ALEJANDRA

VÁZQUEZ

Recently graduated from CENTRO, Ale Vázquez is a promising young fashion designer, based in Mexico City. 

We had the chance to interview her to talk about her passion for aesthetics, her creative process and what it means to be a fashion designer in Mexico.

Interview by Kate Peña Ríos

Tell us a little bit about you. 

My full name is Mariel Alejandra Vázquez Lozano. I'm 26 years old, scorpio, born in Mexico City. 

From Ale Vázquez’s portfolio

How would you describe your personality? Do you think people perceive the same thing you’re describing? 

At first, I may be a reserved person, but I think you get to know me well when I trust you. I can be very loyal and can provide help when someone needs it. I am a very happy person; I like to laugh a lot and I like to make others laugh. I have a strong character and I can be sensitive at the same time, although for the same reason I sometimes hide it. I work hard for what I want and I don't like when things don't go my way. I think it is better to experiment and do things and see everything as an experience than to stay with the desire to do it. I like to enjoy the moments when I am with my family and friends. I may be indecisive but I always know what I don't like or want. I like to be organized, although sometimes it’s hard for me. I am very curious; I like to investigate. I am very visual and I always like to touch things. I am a perfectionist and sometimes I can be hard on myself, although lately I have learned to be kinder to myself and accept that many times you are not in control of things. I enjoy traveling, learning new things. It's going to sound a little cliché but I like to enjoy the finer things in life. I don't really know if people perceive me this way, but I think they do. 

What led you to become a fashion designer? Was it always your first choice?

I always thought about studying design, although I didn’t know specifically which branch. Since I was a child I loved colors and textures a lot. I used to draw and buy ribbons all the time. When I grew up, I went to a talk where I learned what textile designers did, especially in haute couture, where they are in charge of the fabrics and all the embroidery and applications design. That’s where I knew I wanted to study textile design. When I was studying that degree, I felt that something else was missing to complement what I was already doing. I needed to learn to create things with what I already designed. So, I decided to study a degree in textile and fashion design, where the two complemented each other to create something unique. It was there that I realized that what I enjoyed the most, in addition to sketching and designing, was finding an inspirational subject, making the color palette and looking for fabrics and materials to have a textile palette. Also, the feeling and satisfaction of seeing the result of all the work.  
 

Where do you get your inspiration from? 

I get inspired by nature, photography, architecture and socio-cultural subjects. Also, thanks to my last collection, I realized that I am still attracted by the same things that I loved as a child.  


How would you describe your style as fashion designer?

My style as a fashion designer is very clean. I don’t like the excess or chaos of things; it is a bit minimalist. I always like to play with the design of the sleeves. They are almost always different and have characteristics that attract attention to them, I don’t like to make simple sleeves. I use oversized silhouettes a lot. I really like colors, although sometimes I use a neutral color along with some color that makes it stand out or I also use color blocks a lot. I usually like colorful clothes, but I don’t usually mix many colors at the same time in the same piece. I like to use materials that are pleasant to the touch and that are different, that have something special that catches my attention or makes me love it. I should also mention that I love neoprene and knitwear. Lately, I’m very attracted to fluffy and padded garments.  

From Ale Vázquez’s portfolio

From Ale Vázquez’s portfolio

Describe for us your creative process. 

My creative process begins when I choose the subject in which I will be inspired. Then I develop a visual universe, making some mood boards and looking for photographs that will define the direction of the project. From that universe I begin to look for a color palette and the materials. They must be related to the subject. To start sketching and obtaining garments or looks, I do an exercise that allows me to obtain silhouettes, I normally use the collage technique, although for my last collection this process was more experimental and related to the subject, playing with dough, modeling clay and manipulating slime. The process for obtaining silhouettes can depend a lot on the subject. At the same time, if I want to do some kind of textile design, I would do some test and experimentation with fabric and other materials. It is a lot of a trial and error process to be able to decide what is the best to really create and get what I imagine.  

 

If you had the chance to be the creative director of a luxury brand, which one would you choose? 
  

I don´t think I can name just one, but I would like to be the creative director of Valentino, Bottega Veneta, Jil Sandler, JW Anderson, Prada, Christian Wijnants.

How do you perceive the fashion industry in your country, Mexico?

I think the fashion industry in Mexico has been growing more and more, and it is a little more recognized worldwide. Before, there were many designers who had this same idea of having collaborations with artisans, which is not bad, but they always ended with very similar garments. Now, I see more designers with more diverse proposals and some that, although they continue with the idea of making these collaborations, they have different and more interesting ideas and proposals. I think that everyone is contributing to define what Mexican fashion is in all its expression and diversity. I think that, as Mexican designers, we have advantages that designers in other parts of the world do not have, such as growing up surrounded by colors, living in a place where everything can happen and having a culture full of traditions. Of course, there’s still a long way to go, we could have more recognition abroad because there’s a lot of talent, but I think that before that, we have to make more Mexicans turn to see more Mexican design, that they know all the process and work behind it so that they are more interested in consuming it and paying the right and fare price for it.  

 

 

How would you like to contribute for the fashion community?

  

From my position as a fashion designer, I can contribute to the industry by sharing my unique point of view of design. Bringing new designs, materials and methods to work. Also, it is important to make different collaborations with other people in the industry, giving them their recognition and fair treatment. Put aside toxic competition, and truly work as a team.  

From Ale Vázquez’s portfolio

From Ale Vázquez’s portfolio

From Ale Vázquez’s portfolio

What’s next for Ale Vazquez in the fashion industry?

In the short term, I plan to work for a brand. I think it is important to learn first hand how a brand is managed, what is behind it to make it work. I would also like to do a master’s degree, either in administration, creative direction or in knitwear. In the long term, my goal is to have my own brand.  

©2020 Beuys Magazine, Revista de Moda, Fashion Magazine Mexico City

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