Our Graduate Fashion Week judges series continues! Here we caught up with jewellery designer Tomasz Donocik to find out more about his career and hopes for the future of fashion.
How did you get involved in the fashion industry?
Although I am not a fashion designer but a fine jewellery designer, my first pieces blurred the boundaries between fashion and jewellery. At the Royal College of Art (RCA) my work was about bridging the two worlds and that’s also when I got to know YKK.
Who/what inspires you?
I have always been interested in storytelling and my inspiration comes from literature, cinema, painting, but also from the vibrant and constantly evolving surroundings of London. I also draw inspiration from my travels around the world such as Japan, America, France, and North Africa. My two most recent collections, The Electric Night collection, and the Stellar collection were based on the sci-fi cult movie Blade Runner, and the work of American artist, Frank Stella respectively.
Could you tell me a bit more about your current role and responsibilities?
Although my core profession is jewellery design – I design my collections and many bespoke pieces – but as a business owner I also have to take care of all the aspects of my business. One key responsibility I have is the making and overseeing the production of the jewellery pieces, but I am also involved in the wholesale, marketing, PR and sales aspects of my brand.
How did your relationship with YKK begin?
I received a special award at the International Talent Support (ITS) competition in 2007 not long after my graduation from the RCA for reinventing the slider on the zipper. The YKK president was so impressed and thrilled that he asked me to design a whole range of zipper sliders for YKK.
What are you looking forward to most about Graduate Fashion Week?
I look forward to discovering fresh talents and ideas, to be surprised by uncensored and free-reign creativity. Disruption is what I love to see.
If you had one piece of advice for fashion students, what would it be?
To make it in the fashion industry you need perseverance, tenacity – and a little bit of naivety! It’s an incredibly rewarding profession, and you must think positively that it will happen for you. Work hard – it’s survival of the fittest.
To find out more information visit https://www.tomaszdonocik.com/
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