Emerging Fashion Designer Of The Week: Introducing The Talented Angelo Raffaele Masciello

Angelo Raffaele Masciello is a 24-year-old fashion designer who was born on the 2nd of September 1997 in Foggia-Italy. Over the past few years, the relationship with two very important women, who both shared a passion for embroidery and knitwear, marked his future choices, wishing to become a stylist. Thanks to that, he started drawing clothes when he was 16, and he has never stopped since then. He enrolled at the Academy of Fine Arts in Foggia, earning a three-year degree in “Fashion and Costume,” understanding how much this path did not represent just a simple job to him. It gave him the chance to identify himself in a real lifestyle, acquiring a deeper knowledge of colours, tailoring techniques, and types of fabrics by manipulating them to create new shapes. He moved to Rome to start a new path and chase his dream, with new challenges, in the “Haute Couture Master” at the Accademia Costume & Moda, in 2019. Deadlines set for each project and the countless exams have helped him constantly plan and reach every goal with the utmost seriousness, humility, and desire to improve himself.

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

How did you get into the fashion industry?

Everything started one summer, in 2016, when I started drawing dozens of illustrations per day. I remember that many of my friends went out while I stayed at home to draw traveling on my mind.
They were my first sketches. I immediately understood what my passion was.

So I decided to enroll at the Academy of Fine Arts in Foggia, my hometown, starting to discover the beauties about fashion arts, to discover the love for fabrics, and my own desire to always create something new. In those years, I got very close to tailoring maker; I loved sewing all garments for the graduation by myself, experimenting with new shapes on the mannequin, and choosing innovative and functional fabrics.

In 2019, after my bachelor’s degree, I moved to Rome to complete my studies. I enrolled in the Master Alta Moda at the Accademia Costume & Moda.

It was a very important career path; I grew up as a person and as a designer, learning to work in a team and complete all the goals. I’ve improved the development of creative research for the collections by making them extremely personal. It has been a strong path, which despite the Covid blockade, has contributed to my professional growth.

What do you like most about being a designer?

Being able to convey a message, being able to say what I think without words, but using art, colors, shapes, fabrics that convey lightness or melancholy as well.

I think it’s very important to feel free because one’s freedom makes others free too.

Nowadays, the designer has a fundamental role within society, young people identify with a brand or in a fashion icon, and this is what I love: having a continuous exchange of needs with the people you meet.

I want to feel part of this society because I know they can give a lot to me and, at the same time, I can leave a message for them too.

Downside to being a fashion designer?

You need to have a strong personality and have clear ideas about what you want to convey; otherwise, there’s the risk of no longer being fundamental for society. It’s important always to have new ideas, be open-minded as much as possible to new needs, and always question oneself. Otherwise, it could become difficult.

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

The catwalk, of course. A designer works to his creations day and night, but what always pushes me to give my best is to see my clothes worn when they come to life.

On the catwalk, everything comes alive, from the fabrics to the colors that light up; at that moment, I relive the whole journey in a few seconds. The adrenaline of the last moment combined with the feelings of models and the tears of thanks knowing that I’ve left something of mine to those who have looked at my collection. I remember perfectly after the MittelModa Fashion contest, in September, and the last Fashion Graduate Italia the smiles and hugs with the whole team, the congratulations from Rosemary Ferrari backstage. They are unforgettable moments.

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

I take this opportunity to thank all the people who work in the Academy because they have helped me in this fundamental path of my life. All professionals who have dedicated their time to pass on their experiences and their passion to all of us.

It was very important to exchange and grow with people who love this job because they have enriched me a lot, have been a push to believe in what I was doing, and always pushed me further. A fundamental person was Santo Costanto, to whom I say thank you. He was always present for everyone; working with him during the master and having him as a teacher was also important on a human level.

In this job, you have to surround yourself with positive and proactive people; only in this way could I overcome my limits.
What has been the most valuable lesson you’ve learned while in the fashion industry. This can be about the industry or about yourself.

The humility of always wanting to learn, constantly questioning myself, and never being satisfied. These characteristics have always helped me move forward while respecting the work of others as much as possible.

The awareness of learning has led me always to have new goals every day.

I always try to be positive by finding an issue solution because the company has deadlines, and there’s no time to put yourself first.

In my opinion, the most wrong thing a designer can commit is to think that he has already reached the finish line.

Resuming your third question: in my opinion, that’s a big downside.

Is your family supportive of you being a fashion designer?

Absolutely yes!

They were the first to believe in me; they listened to and welcomed my passion and dreams.

If I got here today, it’s above all thanks to them.

It was a journey that we shared together and that they will surely continue to share with me. I think they also received all my feelings and perceived the need to express myself with my work.

Today the fashion world belongs to them too.

I will always be grateful to them.

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

Honestly not, I wouldn’t change anything about my path.

I made choices that made me grow as a person, designer, and with relationships with others.

You never know if that choice is right or wrong, but I’ve been able to improve some things from mistakes, and I have moved on.

I live the choices as a positive opportunity; I always try to avoid the negative sides because maybe what doesn’t arrive today will arrive tomorrow. You have to persevere and believe in what you do, be determined.

Every choice I made was determined by a historical moment, and I’m so glad about all the choices I have made to date.

Now I’m thinking about the next one.

(Photo by Daniele Venturelli )

What is the best advice you have ever been given?

The secret lies in constant work… Work a lot!

You have to work hard, make many sacrifices, be willing not to sleep for whole nights to understand where to improve yourself.

In recent years I have made many sacrifices; there have been very demanding weeks, then the work always pays off.

My advice for those growing this passion is to be determined and believe in themselves. The right attitude is to be curious, never get tired of knowing, never be superficial, and be dynamic.

To love this job is the most important thing, dedicating as long as possible to achieve excellent results.

To those starting, I say to always believe in it and never forget why you have chosen this job. It will be your strength.

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

My first goal is to start working for a fashion brand, to be able to give my knowledge to make something beautiful together.

Being complicit in a creation, sharing feelings with the brand, and making my little experiences available while growing with the company and the team.

In a few years, I hope to have the opportunity to open my own fashion line, womenswear, and men RTW, to be able to get involved again.

A secret dream is to enter a haute cuisine school: I’m cultivating this interest because it’s a source full of inspiration, relaxation, and well-being for myself.

(Photo by Daniele Venturelli )
(Photo by Daniele Venturelli )
(Photo by Daniele Venturelli )
(Photo by Daniele Venturelli )

Big Aussie Fashion Brands Urged To Sign On To International Accord To Stop Garment Worker Exploitation

Australian big fashion and clothing brands urged to sign on to international accord to stop garment worker exploitation.

The union representing workers in the garment industry is calling on five major Australian companies who manufacture clothing overseas to sign a new international accord to prevent worker exploitation in the industry.

The companies on the list own some of Australia’s biggest fashion brands, including Peter Alexander, Just Jeans, Dotti, Portmans and City Chic.

The former Bangladesh accord has now been renegotiated and extended to other countries. The new International Accord for Health and Safety in the Textile and Garment sector has been signed by all but four Australian companies who had previously signed the Bangladesh accord.

Those companies are:

·      Design Works

·      Licensing Essentials Pty Ltd

·      Specialty Fashion Group

·      The Just Group

Textiles, Clothing and Footwear National Secretary of the CFMEU Manufacturing Division, Jenny Kruschel, said there were major compliance and safety issues in the garment manufacturing industry globally.

“No company or brand should make profits at the expense of workers,” Jenny Kruschel said.

“The accord ensures safe workplaces, and helps prevent exploitation of some of the world’s most vulnerable people.

“These companies have done the right thing in the past and signed the previous accord that was put in place after the Rana Plaza tragedy in Bangladesh.

“We call on them to now sign on to the new code, which will protect more workers in more countries, as well as their own brands.”

Photo by Ron Lach from Pexels

This article was sourced from a media release sent by Medianet

Emerging Fashion Designer Of The Week: Introducing The Talented XZOUIX

XZOUIX was born behind the Iron Curtain in 1986, in a country of Czechoslovakia deformed by normalization and visually molded by functionalism. From an early age, she observed her surroundings from a safe distance, curiously watching the world with wonder until she decided to shape it. Her love for nature and design has led her to become a fashion designer specializing in zero-waste design. XZOUIX is not only a person; it’s also a product resulting from the work of XZOUIX. It’s a garment or an object in which a zero-waste design principle merges with a juxtaposition of asymmetry and symmetry, deconstruction, and minimalism. It’s a human, and it’s a thing, and it’s a mood. 

It’s a long coat or a dress that flows around your body in a certain way and a mood that comes with it. It is just as particular as elegance of darkness, aesthetics of brutalism and transparence of functionalism. Watch it move. Let the garment whisper and flow. And follow along.

XZOUIX resides in private collections and wardrobes across the world. It has been shown in a number of national and international events, fashion shows, competitions, and exhibitions like Designblok in Prague, Czech Republic; Aspen AIDS benefit fashion show in Telluride, Colorado and at the international Arts of Fashion Symposium in San Francisco, California.

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

How did you get into the fashion industry? 

I studied fashion design at the School of Applied Arts in Ruzomberok. They taught me everything about the garment-making process, from r&d through garment construction to perfectly tailored custom garments. Later on, I continued my studies at the Academy of Fine Arts and Design in Bratislava, where I got my Master of Arts degree. 

What do you like most about being a designer? 

The creative freedom.

Downside to being a fashion designer? 

My brain is always in work mode. XZOUIX is a one-woman operation, which means I do everything from design and product development to sewing and post-production, including photography, website, and even marketing by myself, so going to sleep or taking a weekend off is often unthinkable. I am still learning to master the work/life balance and take a pause when I need it because I like what I do, and I always get inspired. My teachers used to say that my mind is a river. 

The inspiration just never stops coming.

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

Having the opportunity to travel around the world to show my fashion collections and seeing happy customers wearing my designs with confidence, beautifully matched with a smile on their faces.

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

People who love their work; the ones that are willing to pass the knowledge and share their creative drive. I love and admire that kind of energy because it makes sense and inspires me always to be moving forward.

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

No deadline is too tight. I learned always to take chances and never pass the opportunity to learn something new.

Is your family supportive of you being a fashion designer?

I can’t say they are supportive, but they are definitely patient. 

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

Nothing, really. However, I would tell myself to follow my instinct and learn to recognize which idea is worth investing in and when to quit and move on to a fresh start. With the constant flow of inspiration that I have, no sheet of paper stays blank for too long anyway.

What is the best advice you have ever been given?

Learn to say “no.”

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

I am slowly transitioning from avant-garde fashion to designing functional clothing for motorcyclists. The paths we take in our careers rarely go smooth and straight as planned, but with open eyes and an “always inspired” attitude, even an unexpected detour on the road to the imaginary top can become an adventure with the potential to change our perspective forever. And in my case, keeping my eyes and mind open led to changing my career’s destination from shiny fashion runways to well-weathered back roads discovered on two wheels. 

I used to tell myself I should keep a distance between my design work and my other passions. Now that I’ve outgrown my teenage ambitions of unbound creativity and came to understand that my personal life and my work are always going to blend into one, I decided that the motorcyclist in me should be given more space to express herself more freely. I allowed myself to start building a second brand that will cater to the community I feel I belong to. And what better way to spend more time among motorcycles and like-minded people than creating protective gear for motorcycle riders? 

I had already found true meaning in recycling fabrics and leather, so with this, I am allowing myself to truly put my effort into something bigger than the need to create. Caring about the motorcyclist’s safety and at the same time giving a second (or third) life to leather means so much more!

 A “good design” is well thought out and leaves no negative environmental trace when it’s done. That is why XZOUIX aims to follow a “zero waste” design path. And yes, I know that leather = murder. Just let me explain why leather at XZOUIX matters and, in fact, the purpose driving XZOUIX forward. Leather at XZOUIX is strictly salvaged leather. It is either manually recycled leather or leftover leather, donated to me as a gesture of support from people who know my work. Animals shouldn’t be “raised” only to serve the purpose of becoming pieces of mass-produced clothing, be it fashion garments or functional clothing such as motorcycle jackets, etc. 

Recycling materials like abandoned leather is an idea that goes beyond a creative need and design love; it is what gives a sense to what I do. Over the years, I worked with different materials and media, but only recycling fabrics, particularly leather, gave me a deeper sense of purpose. We all need a purpose, especially when it comes to work. If I learned something from the world we live in, caring about the world we live in should correspond with creating the world we live in. I believe that whenever I save at least a few animals or a piece of cow by lowering the demand for new material, I help create a better and more lively environment. This is my purpose and a trace I want to leave. 

Emerging Fashion Designer Of The Week: Introducing The Talented Mathilde Lhomme

Mathilde Lhomme is a small-town girl with big dreams.

After studying sewing and costume history, she left her suitcases in Paris and started working at the age of 19 for the Moulin Rouge workshop; this led her through the world of haute couture on the catwalks. Passionate about the world of haute couture and cabaret, she mixed these two forces to create an original, solid, and feminine fashion. For her, fashion is a real state of mind, art, and she’s convinced that a garment is so much more which can impact the person who wears it.

Sassy & Co Magazine recently caught up with Mathilde to discuss her journey in the fashion world, and here’s what went down:

How did you get into the fashion industry?

I always knew I wanted to do this job before I even figured out what it was. I was drawing all the clothes I saw on TV and in magazines. I was doing fashion shows with my barbies /dolls, and I was very invested in my looks at school and carefully chose each of my clothes.

After my degree, I entered this professional field as a « petite main » (hand sewing) to help with the extra work before Fashion week. I was then 20 years old when I first worked on the catwalks of Chanel, Givenchy, Jean Paul Gaultier, and many others.

What do you like most about being a designer?

This work brings together all my passions, drawing, fashion, and sewing. I like it most because it constantly develops my creativity, and even if the job remains the same, it’s an eternal restart, each time you have to reinvent yourself and create a new theme, new shape, new fabrics. I like to develop a new universe each time to learn more and more about this profession, to surpass myself.

Downside to being a fashion designer?

It is a ruthless profession. There is very little room for a lot of talent. I want to develop this elitist side and make fashion more accessible to everyone. We do not all have the same emphasis, and some people work a lifetime without ever having gratitude.

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

My best memory will forever be my very first fashion show as a designer. In less than two months, I had to draw and sew my own collection for the final of the national competition for young designers in Paris.

I lived in a tiny apartment; there was fabric everywhere! On the floor, in my kitchen, on my bed. I fell asleep while working and then continued when I woke up.

I was surrounded by all the people I loved, and I was doing everything I fought for the first time. It was one of the happiest days of my life. For the first time, I had chosen everything down to the smallest detail, the music, the models, the hairstyles; for a day, I lived in my biggest dream.

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

I haven’t really spoken to him, but I have been very inspired by the work of Jean Paul Gaultier from a very young age. I had the honor of working on one of his fashion shows. I was able to discover how this humble genius of great kindness spread love and happiness wherever he went. It is the fashion that I want to see and that inspires me. He proves to us that we can be successful by being a nice person.

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

Ten thousand hours of work to excel in a discipline takes us from novice status to expert. Since that day, I have never stopped, and I don’t count my hours anymore. And above all, that nothing is impossible with work and passion.

Is your family supportive of you being a fashion designer?

My family has been my biggest supporter! They have always encouraged me to make my dreams come true.

I told my parents that I wanted to be a stylist when I was 10; I think, since that day, they have done everything to help me. They took me shopping; I helped pick out the clothes for the whole family. My mother would print me fashion articles and stylist stories she found on the internet. They helped me find the studies that suited me and then helped me settle in Paris. And they’re always there to share my successes and help keep me hopeful. They always believed in me; that’s where my determination comes from.

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

If I could go back to that time and give myself some advice, I would tell myself to stop thinking too much and just go for it! And above all, believe in yourself.

What is the best advice you have ever been given?

The best advice anyone has given me is that no one will do things for me, no one will come and push me, no one will go and do my work. No one will come and give me the job of my dreams. It’s up to you to do everything, create your own opportunities, and get started. It’s up to you to prove that you deserve your place.

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

I have always dreamed of having my own brand, this is the next step for me. I’m working on it, and I can’t wait to offer my vision of fashion, develop my own identity by mixing fashion and show intended for those who want to be the main character of their lives, celebrating differences and boldness.

Queenslander Designer Kelly Woodcroft Debuts A Jewellery Collection Inspired By Queensland

Put the colours, corals, and canopies of Far North Queensland’s rainforest and reef into imagination, and add the character and chic of 90s grunge rock. The result is Brisbane designer Kelly Woodcroft’s debut jewellery collection – RAINFOREST REEF ROCK.

A design fusion of semi-precious stones and luxury metals, Kelly’s handcrafted first collection is a stunning homage to the wonders of nature juxtaposed to big city glamour. It is also a reflection of her own journey. The 39 year old designer and mother of two grew up in Cairns in Far North Queensland before moving to Brisbane; and the 90 grunge rock scene, well that was the soundtrack of her formative years.

Whether it’s spectacular summer storms, the fine layering of an orchid’s petals, the brilliant colours of tropical fish or a sold-out front row, RAINFOREST REEF ROCK is an enchanting window into Kelly’s world.

The collection has been created in a studio under her house and with up to nine hours spent on each piece, the process has been challenging with Covid curveballs, juggling a young family and road-blocks at every turn, however, she was determined, and now the stunning pieces of RAINFOREST REEF ROCK have made their entrance. Introducing:

  • Angel Fish– featuring Marquise Cabochon cut Mother of Pearl eye set in Gold above a faceted Triangle Pyrite in Sterling Silver.
  • Summer Storm – hand-drawn lightning bolt earrings crafted in Sterling Silver and encrusted with petite diamonds.
  • Orchid – handcrafted Sterling Silver flowers with Rose Quartz drop.
  • Starfish – asymmetrical star earrings in Sterling Silver or Gold.
  • Parrot Fish – faceted Blue Chalcedony and teardrop Yellow Chalcedony set in Sterling Silver.
  • Ulysses – Sterling Silver Butterfly.
  • Daintree Bloom –  Sterling Silver with Seed Pearls inlaid in Rose Gold.
  • Raindrop – Hematite and Blue Chalcedony handcrafted in Sterling Silver.
  • Bottlebrush – Pink Stone and Orange Carnelian handcrafted in Sterling Silver and Rose Gold.
  • Mermaid – faceted Pink Stone, Crystal Lemon Quartz and Rose Quartz drop handcrafted in Sterling Silver.
  • Treetop Canopy – stunning detailed handcrafted geometric design cut into Sterling Silver reflecting the view of a rainforest canopy from below or above.“Seeing this collection take form has been one of my most thrilling experiences yet, and being able to pay tribute to my two great influences in where I grew up, and the music I love, has taken it to a new level,” said Kelly.“The past 20 months with Covid challenges everywhere and so many stop signs in front of me, it made me even more determined to unveil this collection now – so earring lovers can know their pieces have been made with love, determination, and authenticity, to be worn their way and reflect their mood and personality. One day it’s a Summer Storm lightning bolt, the next, it’s an Angel Fish!”See the entire collection at kellywoodcroft.com.
  • This article was sourced from a media release sent by Medianet.

Meet The Model Behind The Cover Of The December 2021 Issue Of Sassy & Co Magazine: The Stunning Liudmyla Tkachenko

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Liudmyla Tkachenko is a fascinating and stunning Ukrainian- born model, influencer, and entrepreneur currently based in Los Angeles who is making a name for herself in the Entertainment industry.

Liudmyla, as a young girl, had a dream and passion for modeling. Lady luck smiled at her when a modeling agency in Ukraine approached her. “I was in the middle of grocery shopping when the agent told me that he saw potential in me as a model. I, therefore, decided to visit their office the next day, and that’s when I got signed up with my first mother agency,” she narrated.

However, in her quest to be an international model, Liudmyla ended up moving to China, where she had to contend with the language barrier and numerous culture shocks. With determination, she eventually prevailed on those challenges. She worked as a full-time model, appearing in several high-profile television commercials and magazines. All these were mainly aired in Thailand, Hong Kong, and a few other parts of Asia.

Not one to rest on her laurels, Liudmyla took her ambition up a notch when she moved to the United States. Language barriers and cultural differences bared their fangs at her, but, once again, she showed the tenacity in her by overcoming those. She has walked multiple times at New York Fashion Week and for high-profile designers such as Dan Liu, Terraza, and Oxford Fashion. She was also featured in several exquisite fashion magazines such as L’Officiel magazine, Marie Claire, MD Trends magazine, Imaginary magazine, and Marjen magazine. She further added a feather to her cap when she participated in numerous catalog shoots and went to get herself featured in Vogue, Elle, as well, as Harper’s Bazaar.

Satisfied with her stint in New York, Liudmyla moved to Los Angeles to pursue an acting career. So far, she’s done well for herself, appearing in several high-profile commercials and acting in a feature film called “The Nowhere Inn” which premiered at the Sundance film festival 2020.

Liudmyla’s focus and self-belief saw her overcome language and cultural differences on two separate occasions while shooting for the stars – a shot which she took with the perfect aim and precision. With her determination and sheer talent, Liudmyla will soon be a household name in both Hollywood and the Walkway.

Sassy & Co Magazine recently caught up with Liudmyla to discuss her journey in the fashion world, and here’s what went down:

Could you please tell our readers a brief background about yourself?

I’m a Ukrainian – American model and entrepreneur based in Los Angeles. I was born in a beautiful city west of Ukraine. I grew up in Ukraine and started my modeling career in Ukraine as well. I have experienced modeling in a lot of different countries around the world, including Asia, Europe, United States.

How did you become an international influencer? What’s it like to be an influencer?

I became an influencer through modeling. A lot of companies would want me to promote their brand. It’s an interesting industry, and I’m really enjoying it! I like to influence people for a positive mindset and a healthy lifestyle.

What has been your greatest triumph, to date?

Cover of Harpers Bazaar and Vogue publication! As well as Marie Claire, I consider as a great success! NYFW shows and TV commercials.

What has been your greatest lesson, and how have you used that lesson in your life?

Our time is the most valuable thing. And that you always need to stay true to yourself and make sure you choose the best life you can ever imagine! I use this lesson every day whenever I’m making any choices.

If you could travel back in time and alter one historical event, where would you go, and what would you attempt to change?

There’s nothing I would want to change from my past. I believe my mistakes are my greatest teachers and made me who I am.

What do you think you came into this life to learn, and what do you think you came here to teach?

I believe I come to this life to learn how to love and enjoy life to the fullest. I think I come here to spread positivity and love.

What projects are you working on right now?

I’m working on a yoga clothing line called Flexup. It’s an activewear brand built for empowering women. I’m also working on a new amazing magazine cover coming out soon!

What would you still like to attempt in your career despite everything you have accomplished?

Vogue cover, Cosmopolitan magazine cover, ELLE magazine cover and I want to walk at the Chanel runway show. I also want to build Flexup to become a super successful company.

What advice would you give to those hoping to follow in your footsteps?

Always believe in yourself. Work hard and stay focused. Maintain a positive mindset and enjoy the journey to the fullest!

Photo Credit: Antoine Verglas

Emerging Fashion Designer Of The Week: Introducing The Talented Chrystel Anne Clasicas

Chrystel Anne Clasicas is a Filipina designer born and raised in the U.A.E. She began her fashion journey after being inspired by her aunt, Felicidad Tuviera, who used to sew clothes for her and her sister. Ever since then, she has always had an interest in drawing dresses and making sock dresses for her Barbies. Chrystel emerged from the College of Fashion and Design, Dubai. Where she won a full scholarship through a radio competition in 2019. Her Grandmother wore her very first design for her uncle’s wedding.

She started her business after her college closed down during the pandemic by selling silk masks as she was tired of getting ‘maskne’.

She explores ways to visually represent her vision by drawing inspiration from architectural monuments and her cultural roots. Each piece she creates exudes elegance yet stays true to comfort and can be worn on a daily basis.

Sassy & Co Magazine recently caught up with Chrystel Anne to discuss her journey in the fashion world, and here’s what went down:

How did you get into the fashion industry?

It started in 2019 when a friend of mine asked me to create an engagement dress for her. I also joined many competitions while studying, which led me to create one of my most iconic pieces, the ‘Felicidad’ gown. I relied on collaborations and networking to help me get into the industry. Collaborating with Filipino photographer Ace Reyes and makeup artists Mau Piodena and Pearl Delgado for my first clothing collection really started it all for my brand and me. Dubai is a great place to connect with other creative individuals within the fashion industry, which helped open doors for me for other opportunities.

What do you like most about being a designer?

I enjoy the creative aspect of it and seeing the happiness on my clients’ faces! Finding inspiration and researching is difficult, but it’s really where all the magic happens. You see the outcome of the idea in the final design, and that’s the best feeling.

Downside to being a fashion designer?

It’s a career that not many people will take seriously till you make something out of yourself. This can be tough when you are starting your career, so having a good support system is very important.

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

I think being invited to join New York Fashion Week has been one of my most memorable experiences. It stood out the most to me because it was one of the most stressful events in my life. My luggage, which had all the clothes for my show, got lost in Germany and was only delivered to me the day before the show! But in the end, it was an overall great experience as I got to meet the best models, makeup artists, and the production team backstage. As an emerging designer, being given the opportunity to showcase in an event like that is a dream come true. It validates my dedication and all the work I have put into making myself a better designer.

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

I’m fairly new to the industry, so every person I meet is interesting to me.

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

The industry is very competitive. You can combat this by keeping up-to-date with trends and not lag behind in order to stand out. Brushing up on your skills as a designer is also equally important. Personally, I learned that the connections and relationships you make with people are very important as they are the gateway for you to navigate and network in the industry that can lead to more exciting opportunities.

Is your family supportive of you being a fashion designer?

NO. They weren’t really supportive of the idea at first and said I should just do it as a hobby. It took them some time to really get on board with the idea that I wanted to do something nontraditional. I did not let that change my goal of pursuing fashion. I would say my sister, Chyrille and boyfriend played a significant role in supporting me when I was about to give up on designing. They really pushed me to keep going and not give up.

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

I would remind myself to be more confident in my abilities and practice, practice, practice. It’s because I lacked the confidence to put myself out there. I wouldn’t have joined that competition to win that full scholarship which lead me to where I am now. But thankfully, with the support of my siblings and friends, I overcame that.

What is the best advice you have ever been given?

It’s okay to fail, so don’t beat yourself up about it. You live, and you learn.

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

I’ll just keep designing and putting myself out there in hopes of eventually having my own studio in different parts of the world. I also plan on hiring full-time tailors to help me bring my vision to life.

Emerging Fashion Designer Of The Week: Introducing The Talented Becki Ball

Becki Ball currently lives in Norfolk, Norwich, and since graduating from the Norwich University of the Arts last year, she launched her label BECCI. Her work is inspired by the contrast of ‘streetwear meets elegance .’ Her womenswear designs are heavily print-based, portraying a bold sense of confidence and empowerment. Femininity is key to her pieces, and this is highlighted with her sense of colour and silhouette. She has recently collaborated with fashion label SHEIN to create two collections, with her first curve collection launching in Winter.

Sassy & Co Magazine recently caught up with Becki to discuss her journey in the fashion world, and here’s what went down:

How did you get into the fashion industry?

I graduated last year from the Norwich University of the Arts, and since graduating in Fashion Design, I have been working on my brand BECCI. When growing up, I have always loved fashion, and during my time at Sixth Form before university, I studied textiles. I took part in local fashion shows for which I made my own clothing; I worked backstage at fashion shows and took on styling work experience when I could. During my gap year before going to university, I launched my brand, and from there, I started buying wholesale pieces. I really loved the marketing side to the brand and putting photoshoots together, collaborating with local creatives, and managing the social media side to things. When I started university to study Fashion Design, I realised that I wanted to design and make my own pieces to sell and be more sustainable- instead of buying general wholesale designs to sell to my customers.

What do you like most about being a designer?

I love how creative it is and that fashion is a form of communication and expression of how we feel, our personality, and who we are. The process of a simple 2D sketch becoming a final wearing garment is incredible; there is no other feeling quite like it, and that sense of accomplishment and achievement is so rewarding. I love styling my pieces for the shoots, learning new techniques, and meeting other creatives along the way.

Downside to being a fashion designer?

Probably the amount of time one has to put in to get ‘somewhere’. Fashion isn’t easy, and many people have a false conception that fashion is simple. Not many people see the hard work (and tears) behind creating a collection or project! The other downside to being a fashion designer is believing in myself- sometimes, self-doubt is the worst. There is no set path for becoming a designer – and I think that is what makes it difficult (but also great), as there is no one’ right’ way to become a fashion designer or easy path to follow.

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

My most memorable experience so far has been the SHEIN X 100k Challenge. This was so incredible! I made it through to the top 30 of the competition, where I got to create my 3 looks and put together a look book for this in the space of about 3 weeks. Sourcing fabric samples, getting my fabric printed, sourcing final fabrics, making the patterns for the designs, sampling the pieces, creating the final looks- and organising a photoshoot was extremely hard work! However, on the day of the shoot, seeing the looks on the models and having everything come together was phenomenal! The late nights, endless work, and stress had definitely paid off! Then, not only did that happen, but we got to be part of the SHEIN X 100k Challenge show series that was aired on the SHEIN app! I was also awarded the SHEIN Choice Award for my collection!

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

Probably my class members at university. The amount of talent and determination they have is amazing, and I love how different we all are! Everyone there had a totally unique design style and aesthetic, and for me, that was really inspiring. I loved hearing about their inspiration and what they were going to design next.

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

I think budgeting is really important, and the SHEIN X 100k Challenge Shoot was the first project and shoot I got to do with a budget. I loved being able to pay my team for their hard work, but I think next time, I would have liked to manage the budget better and more equally. However, this is something I will improve on in the future. The most valuable lesson I think is probably just believing in myself, this challenge made me realise that I can do this, and even with an extremely tight deadline, it is still possible!

Is your family supportive of you being a fashion designer?

Yes, they are; although they do not have any ‘fashion’ background, they always ask me about my projects (and sometimes are quite surprised at what I am working on!) My mum helped me prepare for the big SHEIN x 100k Challenge photoshoot late at night before the shoot, taping the bottom of the shoes for my models so that I could still return them!

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

I think this is a difficult question; I would love to have not had the pandemic happen if this was something I could have stopped, as I felt like I missed out on a lot of opportunities that I was looking forward to for my final year at uni. However, because of the pandemic, I believe some of the opportunities I have met online and worked with SHEIN happened because of this. So I probably would not change anything as everything happens for a reason.

What is the best advice you have ever been given?

I think being open-minded, always be open to learning. You might not do something perfectly the first time, but giving it a go and getting started is the only way you can progress forward.

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

I would like to launch more collections in collaboration with SHEIN and launch my own Ready To Wear collection. My overall goal is to have a successful fashion label I can live off, produce consistent collections, be part of runway shows, work with celebrities, and have my own team behind the brand! Outside of my career, I would love to move out soon and have my own fashion home studio.

This Mobile Game for Fashionistas Attracts 8 Million Players in 5 Months

An engaging social game for women “Pocket Styler” attracts 2M downloads in launch month alone, collaborates with designers to create trendy in-game content, and yet collaborate with designer brands as well.

Every week, nearly half a million new players join Pocket Styler – a new fashion game for mobile devices that focuses on dressing up the avatar for different occasions, where created looks are being rated by the community of users. The creators attribute the cause of the growing popularity of the game to its’ non-urgent nature, where a player can relax and simply enjoy the process, enabling the focus on creativity – over 147 million different outfit looks have already been created by the game users.

The action of Pocket Styler takes place in New York, one of the global fashion meccas. The player arrives at the Big Apple, taking a chance to make it big by attending various social events and exploring their dress code requirements. After carefully curating their look, the players evaluate other players’ styles and are appraised by them in turn, helping develop style and design sensibility, while exploring their sense of style virtually.

“Unlike most casual games, Pocket Styler takes it slow,” says Nordcurrent’s Game Designer Povilas Katkevičius. “Players are in no rush as they take their time to warm up their imagination, find a door to freedom, and express themselves freely. While the most competitive players can focus on quality and strive for perfection in each detail, others can explore current trends and find inspiration for their real-life wardrobe.”

With predecessors such as Cooking Fever (over 400 million downloads), Sniper Arena (70 million) and Murder in the Alps (20 million), Pocket Styler is Nordcurrent’s most recent release. “Our goal was to create an engaging social game for women,” claims Victoria Trofimova, the CEO of Nordcurrent. “As the audience of women playing mobile games is growing globally, we felt a need to respond to this tendency.”

When Pocket Styler launched in May, the game obtained 2 million users in the first month and increased four-fold in 5 months. As nearly half a million players join the style platform every week, its’ social media community also continues to grow exponentially.

The game is curated by fashion professionals and a team of experienced stylists, and will very soon open to collaborations with designer brands worldwide. Pocket Styler will enable their creations to appear in digital form, while the players will be able to dress their models in real-life designer clothing and accessories. Now, all the clothing is custom-made for the platform, with designers and game developers working side by side to develop custom looks. In addition to bi-weekly content expansions, the company has plans to expand localisations to Asia primarily Japan and South Korea as well as implement more socializing elements, such as Style houses, where players would collaborate to achieve cooperative goals, exchange items, and compete among other groups.

About Nordcurrent

Nordcurrent is the biggest Lithuanian video game developer and publisher, known for such releases as Cooking Fever,  Murder in the Alps, Airplane Chefs, Sniper Arena. Focusing on freemium and casual games, the company created over 50 games since 2002, attracting more than half billion players  worldwide.

This article was sourced from a media release sent by Gabrijela Petrikyte @ Blue Oceans PR

Emerging Fashion Designer Of The Week: Introducing The Talented Tania Orellana Negrete

Tania Orellana Negrete is a 24-years-old fashion designer who hails from Irapuato, Guanajuato in Mexico. She’s an industrial designeer, but fashion has always been her passion. She initially started in the fashion world as a model, but then because she had a knack for fashion design, she decided to pursue this passion. This career was perfect for her because it opened her mind to the creative world – she started creating her brand just like a project for school, and to her surprise, it blew up! She’s only had a year with her brand, and she can’t believe how far she has come.

Sassy & Co Magazine recently caught up with Tania to discuss her journey in the fashion world, and here’s what went down:

How did you get into the fashion industry?

Well, I think when you want something, you will eventually attract it. Since I was in school, I talked and asked everyone I knew about my interests, and with time, the opportunities arrived. Eventually, with the support of all the people who love me, it prompted me to do what I love. Because of my interests, I ended up in school. And because of my school and teachers, I ended up in my first fashion job, and I was able to create my brand. And because of my brand, now I’m growing a lot, meeting a lot of successful people, and having amazing fashion experiences.

What do you like most about being a designer?

Each collection has a full concept and a history to tell. So it’s amazing for me to create and put together all the elements that perfectly create and express myself through my clothes because each concept is about my beliefs, future, and what I love.

Downside to being a fashion designer?

The fashion industry is so big and strong that it can put you off so easily if you don’t have an open mind.

>> It’s impossible to be creative all the time<<

It sounds crazy, and it was hard for me to accept that because” I’m a designer.” But it’s real. To be a good creator, you need to disconnect the fashion world from your mind and think beyond.

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

I love everything about fashion. From the beginning until now, all the way has been memorable because it is part of what I am now. Of course, I had amazing experiences like NYFW and a collaboration with Shein. But the real thing is that the memorable experiences for me are the ones that nobody can see, like the launching of my first collection, the happiness of doing what I love, or knowing the right people in the right place at the right moment, who inspires me and impulse me to keep going and keep doing incredible things.

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

In my last project in NYFW, I met three people that opened my eyes and inspired me a lot. They are the influencer Tania Rendon, the stylist Neto Soberanes and the fashion designer Ricarso Seco. Each one had a different life, but almost the same thinking – that for me is the key to their success.

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

The fashion industry is so big but so small at the same time. You can see big companies unreachable when in reality, they are not so impossible to reach. So the lesson is: go for all you want. Even if you think that it’s too much for you. Go for it because it’s incredible once you have it.

Is your family supportive of you being a fashion designer?

Totally. I’m so grateful to have all the support that my family and friends give me. The people who love me know what I love and what I want to achieve, so the real thing is that it is not just the support but the impulse to achieve my dreams.

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

I had an excessive production in my first collection because I thought that I was going to sell everything, and it was hard for me because it wasn’t… But you need to fall to learn, so I would not change anything. Just do all step by step and get better in my financial part.

What is the best advice you have ever been given?

Decree it, and it will be. Be sure of what you want, take action, and you will have it.

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

Now I’m going to move to Milano to start a master, grow my brand, and get closer to the luxury fashion world. So in the future, I will have a luxury and bigger brand with international recognition. And let will see what else happens on my way… I have my mind open!