Conversation with VANDAL
Are you self-taught or did you study fashion design?
Studied fashion design at Toronto’s Seneca College – Fashion Arts
Is there someone in the fashion industry who inspires you?
Two Japanese designers, Yohji Yamamoto and Nigo (founder of street-wear giant A Bathing Ape)
What made you take fashion more seriously and make a career out of it?
I have always taken fashion as a genuine interest – and when I learned how to create it, it took the passion to a new level.
How did you come to start your own line?
I wanted to create fashion under an alias, so a separate brand detached from my own name seemed appropriate. The goal is to create a whole new identity for the fashion itself, I did not want to have any association with it.
How has your work evolved since you began your own label?
With each collection, the fashion becomes more refined, inherits better construction and fit (as each season teaches me something new). Aesthetically, styling has become more sophisticated and mature but I constantly try to maintain a sense of playfulness.
How would you describe your brand?
VANDAL illustrates a hybrid of street-aesthetics and classic tailoring. An outerwear specialist, the label draws influence from multiple disciplines of fashion; fabricating statement pieces with a premise that is unmistakably fun-to-wear and exciting. Conceived in 2014, VANDAL serves as an alter-ego; a medium in which unorthodox styling, pattern design and colors can be relentlessly experimented upon - creations that communicate a sense cool and boldness.
How is your work received internationally?
Equally enthusiastic overseas; fashion is a universal language and when you inject excitement into your clothing, the reaction is always positive.
What are you fascinated by at the moment and how does it feed into your work?
Soft, pastel colors, and photography. These things will be very apparent in the SS/17 Collection.
What is the biggest lesson that you have learned since you started your company?
Always be time – sensitive to the “fashion calendar”, always create a timeline and plan and stick to it at all costs.
Are you superstitious or do you have any rules you live by?
Not superstitious. The only rule is that anything the label creates, must be top-notch.
Where do you go for inspiration?
Impossible to pinpoint any specific area(s) – inspiration is organic and comes from any and everywhere.
Do you design your own clothes, or you have go to label?
I design everything, including pattern making and fit assessments.
If you were a superhero, what kind of powers would you have?
Spider-man, with Tony Stark’s bank account.
In your opinion, which super villains needs fashion advice?
Pretty much all of them, whoever thought leotards and spandex jumpsuits were good a good idea?!
If you were to date super hero, who would you date and why?
Psylocke from X-men, because her outfit and sex appeal.
What advice do you have for other aspiring fashion designers?
Be willing and prepared to make compromises from your personal life / time – fashion design is extremely demanding.
Anything we should be keeping our eyes open for in the future?
Spring Summer 17 Collection @ Toronto Fashion Week, and hopefully one of the finalists at Mercedes Benz Start up!