Interview with Washington Roberts
Allow me to introduce to you the talented Nigerian-born fashion designer, Washington Roberts. He is the face behind this beautiful label. I am thrilled to have gotten the opportunity to ask him a few questions. See what he had to say!
1. Tell me about the brand and what inspired you to become a fashion designer?
As a Nigerian born designer my collections take a lot from my early life experiences. Washington Roberts is a fashion label that infuses inspiration from African culture with a contemporary New York sensibility. While using geometric shapes and precise tailoring Washington Roberts not only adds a touch of culture but also a sense of effortlessness to women. Washington Roberts is proudly made in New York. My Journey started with my grandmother, she was an amazing seamstress. At a young age I knew that an acute attention to detail and a steady hand could turn pieces of fabric into beautiful works of wearable art. I decided I wanted to be a Chemical engineer. Years after I, realized that my true passion was putting my hand to needle and crafting beautiful clothing for others to wear. I began in the industry working with stylist Kithe Brewster and Showroom Seven. From there I went on to work at Paris 68, which housed J.Lindeberg, William Rast under the creative direction of Johan and Marcella Lindeberg. Then went on to design for American Rag, Tory Burch, Victoria Secret, Vera Wang, and Adrienne Vittadini. All that led to me starting my own label, I wanted to design clothes that have my own point of view.
2. What would you say your inspiration for your design come from?
With every collection, I like to challenge myself while introducing new element to the collection, like new fabrics or new techniques etc. I pull inspiration from all over Africa, to narrate a modern story of the continent while still staying true to my design aesthetic. As an African, it’s important to narrate our own story through whatever medium we can to change narrative of what Africa is. Luckily for me the continent is massive with beautiful cultures and inspiration.
3. What is one of the biggest lessons you have learned so far while creating your clothing line?
Wow! There’s so many lessons, but above all is learning to trust my path even though sometimes, I don’t know exactly where I am going. I just keep putting one foot in front of the other.
4. Where can people find your collection? Where can they purchase it?
The collection is available at Avivere.com
We are having a pop up at the end of the month, June 30th. Which is quarterly.
Photo Credit: Washington Roberts & Nigerian Reporter