Designer Focus: AJ JAVIER

Turn your maximalist dreams into reality!
by Jasmine Gagarin

AJ Aldeguer Javier is a Manila-based Ilonggo fashion designer who is known for his maximalist style partnered with designs that are both experimental and innovative. He is currently a student at the Fashion Institute of the Philippines in Ortigas. His designs have grazed newspapers, magazines, and digital fashion websites. His current PPE-inspired ensemble was featured in STAIL.PH’s HOME issue with STAIL Icon Andrea Brillantes on the cover.

 

 

 

 

Get to know AJ more through this exclusive interview with STAIL.PH

 

 

How are you handling the current COVID situation?

I try to stay productive by making sketches, learning new patterns, and taking courses online that would enhance my knowledge in the fashion industry.

 

What were you doing the day before quarantine has been declared?ย 

I was mostly focused on my graduation collection but I was also busy with clients because of the prom season and setting up my upcoming atelier.

 

How are you spending time in quarantine and how do you think this pandemic has changed your psyche?

Sketching, learning new things, and spending more time with my sisters made my stressed pre-COVID mind more relaxed and excited.

 

What is your favorite part about being a fashion designer?

You make dreams come true and you give hope for others to also dream.ย 

 

 

 

 

What is fashion for AJ Javier?

Fashion is used to project, aspire, express, and redesign ourselves.

 

What are your inspirations while creating your designs?

Anything and everything, I often draw inspiration from the most mundane details and incorporating it with something relevant yet timeless.

 

What has been your inspiration in creating your design made for this issue?

Itโ€™s inspired by the PPE gown (Personal protective equipment) but I made it couture since I wanted to send a message of hope and looking at life differently. I want people to see this pandemic as a time for us to improve on ourselves and to see the rainbow after the storm.

 

 

The Fashion industry will be more woke, therefore, making it less frivolous and more sensitive.

 

 

How would you describe your designs?

I am a maximalist designer who displays whimsicality and elegance with avant-garde undertones.ย 

 

How do you want to be remembered?

This is very ambitious but I want to be remembered as a Filipino haute couture designer who brought and showcased his heritage to the international stage.ย 

 

For you, what is the future of fashion?

The Fashion industry will be more woke, therefore, making it less frivolous and more sensitive.

 

What are you most excited about after this pandemic? What are you looking forward to?

Iโ€™m excited to be able to get back to work because that would mean work for my sewers as well.

 

We are continuously normalizing conversations on mental health. Whatโ€™s your stand on this topic?

My stand is that mental health should be recognized and given more attention especially because a lot of my generation is experiencing mental health concerns. We should be able to uplift and make those who are experiencing these concerns feel that we are with them every step of the way.

 

Whatโ€™s your message to people who are experiencing such illnesses especially at this current trying time?

My message is that in fashion you should never be afraid to express yourself and the same goes for those who are experiencing such illnesses do not be afraid to speak up about what youโ€™re going through because there will always be people who will understand and help you get through it.

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