CORNELL ‘CHICO’ NIEVES
DESIGNER JILL ALEXANDER DESIGNS
On behalf of our Publisher, Cornell ‘Chico’ Stevens and myself, I would like to officially welcome you to Cattura Vanity Magazine. ‘Cattura’is Italian for ‘to capture’ and we plan to capture and bring to you STUNNING, INTERESTING, INSPIRING, AMAZING AND BEAUTIFUL IMAGES, PEOPLE AND PLACES FROM ALL OVER THE WORLD. Chico’s vision for Cattura Vanity was to bring you fashion from all over the World for all women. So, together, we will be celebrating beauty diversity through fashion and lifestyle. We look forward to receiving your stories, submissions and ideas and bringing you the best of the best. Evie foster x
CATTURA VANITY MAGAZINE WILL OFFICIALLY LAUNCH MAY 2014 UNTIL THEN PLEASE ENJOY OUR SERIES OF MINI-MAG FEATURES
ON WOMEN IN THE FASHION INDUSTRY MAKING A DIFFERENCE
1. Who is Jill Alexander? A woman who is in love with life and her family, who loves to see new places and experience new things. A sensitive, intuitive, creative artist with ADHD. I am a mom, a wife, a daughter, a student of life, a prankster, a hugger. 2. What are the essential ingredients that go into running a successful label and staying in business? First is patience. Nothing comes quickly or easily so set a goal and just focus on accomplishing it. The rest will fall into place. Second is problem solving. Everyday a new hurdle arises. Some days they’re small, other days they seem insurmountable. Just take a look at the problem, find the best solution and move ahead anyway. Go with your gut. The biggest mistakes I’ve made so far were when I didn’t trust my first instinct because I listened to advice or tried to go with the flow. Your gut knows best.
3. What would you say is your greatest accomplishment as a designer? I know it sounds cliché, but, when a woman puts something on, and celebrates her body for the first time in a long time, walks a little differently with renewed confidence, I feel as though I’ve fully accomplished my goal. I’m lucky enough to have had the opportunity to experience that moment several times in the last four years. 4. What would you say is your greatest accomplishment as a woman? At first thought, I would say my children, but, my children aren’t really MY accomplishment, they’re their own accomplishment so it would have to be that I’m living life with purpose. That I’ve become someone that goes for what they want in this world. I feel as though every experience has brought me to where I am today and has built upon my confidence. I’m not afraid to hit the ground running with a new idea and see where it takes me. 5. What is a typical day for Jill Alexander? I wake up around 6:30 and am usually in my studio by 8:30.. Being a smaller fashion house there are usually multiple things on my desk that need completing. The cool thing about our office of women is that everyone works on their own schedule, different days and times so my projects and tasks change according to who’s on staff. I could be draping a new look for our next line, going over patterns pre production, traveling to LA to see our manufacturers, having lunch with our web designer going over upcoming concepts, or meeting at a shoot with models and photographers. This definitely suits my personality because I get bored easily. 6. What does Jill Alexander love to do in her down time? My favourite thing to do is to spend time with my family. It gets harder and harder as the years pass to find the time. My oldest is away in college and my youngest will be leaving in about a year. When we’re all together, I love to cook with them, play board games, look at old pictures and relive memories. Often, it’s just my husband and me at home with our 3 dogs. It’s a new phase for us and I’m really enjoying that too. Going out to dinner or to the movies has gone from something we did occasionally to something we do regularly. After 20 years he’s still my best friend. 7. Who or what inspires you? Women of all kinds inspire me. I love to read about women in business who are continually breaking the glass ceiling in their industries. I’m inspired by young women who are trying to find their calling so they experiment with many different things. I’m inspired by women older than me who have seem to found a peace and a satisfaction with life. I love their quiet confidence. I’m inspired by the women I know that are fighting a battle. I know too many women who are fighting cancer. I’m inspired by their strength, their faith, and their courage.
“Go with your gut. The biggest mistakes I’ve made so far were when I didn’t trust my first Instinct , becauseI listened to advice or tried to go with the flow. Your gut knows best.”
8. What are 5 things you could not live without? The love of my family The trust of my team The hope of the future The experience of the past The opportunity to make a difference in this life 9. If you were to give a designer coming into the plus industry one tip, what would it be? Be open to criticism. Learn from what people who experience your designs are saying about them. You’re never going to please everyone, but, I think the mistake that is often made is ignoring anything negative. Take the comments, filter through them, and change what you can while staying true to who you are. 10. Where do you see Jill Alexander Designs in 5 years? In 5 years I will be 50. Hopefully by then, this brand will have changed the lives of hundreds of thousands of women across the globe. I try not to get too ahead of myself when I envision the future. This year, (March 1) we are opening a store. I’m hoping that this store is the model for future stores. I want to create a space where women of ALL SHAPES AND SIZES feel welcomed, honoured and cared for. Other than that, we will continue to follow the adventurous path that lies before us.
Published on Jan 17, 2014