One-On-One With Top Designer Jason Wu

The West coast-raised designer talks The Room, Target and plans for New Years

One-On-One With Top Designer Jason Wu

Photo by Georgia Esporlas

West coast-raised designer Jason Wu drops by the room in Vancouver to celebrate the new space and his collection for fall.

FLARE: You have brought the Jason Wu touch to many different product categories – from bathroom hardware to jelly shoes for Melissa. What area would you still love to get into?
I’m just getting started. I was really ready to expand on the Jason Wu world with my first foray into nail polishes with CND. I recently collaborated with Brizo on a faucet. It’s a really chic matte black. Home products are really an area that I’m keen on getting into because it’s a personal interest of mine.

How would you articulate what goes into the making of a Jason Wu for Target (launching February 5) versus your signature Jason Wu label?
It’s about translating my vision at a price point with different materials and parameters. I was really happy with how everything turned out because the collection is proof that beautiful things don’t necessarily have to cost a lot. Expect to see a completely unique line that actually doesn’t look like any one of my collections but still has my taste and my aesthetic.

Some of your side projects include maintaining the blog on your site and a collaboration with the Melissa Gallery in Sao Paolo (Galeria Melissa). Why is it important for you to have other artistic endeavours on the go?
It’s fun to play writer because as a designer, it’s important for me to look outside of fashion to get inspiration. In Sao Paolo, for example, the project was a 4-story building and I envisioned the entire thing covered in lace. I wanted my signature to come through. Now with media as readily available and as accessible as it is, it’s a great way for people to get to know a little bit about why I do what I do and the intent behind it. Designers used to be such a mystical thing. Social media has helped us become more humanized. At the end of the day there is a pair of hands that goes into making every garment and it’s important to showcase that.

Who would you say your mentors have been?

Definitely my parents – my mother especially. She has really allowed me to explore my interests and artistic side. She gave me my first sewing machine when I was ten. She’s a life coach in the best possible way.

You grew up for a time in Vancouver. What does it mean to you to be back and have your line carried at The Room?
I learned English in Vancouver so that’s a big memory. I was nine. I lived here for quite a while and I remember downtown Vancouver and The Bay. This is the city where I learned about fashion and got my start in sewing. I suppose I’ve come full circle coming back to the new Bay, The Room, and having my collection available here.

Your resort campaign video was inspired by a trip to Puerto Rico. Where do you dream of going next?
I’m going to Punta Mita in Mexico for New Years.

Click here to preview Jason Wu’s upcoming collection for Target.