The girls on House of DVF were recently challenged to dream up a design for DVF—and sketch their vision to show Diane and her team. For an outsider’s opinion on their work, we turned to the ultimate illustrated insider, the fabulous Sew Sketchy.
Tell us a little bit about who you are.
I’m a New York fashionista with a really sassy attitude who is cursed with good taste. I’m as versatile as Bergdorfs, as experimental as Barneys, as practical as Bloomingdale’s and as irrational as Macy’s. I’m a 9-to-5 Carrie with a Charlotte sensibility and a splash of Samantha on a Saturday night. I have never had a Miranda moment ever. The first thing I do when I wake up is greet my closet. My clothes are like my children. I was raised by a pack of glamazons, and was always taught that more is more and less is a bore and that everything goes with leopard.
For some of our Brand Ambassador candidates, the design challenge was their first time sketching! Being a veteran, what did you think about the candidate’s work?
I was actually really impressed by some of the design proposals the girls put together and really confused by some of the others. Some girls totally got it and came up with really chic ideas. I loved Hanna Beth’s romper idea—I would buy that in a second! I also loved Cat’s idea where she drew a chic twist in the back of a dress—that I’d also wear. These specific sketches were very clear to read and well explained which is why they both really stood out to me.
The girls are constantly balancing being true to themselves and being on-brand as a potential face for DVF. How do you approach mixing your own aesthetic with a brand’s identity when you style an outfit?
It’s all about attitude, and the components you add to a look to make it your own. Whether you’re preppy, minimalist, or grungy, it’s the accessories that you adorn yourself with that make something anyone can wear different, stylish and unique.
What’s the DVF look you’d love to wear next?
That parka jacket with the sparkly lips that Diane was wearing in the episode—my god that look is flawless. As you can probably tell, I love a statement piece and I always wear something that’s a head turner or that says “Hello, I have arrived.”
Is there a candidate whose sketching or design idea really stood out to you?
Leigh was the one candidate who really stood out to me. I thought to myself, Wow, water coloring and putting this all together on a plane? That’s major—snaps for her! She reminded me of myself when I was working at Vogue. I loved her hustle and her make it work attitude, especially because she didn’t make a scene about the rough circumstances she was in while completing the project. She just got it done, and you know what? Her idea was chic, simple, and sellable. I think she nailed it.
Was there anyone you would have sent home based on their sketching skills or design? Any suggestions on how she could have approached the design challenge differently?
The designs that Cree made were just a projection of her vision and design aesthetic that had really nothing to do with DVF’s brand voice. The first thing she should have looked at is what the brand stands for, which to me, is effortless elegance. DVF exudes femininity by utilizing powerful prints and streamlined silhouettes. Second, she should have really focused on the customer, and the customer’s needs. DVF is a go-to brand for women who want to put on one outfit that is bold, beautiful, easy to wear, and is suitable for a variety of occasions, ages and body types. Cree’s outfits didn’t consider the multifaceted brand that DVF truly is.
You gained a major, and high-profile, following very quickly while staying true to yourself. Any advice for these girls who are trying to make an impact in the fashion world?
If you’re trying to make an impact in the fashion world, don’t be one of those poser fashion people. They freak me out and bore me. Being in the fashion industry is like being in the Hunger Games but worse. Only the strong survive it. You have to be true to yourself, and true to your aesthetic. Embrace criticism only from the people you admire, not the masses. In order to make an impact, do something that no one else is doing and listen to your instincts. Oh, and always keep your sense of humor.