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Taking a Slice of Stitched

There’s a new show airing on Slice in Canada called STITCHED and it is everything you’d want out of a fashion competition series.

Nail-biting competitions, beautifully crafted designs and a judging panel of experts who would make even the best designer want to pull out all the stops.

And I had a chance to get the inside scoop from two of those judges – Fashion Personality, Joe Zee and Elle Canada’s Editor-in-Chief, Vanessa Craft.

Joe Zee

  1. What is the top quality you feel makes a fierce designer, who can stand out in the fashion world?

AUTHENTICITY. I always say there is no design stronger than you doing you. It’s not about following trends because really anyone can do that. It’s about doing what is truly in your heart. If you design from your gut, it will always be the one thing that stands out. And in an industry where there is so much to see constantly, standing out with authenticity will always be the best quality you can have as a designer.

  1. There are a lot of competitions on Stitched – what advice do you have for future competitors to cope with the pressure?

Stay focused and take a chance. The biggest mistake any designer can make here – and we saw it – is then they get too much in their heads. They are dealing with time pressure and design pressure, it can all be a lot. If you let all those ideals go and just throw caution to the wind, you would be surprised at what you can do. Don’t worry about your competitors and don’t worry about a ticking clock. Be adventurous and get things done.

  1. Was there one competition this season that was your absolute favourite? Why?

I always love the Surprise Challenge which is one based on unconventional materials. It’s the one challenge that always throws me for a loop and I think, well this is one they won’t be able to even come close to getting it right and they have all really surprised me. One particular one was an entire look from paper and with paper you can’t sew it or pin it, so what are you going to do? Let me just say, we were all BLOWN AWAY. Stay tuned for that one!

  1. You’ve guest judged a lot of reality TV competitions and Miss USA – was it more challenging being a recurring judge or more rewarding?

Of course to me, it’s way more rewarding to be a recurring judge. You can see a lot of different designs come through and even with the rotating door of contestants, you can be the constant. You know what to uphold as the ultimate standard forSTITCHED and that can only come with a recurring role. I love that we can help dispense that to the contestants but also to our viewers. Seeing us allows them to connect with us in a familiar way, whether they will agree with us or not on any particular design.

Vanessa Craft:

  1. What is the top quality you feel makes a fierce designer, who can stand out in the fashion world?

Tenacity. You need it to hold tight to your vision as a designer (which will constantly be challenged) and you need it to survive in a tough industry full of ups and downs.

  1. There are a lot of challenges on Stitched – what advice do you have for future competitors to cope with the pressure?

Know your strengths and work with them. Always leave your stamp of originality on anything you create in the competition.

  1. Was there one challenge this season that was your absolute favourite? Why?

There were so many! I was blown away by what the designers were able to create in the surprise challenges, like packing/moving materials and the no sewing challenge.

  1. Why do you think it was important to have the designers create pieces for all kinds of people and not just models week-over-week?

Everyone wears clothes, not just models! Fashion is for everyone – and it’s important to show that you can design for more than just one body type.

Thank you both for the exciting incite and be sure to watch STITCHED on Slice TV in Canada, Online here and Sunday nights at 9 PM EST.

Image: Courtesy of Slice

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