Jordanna Leah is a die-hard Game of Thrones fan and loves everything from the Medieval era. She loves not only telling a story, but also portraying a period of history through her collection. I almost passed over her creations for an editorial feature on Englave, thinking that they were the work of an established designer. My jaw dropped when she told me that she just graduated from a fashion design school, “No way” I said. She smiled shyly and nodded to reassure me. Good talent is hard to come by these days, especially in Vancouver, a city never known for its fashion industry. And there she was standing in front of me, explaining her collection, not knowing that she is a rising talent and will one day make Vancouver proud.
I got the same reaction from my team when they first saw Jordanna’s work in person. Tarah, our makeup artist, even thought it was the work of a European designer. When I told her that she’s a recent graduate in Vancouver, Tarah said “What? No way!”. Well Jordanna, keep up the good work and make Vancouver proud!
Englave: How would you describe your brand in 3 words?
Jordanna: Feminine, refined & a little bit enchanting
Englave: Your work is heavily inspired by the medieval era. What is it about the medieval era that piques your interest?
Jordanna: History in general has always been a huge interest of mine, especially the way clothing evolves and recycles ideas into something new and innovative. But what really drew me to this inspiration for my most recent collection was the fantasy aspect so often attached to medieval history. I’m a huge fan of fantasy & sci-fi and the opportunity to bring that into fashion was something I couldn’t pass up.
Englave: Now that you have graduated from school, and are moving on to working on your Ready-to-Wear brand, how will you translate medieval inspirations into your collection?
Jordanna: Medieval is just one of my many inspirations and passions. My ready-to-wear brand will definitely still maintain the ethereal aesthetic and dramatic quality I’ve built from my first collection. However the inspiration for Fall/Winter 2015, while still history related, is quite different.
Englave: When do you plan to launch your first Ready-to-Wear collection?
Jordanna: Hopefully for May 2014 to show then go into production for fall 2014. The exact launch is in the air right now but will be posted at my website jordannaleah.ca and facebook https://www.facebook.com/JordannaLeahDesigns
Englave: Who will be your ideal customers?
Jordanna: The social, feminine, style-conscious and intelligent urban woman between the ages of 20-40. Women who are artistic, tech savvy, and early adopters of fashion. The kind of customer who is cultured and worldly; connected to their many creative communities, but calls Vancouver their home.
Englave: What is the biggest challenge that you face as an emerging designer?
Jordanna: Time management is definitely a big one, as an emerging designer we don’t always necessarily have the financial backing to be able to devoted 24/7 to our design work so its a lot of scheduling around a full-time pay the bills job as well as an internship. Also networking and gaining access to the right information and people for fabric, notions, production etc.
Englave: Which designer do you wish to collaborate with the most?
Jordanna: There is a huge list of designer’s I’d love to work with but specifically I would love to collaborate with a brand/designer such as Carine Gilson or Fleur Du Mal for a lingerie line
Englave: Where can we purchase your collection?
Jordanna: Once my FW15 collection is launched it will be available online at Jordannaleah.ca