A DAY IN THE LIFE WITH JANICE AT OUR L.A. DESIGN STUDIO
Now that you’ve gotten to know Janice, our Vice President of Design and creative mind behind all your favorite denim, a little better, we think it’s time to take you even deeper behind the seams.
Janice spends her days at our design studio in Downtown Los Angeles’s Arts District. This eclectic neighborhood is full of inspiration everywhere you turn, which makes it the perfect spot for our jean-ius denim team. Read on to get an exclusive look into her everyday processes and creative methods.
What does your typical day look like?
My typical day usually consists of research and development for future seasons and overseeing my team’s progress on various design projects. We usually are working on a few seasons at once, so we’re constantly talking through any new ideas or issues we might come across. We are always evolving the product for our customers needs based on current trends, as well as keeping eye on what has performed for us in the past.
Who/what do you look to for inspiration for your designs?
Most of the inspiration is from vintage styles and fabrics. The design process starts with creating the fabrics and dyes to achieve the end wash result. We incorporate a lot of technical advancements from the denim industry into our designs so we spend a lot of time on research and development. The outcome helps to mold and create the future collections.
What are your go-to websites for inspiration?
Mainly Instagram at the moment—I love scrolling through and spotting unique, fashion-forward styles and trends. I also always keep up with what’s on the runway.
Tell us about your creative process.
My design process starts with what new innovation we can utilize. We utilize many performance blend fabrics with great recovery emphasizing fit, hand feel, and comfort in our items. In order to provide this truly authentic experience we spend a lot of time developing fabrics and washes in our facilities. Our processes are definitely more time consuming and more expensive with a lot of steps used to create our final denim masterpiece.
Where did your love for denim stem from? And when did it start?
I have always been interested in engineering, chemistry and pattern making. With the art of denim, you really need to understand indigo dye and how to treat it to get a true vintage appearance. As a teenager, I had no idea that denim was even washed. When I walked into a factory it was like a light bulb went off. There were so many possibilities.
What is your favorite part about designing for Silver Jeans Co.?
I think that it really is a small company. The owners empower each employee to treat the company as if it was their own and provide a huge amount of artistic freedom. I really feel that I have grown up with our customer and have a great understanding of who they are.
How did you find the design office in DTLA?
We were visiting a trim supplier with our sister company, Jag Jeans, at a building in the L.A. Arts District. I fell in love with the space and when the time came to look for a larger space for the design team I began looking. Thankfully there was a space in the next building and we immediately began renovating the space to suit our needs—I was so excited.
Why did you choose DTLA for the design office?
We wanted a large, open space with some architectural interest. We took three adjacent lofts and knocked down all the walls to create the space we needed. We wanted a clean look with a cement floor and white walls—the skylight and wood ceilings added a heritage warehouse feeling. It is light and bright which can be unusual when you get into warehouse spaces. It’s also surrounded by some of the best art in the country: street art, murals, art galleries and lofts. There’s so much character in the neighborhood which I think helps inspire the team.
What’s your proudest accomplishment as a designer to date?
I think it’s when I have an idea for a new fit type or style, am passionate about it, and then the masses see and recognize that and it becomes one of our best sellers. This happened with Suki and Elyse—they were new fits and now people treat them like part of their family. It feels really great.
Tell us about your latest collection, what you’re working on now and what’s to come.
I am looking at creating fabrics that look like classic rigid denim but still have stretch. I am personally sick of all the super lightweight jegging like fabrics that are offered for the plus customer so we are developing items that are more vintage-inspired.