STORY WRITTEN BY TARA LYNN JOHNSON
For Digital First Media
Designer Victoria Wright may look to the past for inspiration for her creations, but the way she’s raising funds for her Fall 2015 line is very 21st century. Wright, the owner and designer for Victoria Wright, LLC, is starting a campaign on May 1 on Kickstarter, the world’s largest funding platform for creative projects.
She decided to raise capital because she learned while a resident in the Philadelphia Fashion Incubator (a designer-in-residence program run by the City of Philadelphia, Macy’s Center City, Center City District, and various educational institutions) that you can’t do much without money.
“You really need funds to push your brand to the next level and to get into people’s closets,” she said.
Through Kickstarter, Wright hopes to raise $15,000. People who “donate” are actually pre-ordering the pieces from her line, and with a discount, she said.
Wright, a graduate of Moore College of Art and Design, has done freelance design work and internships. After her year with the Fashion Incubator, she’s eager to continue to help her fashion career bloom. She has always dreamed of having her own business. Growing up in New Britain Township near Doylestown, Wright knew she would be some kind of artist.
“I was always drawing and I always loved to draw women in dresses,” she said. “One day it hit me, when I was 12 or 13, that I could do that as a career. I can make these pretty dresses.”
Wright thinks fashion is more than functional.
“When I put on a dress that makes me feel good, that makes my day that much better. Clothes can give you confidence,” she said. “It’s also a great artistic form of expression. It’s interesting to see how different people express themselves.”
Wright describes her design style as contemporary. She likes to create pieces that mix with what people might already have in their wardrobes. Her Fall 2015 line is inspired by Audrey Hepburn and has a 1960s Paris feel, she said. She also took some inspiration from 1960s spy movies and TV shows like “Mad Men.”
The line features black and white prints, some pieces with floral motifs. They’re not “overly girly,” she said, and “they’re bold and modern.” Some of the fabric she’s using comes from France. She’s aiming to make sophisticated looks that give a nod to the past, but also have contemporary touches, like cutouts and exposed zippers.
There’s excitement as it all starts to come together.
“Sometimes there are days when it’s really difficult and I think I’m crazy,” she said, “but I wouldn’t want to be doing anything else.”
Wright, who is based out of Philadelphia now, would “love to be a household name,” she said. Her long-term goals include having boutiques in the region as well as nationally and internationally. Right now, she’s creating lines for two seasons per year with several pieces per collection. As her business grows, she’ll expand and include more stock and styles.
She hopes to stay based in Philly. “The fashion scene is up and coming,” she said. “It would be cool to continue be a part of that.”
There will be challenges and she’ll make mistakes, but she said she learns from them.
“I keep my eye on the prize and keep looking forward,” Wright said. “This is what makes me happy.”
What: Victoria Wright – Kickstarter Launch Party
When: 6-9 p.m. Friday, May 1 and on Kickstarter.com after that
Where: The Bazemore Gallery, 4339 Main St., Manayunk, Philadelphia.
For more information and the Kickstarter link (May 1 and after): http://www.victoriawrightdesigns.com or http://www.facebook.com/victoriawrightdesigns