About the Designers' Studio
The Designers' Studio, initiated in 2015, has evolved into a professional development vehicle vastly different from traditional sample rooms and apparel training programs in that it includes practical advice from entrepreneurs with experts in the fashion industry, seasoned designers, patternmakers and sewists (seamstress who is passionate about sewing).
The Designers' Studio was started by Julian Asion in 2015. Asion who after more than four decades of collaborating with designers to bring their visions to fruition, was poised to give back to the field by inspiring a new generation of emerging fabric artisans and designers in Harlem. Born in Cuba and a New Yorker by choice, Julian brought a new level of energy and expertise to the SoHarlem team through the depth and breadth of his experience working in the fashion industry, theater and high society. Asion has mastered the art of being the first hands that make an idea become a reality. He was first pattern maker for Jason Wu and Narciso Rodriquez and worked with Isabel Toledo on outfits for First Lady Michele Obama, The Duchess of Alba, and the cast of the Broadway production of “After Midnight.” His credits include Calvin Klein Fall 2010 Collection; Isabel Toledo’s Spring/Summer Project for the Swiss Embassy; and pattern making for the designs of Cynthia Steffe and Zac Posen, featured in NYC Fashion Week, the Academy Awards and the Zac Posen Paris retrospective.
Julian donated his archives to SoHarlem that include patterns and models spanning his years in the industry that are available to the public.
The Designers' Studio, has evolved into a professional development vehicle vastly different from traditional programs because it includes practical advice from experts in the industry.
Designers’ Studio offers is open to emerging local and global designers in need of:
1. Studio time to develop a design, obtain advise on design, fabrics and patterns and access to cutting tables.
2. Sample production and light manufacturing through SoHarlem’s in-house seamstress
3. Space for meetings to showcase their collection to potential and currents buyers.
Katherine Phillips, Creative Director of the Designers' Studio and Founder of KP Indie. She has devoted her career to mentoring emerging designers in the practical and detailed steps for bringing new fashion collections to market.
Katherine’s experience spans twenty-five years with major industry labels that include: French Connection, Nicole Farhi, Nordstrom, Talbots, and Bon Marche, Paris. Like many new market leaders in fashion, she advocates sustainability in all aspects of fashion creation. Katherine has studied at the University of Paris/Sorbonne and graduated from Columbia University, New York, NY.
Since joining SoHarlem she has developed a team of expert seamstresses, patternmakers, fabric illustrators and embroiderers. Katherine has opened a second location in New Delhi, India where she has spent more than two decades cultivating and leading a group of artisans who create beautiful fabrics and apparel embellishments. From this location she also directs a fabric sourcing facility and the manufacturing of apparel for some of America’s top specialty retailers of women’s apparel.
Interested in SoHarlem Designers' Studio?
Please call 212 222 2792 or send us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org describing your needs.
Julian with Arthur McGee,
the iconic fashion designer, and Sandra Ross during a break for the production of Negro Ensemble's The Great MacDaddy in 1977 in the Virgin Islands.
Mother daughter team Olivia Smashum and Alex Unthank established Blue Olive and their collection captures the spirit of an endless summer--flirty silhouettes, sheer and breezy fabrics, and sophisticated colors. The Blue Olive collection of endless possibilities with seperats that transition seamlessly from day to night.
Katerine Phillips, Creative Director and Founder, KP Indie
with Oliva Smashum, President and Alex Unthank, Creative Director Blue Olive Resort.
Master Seamstress & Patternmaker, Vicenta Zeigler
Vicenta in the background with her protege Sandra Alvarez. Vicente brings more than three decades of experience to the craft of apparel making.
Surrounded by the world of fabrics in New Delhi, India.
KP Indie & Blue Olive
An example of how our designers' complement each others creations. Model wearing KP Indie embroider tunic and Blue Olive sheer pants.