Last week I had the pleasure of meeting head designer Ashley Zygmunt at a trunk show for her line, ZAMRIE. This gorgeous collection of incredibly fitting blouses is the perfect mix of practicality and high style all wrapped in to one incredibly chic top.
Born and raised in the Chicago area, Ashley pursued her interest in fashion at Purdue University in the Apparel Design and Technology program, and then went on to study in Florence and Hong Kong. She’s worked under big name brands like Zac Posen and Li & Fung USA in New York, but knew she wanted more. After a last minute decision to apply to the Chicago Fashion Incubator, she was accepted, and hasn’t looked back since.
Read on as I ask her a few questions about how she got her start, her designs and what’s coming next for ZAMRIE.
SCS: What does ZAMRIE mean; where did you get your name?
AZ: I wanted to use my name but not my actual name, Ashley Marie Zygmunt. So I decided to take my middle name switch the first two letters and put a Z in front of it to signify my last name. So that is how the name ZAMRIE came about.
SCS: Where did you find your design inspiration for your current collection?
AZ: I love the 70's for sure. So I pulled inspiration from 70's poolside chic, which could translate into a working wardrobe as well. I think each piece can be worn with platforms, flats, heels, or even cowboy boots.
SCS: What's your favorite piece in your current collection?
AZ: For S/S 2011, it is my Nina Swing Vest. I have been obsessed with cowboy boots since highschool and think it goes perfectly with ripped jeans (which is a trend for Spring 2011), a white tee, and cowboy boots. The vest adds a city chic perspective to any look. I also love the Florence in the sheer chiffon. It’s a perfect blend of femininity and class, while still being fashion forward.
SCS: What's next for ZAMRIE?
AZ: A lot, but for Fall 2011, we are expanding by not only doing blouses but also some jackets and vests. I am really excited about the opportunity the season will have. We also have our own exclusive ZAMRIE prints that I’m so excited to share.
SCS: What would you tell other designers looking to create their own collections?
AZ: Work your butt off, do the grunt work well, NEVER complain to your boss and you will be noticed.