Photography : Knky Photos
LW: How old are you?
DJ: 18. I just turned 18 last week!
LW: What is your current education?
DJ: I attend Salem High Visual Arts Academy in Virginia Beach
LW: How would a friend describe your personality?
DJ: My friends would say I'm the social butterfly in any situation, never keeping still. Also, I am the one always aiming to surpass expectations, haha! My friends love/hate my hardwork and determination.
LW: When did you start loving fashion?
DJ: Fashion has always been a love of mine ever since I was a child, I just never took it seriously until others saw a talent for fashion in me.
LW: How did you first get into designing?
DJ: Ever since I was 5 I would make design sketches, but I never expected it to get my anywhere. No one believed I could actually bring my designs to life until a classmate of my named Kyle B. trusted me with his sewing machine and gave me all the materials to start out with. My first dress is actually the crocheted diamond studded see-through dress.
Just one of his many detailed sketches. So much talent.
LW: Who is your favorite designer?
DJ: Designers Alexander McQueen and Gou Pei are my idols. Their designs are so eccentric and well crafted, truly works of art.
LW: Was VA Fashion Week your first time debuting? Have you done this before?
DJ: Yes, VA Fashion week was my first ever show. I was fortunate enough to be featured in the finale show. I was even invited to show at Brooklyn Fashion week.
Here are a few pictures from his debut at VA Fashion Week.
These designs are SO beautiful. The second and last picture are my favorites!
Photography: Brooks Fotographie
LW: What is your inspiration for your designs?
DJ: My inspirations derive from various cultures, artworks, textures, and natural elements. I have some designs where I juxtapose Parisian and Chinese elements, and even sheer with leather and studs. Contrast. I love it.
(I could not agree more with that last statement.)
LW: Describe the process it took to make this collection and to debut it.
DJ: My most recent collection, Romantica, took almost exactly one year to produce. Romantica is the combination of 3 collections (The Beginning Collection, Black&Gold, and Romantica) which were produced all while I was working on my AP Art portfolio and completing my academy classes. The process really just came naturally; whenever shopping for fabrics, linens, or accessories I just grab whatever jumps out at me then let the fabrics speak to be. I always look for both the beautiful and the ugly, haha.
(Nothing wrong with that, haha.)
DJ's promo picture for his ROMANTICA Collection
Photographer: DJiun Wang
LW: Have you ever been to TVFU before or is it your first time?
DJ: This was my first year at TVFU, such a phenomenal experience. I was truly in my element being surrounded by other exceptionally talented youths. Everyone was so beautiful too! I was lucky enough to be interviewed and featured in NY MAG: THE CUT style portion
(That's super cool! Jealous!)
DJ in NY Mag: THE CUT style portion
LW: Tell us about the sessions you had at TVFU this year and what your experience was like.
DJ: I attended the Parabal Gurung, Nicole Richie, Christian Siriano, and Phillip Lim sessions along with seminars with the editors of Teen Vogue. I was excited to learn about such different designers' creative processes, inspiration, and how they rose to fame. This was especially a great networking experience meeting wonderful people such as Lauren-Ashley Walker!
(Aw, how nice! Agreed, again.)
LW: Can your describe the outfit you wore to TVFU?
DJ: I wore a custom designed shirt with an ombre bleach dipped denim jacket with a gold studded collar, a 3/4 sleeve custom blazer from Taiwan, maroon skinny jeans from Japan, Lacoste shoes, and gold studded bracelets (lots of em)!
LW: What was your favorite session this year and why?
DJ: Christian Siriano is on my list of inspirational designers. I was extremely despaired that I didn't get to personally meet and get a picture with Christian Siriano, but one day it will happen. Hearing his creative process inspires me to find more ways to connect the world of fashion with art.
LW: Where do you see yourself in the future?
DJ: Head designer of McQueen.
I don't know about you, but I loved his answers. If you want to check out more of Wang's talent, here are three links you can visit!