Estella Lokiru is currently an upcoming fashion designer from Calgary, Alberta. Her brand is call EJR by Estella Lokiru. All the apparels are hand-stitched. She made her first skirt when she was only 14 years of age. Let’s talk to Estella and find more about her
What is the biggest lesson that you have learned since you started your label?
Few of the biggest lessons I learned is the importance of networking and time. Being in the fashion industry is not as easy as I had thought but I have been blessed to have such great response with EJR. I was featured in AFWE (African Fashion Week Edmonton) and on The Sunday Omony Show at Shaw Channel within my first year of designing.
How would you describe your design aesthetic?
With EJR, I want every woman who wears it to feel comfortable, strong, beautiful, sexy and different/unique. Most importantly, feel good about making a difference in the world.
If you are a superhero, what kind of powers would you have?
If I was a superhero, my power will have to be being able to be in 2 places. So many things to do.
What sparked your interest in Fashion?
My interest in designing was sparked by my desire to help the Orphans in my home country Juba, South Sudan. I love fashion and I have been sewing since I was about 9 or 10yrs old. I went to visit the Orphanage back in 2013, the situation and conditions those children are living in literally brought me to tears and I just knew right then that I had to do something to help change it and what's better than using fashion to change the world. 30% of proceeds goes to the Orphanage
Are you self-taught or did you study fashion design?
I am self-taught. I have been considering going to design school to better my techniques definitely.
Where do you find inspiration for your creations?
My inspirations comes from the fabrics. The way a fabric feel and moves, is how I decide what to make. I don’t sketch and each piece is hand sewn so, every piece is like a work of art for me.
What’s next for you?
Fundraisers for the Orphanage home and working on a new collection.
Anything we should be keeping our eyes open for in the future?
New summer collection and my website