High quality materials and unique glamorous styling are essential for Vessela Zarankova, the genius behind her namesake brand, Zarankova. The Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD) grad’s eye for luxe details conjures up nostalgia for more glamorous times while still reflecting a modern sense of fun and movement. Designed and created in the USA, the line captures the natural combination of the greatest cities of the world from golden years ago. We spoke with Vessela about bring in a creative business and why traveling is  good for both inspiration and business.

1. How and why did you start designing?

I developed design skills from a young age, even before I got my Masters in Fashion from SCAD. Design has always been part of me and I developed this passion through the years.

2. What is your biggest hurdle building a brand today?

I love fashion and its creative side.  You may be exceptionally creative but, if you run your own fashion label, you also need to be business savvy. The hardest part is making a living from what you love to do. You have to know your customer and be realistic. You have to work unexpectedly long hours and offer a unique product to your customer. Even if you have a small fashion label, you should still make allowances for traveling to major fashion shows. These shows are one of the few ways to get your brand out there.

3. What do you think about fashion today?

Society is extremely fashion and style conscious. It might be important to you to look fashionable, but it is more important to choose clothes that are comfortable and that suit your style.

4. What is your fashion philosophy?

High quality materials and unique glamorous styling are essential for my brand. I seek an elegant, exclusive look, that is comfortable at the same time, and beautifully executed.

5. Where do you go and what do you do for inspiration?

I love painting, traveling, and hunting for treasure in my spare time, exploring something new and unique. Each season new ideas from art, travel, music, architecture, nature, film, theatre, and new technologies are applied to and transformed in my silhouettes and clothing.

6. Any tips and tricks of the trade?

Be ready to sacrifice more than you’ll ever expect to. Never be afraid. Never give up. Choose carefully which shows to attend and which will bring positive outcomes for your brand. Love what you do to the fullest, because this will drive you.

See Vessela’s new lines, available for pre-purchase on her Nineteenth Amendment Virtual Studio.

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