October 28, 2013

Designer Profile | Derek Jagodzinsky

Sleek fabrics, classic silhouettes, and an infusion of Cree culture are the hallmarks of LUXX ready-to-wear garments made by fashion designer Derek Jagodzinsky, a member of the Whitefish First Nation.

Jagodzinsky graduated from the University of Alberta with a Bachelor of Design degree, and went on to intern in New York with fashion designer Michael Kaye Couture. These experiences, Jagodzinsky explains, provided him with the opportunity to not only refine his skills in couture, but also to understand the business side of fashion from an international perspective.

LUXX clothing is produced in Edmonton, and is handmade in small quantities to ensure quality craftsmanship.

Jagodzinsky stated, "The target market for LUXX is a style conscious woman who wants to look professional and effortlessly chic in the workplace or anywhere life takes her. LUXX thinks local but at an international level with design, quality and craftsmanship that is world class."

Scroll down to read our interview with Jagodzinsky.

BB: Hello Derek! Thank you for taking time to tell us more about your work. Your latest collection, which was shown during Western Canada Fashion Week just a couple weeks ago, was phenomenal. When and why did you start creating fashion?
DJ: I have always been interested in fashion since I can remember. I love how fast and exciting it is, and how it is ever-changing. I love being artistic and making something out of nothing. I love a challenge - and of course I LOVE FASHION!

BB: What is the general process that you go through to create your work?
DJ: I always start off with a theme and take it from there and do a lot of draping off my bust form. I feel as though I make sculpture for the body.

BB: Your latest collection had a distinct theme - can you tell us more about your inspiration?
DJ: This season, I did a Native-inspired collection that featured hand-beading by Native women and a print that I made using Cree syllabic writing that reads "We will succeed" repeated to make a graphic pattern. Also, I love the four direction colors - red, white, yellow and black - because they represent the colors of all people on this earth. Beauty and diversity is Luxx ready to wear.

BB: Working in the fashion industry, you must come up against a lot of challenges- what has been your most challenging project to date?
DJ: I actually love a challenge and feel there are always obstacles in life. If life gives you lemons, you made lemonade.

BB: What are your goals as a designer?
DJ: My goal as a designer is to make my dreams come true by doing what I love, which is designing and helping people feel amazing and empowered in my clothing. I also want to be a mentor for younger creative Native people and to show them that with hard work and persistence you can do anything you dream of.

I am very proud to be Native and want to show the world how beautiful and regal our culture is. I am going to push this subject for seasons to come and am very excited about it. I like the directions that Native designers are going, and I want to be a commercially successful Native fashion designer so that youth will have role models to look up to. This is one of my dreams and I know if I work hard, it will be a reality.

BB: What are you passionate about?
DJ: I am passionate about humanity and learning more and more everyday about the world we live in. I am passionate about being creative, and this is my outlet from everything. My favorite place in the world is my studio - it is a place where time stops and I can just enjoy being creative.

Learn more about Luxx at their website or Facebook Fanpage. Click here to watch a CTV interview with the designer in his studio.

Spring/Summer 2014 Catwalk Credits: Location: Western Canada Fashion Week Hair: Western Canada Davines Artistic Team Makeup: Chevi.R & Deenee.R Models: Stunning Photo: Kelly Rosborough