For fashionistas looking to perfect the chic and glamorous rocker girl image, look no further than the designs of talented up-and-comer Lauren Stucky, an L.A.-based designer and FIDM alumna.
Stucky made her fashion world debut in Spring 2011 with a line she describes as “classic chic with an edge.”
“I want my designs to be beautiful and timeless, but also capture the inspiration and that particular moment in fashion,” she explains. “My designs are for confident women who use fashion as an empowerment. Leather day-to-night, bold fur, lace and sheer tops –my designs are tailored to make women feel special and sexy.”
With her pieces being distinguished by an extensive use of leather and a luxurious European-inspired glam-rock vibe, Stucky explains that her designs are most appropriate for “going out attire, nighttime glam. Although some outfits are badass during the day! I love leather for day!”
Determined to realize her dream as a fashion designer, the Portland native moved to Los Angeles right after high school in order to further her education at the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising, and to live in a big city where she could experience and learn something new every day.
The decision to leave home and attend FIDM was certainly a great career move, and it may even be a life-changing one: while attending FIDM, Stucky has gained the basic skills that she can carry with her and build upon throughout her entire life.
“[The best part about attending FIDM was] seeing the change within myself over the course of my degree there,” she reflects. “I started out very tepid, and my confidence grew as I was learning new stuff. I didn’t feel pressure about grades; I just wanted to learn and finesse my craftsmanship.”
When asked about why she chose to pursue this particular career path, one simple reason explains it all: “I just do what I love! I’ve always been passionate about fashion and haven’t felt the same about any other profession. I am very blessed to be able to live out my dream.”
Stucky has an innate inclination towards fashion, and has been an avid reader of fashion magazines since a very young age, so this always seemed the natural path for her to take. About one year after graduating from fashion school, after working as a design assistant and interning for a few companies, she decided to follow the dream that she has always had: launching her very own line.
Deciding to launch a line seems to be the easy part; always coming up with refreshing and innovating design ideas for the line is probably the harder part. So where do her inspirations come from?
“I get my inspiration from literally everything!” explains Stucky. “Nature, everyday people, music, art, different cultures and societies, world affairs, etc. My inspiration is endless, really.”
As for the designers she admires most, Stucky cites YSL, Celine, Prada, Givenchy, Alexander Wang and Alexander McQueen.
“Alexander McQueen can do no wrong,” she gushes. “The romanticism and impeccable craftsmanship is always there, and anyone who can invest in buying McQueen should. Sarah Burton has done a tremendous job since she stepped in at keeping the brand alive.”
Given her numerous sources of inspiration, designer’s block does not seem to be posing a problem for Stucky. In fact, her biggest challenge is, “not feeding into the pressure,” she explains.
“There are millions of amazing designers in the world. It’s a tough competition! Just focusing on doing my own thing can be a struggle at times. On the flip side, this disconnection can lead to my greatest ideas and inspiration.”
Nonetheless, it seems that she has risen to the challenge!
Stucky recently showed her designs at Avalon in Hollywood at an event organized by Project Ethos, which showcases emerging and top design talents via live events as well as the World Wide Web.
“They emailed me about their fashion show, and I loved the idea and the people behind it so I agreed. The rest is history.”
She believes her involvement in Project Ethos has helped her as a designer.
“Doing any fashion show is always a new experience,” says Stucky. “I’ve been involved in three fashion shows now, and each one was so different! The shows help because you can see the people’s reaction: what pieces they love or don’t like as much.”
Stucky is sure to rise even further in the fashion world, as she has managed to strike the perfect balance between edginess, femininity and trendiness with her designs. In her latest collection, chiffon and tie-dye, along with other popular trends of the year, are seen repeatedly, and are blended in with her signature leather separates, which include vests, pants, tops and even bras.
As a fresh graduate from fashion school, Stucky may potentially inspire many aspiring fashion designers and fashion school students, for whom she has some advice: “Never give up, and always believe in yourself and what you are doing. Where there is a will there is a way. Also, fashion is art, so there is no wrong way to do it. Never design what you think someone else might like; create what you want.”
With her amazing fashion sense and her never-cliché designs worthy of a stylish rock goddess, along with her rapidly growing fan base among the young rock ‘n’ roll Hollywood throng, Stucky’s ultimate career goal doesn’t seem to be too far-fetched.
Stucky exclaims, “ I would love to show in New York Fashion Week someday, hopefully soon! Of course, Paris is the ultimate. I’ve gone to several seasons of NYFW and it’s always a blast. It is so encouraging to see the shows and how it’s all put together.”
But most importantly, she hopes “to be successful and happy at what I love doing. I think that is essentially the ultimate goal.”
To find out more about Lauren Stucky and her designs, visit her official website.