouth.

What is the toughest decision you had to make in the last few months?

Culling my contacts and circle, setting boundaries, and saying no to things and people not aligned with my value vector. Tough when I am a nice YES girl at heart.

What money mistakes have you made along the way that others can learn from (or something you’d do differently)?

Not learning financial 101, basic profit/loss statements, and balance sheets, and investing time in learning it and being the expert at it, reviewing it monthly and quarterly and knowing where there is a hole in the pocket, and coming back to the numbers. Money is energy and is like a tree. You need to understand your business financially for the tree to be healthy and reap the fruit; you need to know what it needs to grow, what nutrients, and when to water it. That’s how I see the money. Understand the nature of your business and what is required to make it grow into a healthy money tree for you.

What new business would you love to start?

I love cooking. It is like my therapy, so rice remedy co. For rice lovers, a coffee/florist/ healthy Thai street food.

If you could go back in a time machine to the time when you were just getting started, what would you do differently?

Listen to my gut and not let the noise of others distract me from my inner voice.

What is the best advice you have ever been given?

When all the money is taken from you, real wealth is what you have left.

What advice would you give to a newbie Entrepreneur setting up their first business?

Getting it done is better than perfect. If you’re not embarrassed by the first launch, you have launched too late. Ditch perfect! Do and learn; practice makes perfect.

Photo Credit: Studio 49

Must-See Event Of The Week: Cover ModelQuest 2022

What: Cover ModelQuest is one of the most prestigious modelling competitions in the land down under to date. It’s the quest to discover Australia’s most promising models where contestants compete in their own choice of beach wear, theme costume, and after-five fashion. There are no height or size restrictions. The top 3 models selected during the finals will be shot exclusively for the next issue of StarCentral Magazine, with the male and female winners becoming the cover of the next issue.

Where: Stamford Plaza Sydney Airport Hotel (241 O’Riordan St, Mascot NSW 2020)

When: November 12, 2022

Tickets via this link: Cover ModelQuest 2022

In Photos: Horus by Faten At The 2022 Global Elite Fashion Festival

Faten Lawn was initially born in Egypt. She was born to a very humble father from a small country town who was a Chef and a mother who was a seamstress; she started working from the age of fourteen to help support her mother, father, and six other siblings. She has a brother who is seven years older than her. They moved to Australia to start a new promising life when she was just five, and she feels very blessed to have been brought up and loved by two very humble parents. Her father taught her to embrace her individuality and encouraged her decisions, especially how she dressed and her personal style. She was lucky to have two talented parents to inspire her, which got her to where she is today as the main designer behind The Cleopatra Collection by Horus.

Faten is currently 45 years old and has three amazing sons whom she’s very proud of – she encourages her sons to explore their own individuality and style. Her purpose in being a part of the fashion industry is to inspire others to think outside the box, embrace their individuality and recognise and embrace their own individual style. To explore different patterns, styles, materials, colours, and textures. Her designs are daring, and that really reflects her personality – she aims to give everyone the confidence to be daring and get comfortable with themselves. She also wants to highlight the talent of people with special needs and disabilities by giving them a platform in the fashion world.

Check out her fabulous collection at the 2022 Global Elite Fashion Festival courtesy of Dave Choo:

Virtual Fashion Try-On Wins Grosvenor Social Shopping Experience Challenge

Virtual clothing try-on technology, Zyler, has announced their success after applying for the Grosvenor Social Shopping Experience Challenge. International retail development and investment company, Grosvenor, launched a search for new technologies that champion innovation and build a social customer experience. A major aim of the challenge was to drive retail recovery in a post-pandemic world where bricks and mortar stores saw footfall slump. Zyler’s try-on solution impressed the judges and the companies will launch the technology with Grosvenor’s retail tenants.

Zyler’s patented technology brings immersive virtual try-on to fashion brands. The product allows customers to see themselves in any outfit with a head and shoulders photo and basic measurements. For retailers, the try-on experience can be embedded into a website or existing app with only a small snippet of code needed.

Zyler’s CEO Alexander Berend expressed excitement at the win. “We’re thrilled to be working with Grosvenor and their retailers. Zyler is perfect as a sales tool for stylists, allowing shoppers to find the best items for them”.

In terms of the future for Zyler, upcoming in-store trials with well-known luxury retail brands are on the horizon, bringing virtual try-on technology into the mainstream retail space.

This article was sourced from a media release sent by Maria Wainwright @ Zyler

Fashion Designer Of The Week: Introducing The Talented Marija Petraityte

Marija Petraityte was born and raised in Lithuania. For the past few years, she has been gaining her craftsmanship expertise in fashion. She has earned a sustainable fashion design AP degree from Copenhagen Design and Technology School, Denmark, and a Fashion Design BA from Vilnius Academy of Arts, Lithuania. In fashion, she enjoys exploring garment construction, forms, and textures. She mainly focuses on pattern making, experimenting, constructing prototypes, and sewing. Usually, she sees clothing as wearable sculptures – she uses garment cut lines to create natural visual fluidity. Her main inspirations come from her self-analyzation and nature forms, and she aims to create wearable but eye-catching clothing.

Sassy & Co magazine recently caught up with Marija to discuss her journey in the fashion industry, and here’s what went down:

How did you get into the fashion industry?

Since childhood, I have been interested in various creative hobbies such as drawing, embroidery, singing, and writing mini-stories or songs. Creativity made me happy; I knew I wanted to be in the arts field as a kid. When I got into art school as a teenager, I was sure I wanted to be in fashion because I saw fashion as a very versatile area. It could be created for different approaches – from ready-to-wear clothing to fashion shows/ theater or be included with other performing arts. I saw that it was my way in life.

What do you like most about being a designer?

This profession is adaptable to many subjects; in general, a designer is a creator, and this gives so much joy in daily life.

Downside to being a fashion designer?

I see that the downside is that the fashion design field is very much affected by fast fashion companies, and people don’t cherish garments anymore. In this case, people forgot the value of clothing, quality, and individuality. The whole fashion span is swift, so emerging designers usually overwork themselves.

What has been the most memorable experience of being in the fashion industry so far?

My graduation collection DISTANCE FROM A POINT production is the most memorable experience for now. As a recently graduated designer, I still breathe art school memories and experiences.

Who have been the most interesting people you’ve met so far?

Everyone in the fashion field is fascinating in their own way. Usually, in this field, people are very dreamy and not afraid to tell their stories or create their visions – and these types of people are the most interesting.

What has been the most valuable lesson you’ve learned while in the fashion industry. This can be about the industry or about yourself.

To be brave and risky sometimes, and trust in your decisions. Bravery in fashion is essential, even though I am still learning to be brave. I believe that it is necessary to have a constant conversation within yourself about what are your strong sides and what are your weaknesses. I see self-reflection and analysis as a key to becoming a successful designer.

Is your family supportive of you being a fashion designer?

Luckily, yes. My family is supportive of my decision to become a fashion designer.

If you could go back in a time machine to when you were just starting, what would you do differently?

I would change nothing. Maybe I would’ve started sewing and learned to construct garments sooner. But in general, I believe it is not necessary to turn back; it is better to focus on the future.

What is the best advice you have ever been given?

Once, I heard a sentence, ‘Forgive everything to others that you can forgive to yourself – it is not really fashion-related advice, but life is like a web – everything is connected.

But if you focus on fashion, I think it is essential not to stand in your own way and don’t be afraid to be wrong.

What are your future plans? Inside your career or out of it.

As a recent fashion graduate, I imagine creating many exciting pieces. I aim to find a way to harmonize fashion business and creativity to build interesting and fresh wearable avant-garde fashion labels in Europe.

DISTANCE FROM A POINT

My primary inspiration behind this collection is myself. In the fashion world, there is so much inspiration around us, so I wanted in this collection to listen to my voice and figure out my creative features. To do that, I restricted myself to only analyze and use my creative work as inspiration between 2018-2022. I’ve created my own tool/method for self-analysis of creative work. In short, I gather all my primary information, such as sketches, photos of garments, etc., then I analyse this information – search for creative frequency and define the design features. The research shows that designs are dominated by the interaction of flexible lines and shapes, the garment is seen as a living object, and transformations are used, such as details of the garment which can be removed or modified. Keywords: organics, structure, transformation. These features reflect in a collection DISTANCE FROM A POINT. The whole study is combined with symbols – spiral, tunnel, and vortex shapes. They represent self-exploring paths, evolution and growth of the spirit. Experiments are carried out with these forms in the creative process, the results of which are integrated directly into the constructions and cuts of the garments.

Meet The Global Man Behind The Cover Of The September 2022 Issue Of Sassy & Co: Jojo Almazora Sebastian

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Jojo Almazora Sebastian is a Filipino-American from Kapolei, Hawaii, based in Sydney, Australia – he’s a devoted and compassionate frontliner and nurse who works in the Operating Theatre at a busy Metropolitan Hospital in Sydney. However, on weekends, this orthopaedic nursing unit manager transforms into a charming and dashing tuxedo-attired fashionista, singer-entertainer, and master of ceremonies.

Jojo has been an awardee in Sydney’s Best Dressed for the last two years due to his excellent dressing sense and confident personality. For 2021, Sydney Best Dressed Organisation has awarded him the Top Male Fashion Icon of the Year. This landed him an award for the Inaugural Ceremony of World’s Best Dressed. He was nominated for Manila’s Best Dressed for 2020-2021 to represent Australia in the prestigious Annual Event in 2022 and was awarded at the 2021 Australian Modelling and Fashion Awards. He was also named as an ambassador for Sassy and Company Clothing in 2020-2021, which endeavours to teach everyone in the community fashion sustainability and to breathe new life into old clothes through recycling and repurposing.

Jojo been quite busy in the Catwalk for the past 2 years – he participated in the runway at the Sydney’s Best Dress 2020, Australian Multicultural Fashion Festival 2021, Sassy and Co Fashion Runway 2021, Australian Modelling and Fashion Festival and Awards 2021, Australian Fashion Preview 2021 and 2022, This Is Me Fashion Show 2021 and 2022 and Miss Earth Australia Fashion Show 2020 and 2021 amongst other. Jojo recently walked for Trinity Dawson – a Sydney Designer, in the New York Fashion Week last February 2022, LAKME Fashion Show in June 2022, and the Australian MultiCultural Fashion Exhibition in August 2022. He has been invited back to grace NYFC in September 2022. The Australian Multicultural Fashion Exhibition 2022 is a concept that Mr. Rox Molavin – the CEO of RGEM Promotion and Jojo, came up with, which aims to promote social awareness and cohesion in the multicultural community through fashion.

Sassy & Co magazine recently caught up with Jojo to discuss his journey in the fashion industry, and here’s what went down:

Where do you usually shop? Are there any hidden gems when it comes to snapping up some awesome designer clothes?

There are three types of places where I shop.

1. Op shop – This is my favourite place to shop. This is where I can find hidden gems such as shoes, tops, jeans, and jewelry.
2. New and Local Designers Shops – I love supporting new designers and wearing their creations in various events I attend and host. I also love collaborating with them.
3. Shopping Centers – For me, there is still a great deal of experience you can gain by going to a shop at a centre or mall. The workers who have vast experience in fashion could undoubtedly make a massive difference between buying the correct piece that suits you perfectly.

What are your top tips when it comes to fashion for the cooler months?

When it comes to fashion during cooler or winter months, here are my tips.

1. Layers are a must, so don’t ditch your trendy jackets for heavy-duty coats until it’s absolutely necessary; just buy them a size up so you can fit a sweater and down vest underneath or just simply accessorize with scarves or hats.
2. Winter Fashion and Style are not complete without great shoes. May it be boots or leather shoes.
3. Experiment with hats and trendy scarves.

However, never lose your individuality and uniqueness.

Where do you look for creative inspiration?

As a young man, I always find ways to become creative. My parents were my first creative inspiration, especially my mother, Josephine Almazora Sebastian – who is a very creative person.

Although, creativity came easy to me because I love to sing, dance, act, paint, host, fashion, and everything in between. At a young age, I always raised my hands whenever there was a chance to do anything that allowed me to flex my creative muscles, especially in fashion. Creative inspiration can come from and be seen everywhere, so my inspiration comes from all different aspects of my life, including fashion.

Is it hard to stay fashionable?

Honestly, NO it is not hard to stay fashionable, although it can be challenging at times. However, staying true to your fashion, passion, and yourself should not pose any problem. Another thing is to keep self-reinvention a part of your routine when keeping in fashion.

How do you walk the line between being unique and having commercial appeal?

There is a very thin line between keeping your uniqueness and still having that commercial appeal. Personally, I always go for what I would like first before thinking about its commercial appeal because, at the end of the day, my luxury, comfort, and style are at stake. For me, commercial appeal and viability become secondary. When I walk out with an out-of-the-box piece of clothing, I just give it my own unique flare of confidence and attitude, thus, providing it public appeal. So far, that has not failed me.

Are there any key trends you’ve seen for this year?

For 2022, I find that bright colours and comfort are going back in trend. So many designers are going back to basics, which are great for commercial and public consumers.

What do you think about the state of fashion today?

In general, I believe fashion is in an excellent state today. But there is definitely a lot of debate regarding the state of fashion. And I believe that actually what makes it great. So many new designers are coming out with new ideas of what fashion should be. Well-known designers are making their creations more affordable for the public to gain access to. I guess we can consider this the new golden state of fashion, as everyone can access fashion in the manner they would love.

What are the clothes we can rid our wardrobes of that are considered very ‘last season’?

As we all know, as we enter the new age of fashion, we are also dealing with fashion waste which is relatively related to one another. Personally, I do not believe getting rid of wardrobes just because it was considered last season. One of my advocacies is to endeavour to teach the community about fashion sustainability and to once more breathe new life into old clothes through recycling and repurposing. Only when I find that I could not do anything else with a piece of clothing, I get rid of it by sending it off to my relatives in the Philippines. NO WASTE HERE.

What fashion advice would you give an emerging fashionista?

I would advise them to keep their uniqueness and passion together whilst exploring and discovering their true selves in terms of their fashion.

Photos By: Jay Gaerlan / HMUA: Marilou Bautista / SkinCare: Chocolate Day Spa / Model: Jojo Almazora Sebastian