It’s one thing to see really cool girls, – Kitty Cash and Justine Sky, to name a couple – wearing really cool fashion. But it’s even cooler when that same cool fashion brand makes an impact on your best friend. Somewhere between risqué and everyday fashion, lie the meticulously handcrafted chain objects of Friday by Friday.
You can say Friday is a regular on Never Had A Vanity, but we always bring you something new -this time, a candid, in-depth interview on the future of female.
You’ve come a long way…from head pieces, to beaded bracelets to now chain objects. I feel like the chain objects is “it”. Looking back, how has this evolution been for you?
Yes, Friday by Friday has come such a long way, and you’ve seen all of it! I feel like I’ve kind of settled in. Like when you move to a new city and you’re shopping around for an apartment and you find THEE spot, and it feels like home. You feel comfortable and you can create well in the space.
In the beginning, I just wanted to create; I didn’t know this was going to happen. It was probably meant to happen. I started off with those little headpieces that were so fragile. You put one on and it could pop. But I knew that’s not what I wanted to do full-time. I knew headpieces wasn’t it because it was so overdone.
Then came the beaded bracelets. I actually just got a Facebook memory of them – three years ago. They surprisingly sold a lot and almost made me switch to the male market! I had so many male customers. I had no idea I could appeal to men. But beaded bracelets were also overdone.
Then a few years ago the chain objects happened. The first piece I made was a halter-top. Moving forward, there are so many opportunities. It’s a never-ending project. I didn’t think I would be able to push out this much product.
I’m watching everything unfold and it’s all so exciting. Without question, things are moving fast for Friday by Friday. How are you keeping up?
I don’t think about it. The mind of a creative is always crazy and if we stop to sort it out it just doesn’t work. I know the things I have to do. I do hair on the side and creative consulting and then I have the program with kids. I don’t like to over think, I just like to do it. If I know I have to promote this new harness collection because I want people to know about it, I’ll make a very small list of things.
I also meditate, but I’m not going to lie to you, I LOVE what I do. I love making these things. If I didn’t love it, I wouldn’t be able to push out these collections. You gotta have fun doing what you love.
Definitely! All of that being said, you’re coming out of your shell on social media more. You’re starting to show your face. Before, the girl behind these amazing chain objects was a mystery. Why now?
Before, I was just interested in being behind the scenes. For me, once you put yourself out there, there’s no turning back, and living in New York, image is hand in hand with talent and I’ve never like that. I like to leave the house in my dirty sweats and my old chucks and I still do that. I don’t care how famous I get.
At first, I wanted the work to push for itself. But after a test I recently did while in Toronto – I said I’m going to go on the balcony, post some photos and see what happens – I don’t know what happened, but there was a shift. There was a sudden amount of people who wanted to collaborate and reach out.
There are still things I don’t like about that because my face shouldn’t drive you to look at my work. It’s not saying “I don’t like how I look,” I just want to be low key. I don’t want to dress up and put on makeup everyday. But I made the decision. It’s kind of exciting now for people to know and respect you because they see what you’re doing. It’s cool. I used to be the creep reading people’s comments but now it’s nice to be able to smile when I see them in the street. I want to be apart of recreating our culture in New York and not encourage being standoffish. If you see me out, have a conversation with me.
Let’s talk about influences. Who are some individuals you admire for either their work in fashion or overall creativity?
Alexander McQueen. I didn’t realize at first, but I find myself looking at their pieces a lot. The Friday by Friday chain warrior dress was actually inspired by a McQueen dress that I saw and how much detail it had.
People. Girls on Instagram. I like to look at everyone’s style to see what they’re doing and wearing to see what designs I could make to fit into their wardrobe easily without compromising their style.
You talk about girls and women a lot and the Friday by Friday tagline is “The Future of Female.” Can you explain why the brand takes such a strong stance on feminism.
As I got older, I got really interested in the topic of feminism. I feel like when you’re younger and you hear that word, Rosie the River comes to mind – or this overly bearing strong woman that hates men. I learned that it’s so important to be a girl. We make life. Understanding that, became a direct reflection of the brand.
Over the last season, I really made it a priority to push “The Future of Female.” Every two weeks on Instagram it was a constant message, and it also doubled as a divider whenever I posted something new.
I felt like it was very important to push that because a lot of girls, even our age, don’t understand the importance of supporting other females, working with them, pushing them and making them feel good. That’s what the brand does. Some people might not feel comfortable in their body and I kind of push the idea to not overthink it. Don’t care about other people saying you have stretch marks on your boobs or your boobs are too saggy to wear this. We all have insecurities that we face everyday. So, I wanted to make these chain objects – they’re a little scandalous sometimes and it’s ok to be like that. It’s ok if you’re wearing the nude chain piece and you see a hint of nipple. There’s a time and place for everything. That’s also why I promote layering my pieces a lot.
Did you always know you wanted to be a designer, because I know you studied Fashion Business/Merchandising?
If someone told me ten years ago that I would be making chain clothing and it would have a such a strong impact on women I would tell them “teach me, because how is that going to work?”
I don’t consider myself a designer. I say I’m a creative. I always had my hands in creating something whether it was doing hair or sewing – I hate sewing by the way – I’ve always been creating in some sort of way. It doesn’t come as a surprise that I am where I am, but I do wake up some times in a daze. I would just look at my work. It’s so weird but it feels right.
My niece and little cousin had the pleasure of attending the Fashion with Friday Summer Program this year and already can’t wait for next year. How have you adjusted to stepping out of your showroom and into the classroom?
It’s exciting. I never knew I would like teaching. I feel like the school program was meant to be. My sister used to run a fashion club at a charter school she worked at and I would visit them for presentations, and their little minds were always so interested. When my sister changed schools, she helped me pitch the fashion club to the new school. I went through the interview process – had to make a last minute proposal and everything – and the rest is history.
Deciding to do the Fashion with Friday Summer Program had three reasons behind it. (1) Financially, I needed the income. (2) I thought why not continue the program into the summer? (3) I love kids and I love sharing my experiences with them. We did lots of projects, went on trips and had guests speakers and presenters. It was exciting to sit back and watch what the kids created. I wish I had that influence when I was their age.
What advice would you have for a budding creative who might have the world of ideas but still feels stifled?
You gotta be patient. I’m somewhere right in the middle. I know when to sit on things and when to act on things, and that’s a difficult place to get to because it’s a battle between the two at first.
Always believe in your craft. Don’t let other influences or haters tell you to get a “real job.” In a sense, they don’t believe that what you’re doing could turn profitable.
Stay on top of what you’re doing because it’s not always going to bring in money the first, second, third or even fourth year.
Don’t compare yourself to anyone else. It’s good to be inspired. But comparison will be the death of your creation.
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