Each week we will be highlighting one of the fabulous emerging designers from Phoenix Fashion Week 2016. This week, meet Isy Obi, a fashion designer from the Cayman Islands who’s brand Isy B. Design is described as “feel good luxury” and is a collection of modern dresses made with smart fabrics for a jet set life.
First fashion job: Helping to gather fabric remnants into the remnant bins in my mother’s fashion studio when I was 5!
When did you know you had a passion for fashion: I’ve always loved fashion, my mother was a designer and I grew up around it so I guess you could say it’s in my blood. Though I initially chose to pursue a career in finance, the pull of fashion has always been strong for me, I still loved to be involved in the world of fashion by designing my own clothes and working occasionally as a model looking forward to the day that I could focus on bringing my dream of my own fashion studio to life.
Person who has impacted your life the most: My mother has been the biggest influence in my life as an example of strength, courage and audacity. She was unusual in that she was both a a professional scientist and a fashion designer, and she worked hard, and dealt with many obstacles to maintain that balance between her intellectual side and her creative side. She remains one of the few people I know who has been able to do so successfully.
Your biggest fashion accomplishment in your eyes: Creating the Feel Good Fashion event in the Cayman Islands this year. It was my first solo runway show, (having shown at Fashion weeks in Cayman and London), and I wanted to use the event to make a positive contribution to the Cayman Islands community and so I used the sold-out show as a fundraiser for a local charity, which runs a program to provide nutritious lunches to school children in Cayman who would otherwise be unable to afford it. I feel blessed to have been able to use my first show to help others and look forward to doing the same in future shows.
The biggest obstacle you have overcome: The biggest obstacles I have had to overcome has been conquering my own fears and doubts and deciding that I would be the author of my life by achieving the goals I have set myself.
A Designer who inspires you: Coco Chanel has been my biggest inspiration. She believed that in clothing (as in life), there is no luxury without comfort and she understood how to create looks for women that were beautiful and luxurious yet revolutionary in their comfort and this informs everything I design.
Favorite quote: “When you come to the edge of all that you know, you must believe one of two things: either there will be ground to stand on, or you will be given wings to fly.” ― O.R. Melling, The Summer King
Advice to someone pursuing a career in fashion as a designer: Believe in yourself
Favorite piece you have ever designed: A couture gown I designed for a client for the 2016 Grammys. She was magnificent!
For more information about Isy B. Design, visit isybdesign.com.
If you would like to attend Phoenix Fashion Week 2016, you can purchase tickets here: bit.ly/PHXFWFABAZ. Use promo code FABAZ for $20 gift card good towards any seat (not applicable towards standing room tickets).