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Nov 15, 2010

Art Institute Designer Feature - Roman & Ramirez

Jose Ramirez and Kenneth Roman bonded over their love for fashion and have been inseparable ever since. Citing Lady Gaga as their muse, the duo structured, geometric pieces (sold under the Roman & Ramirez moniker) are designed for those who are not afraid to experiment with their looks.

How did you get started as a designer?

Jose: I'm in fashion for the purpose of art. I love finding new ways to recreate a shape or form on the body. I have so many artistic visions in my head, and I feel clothing is the best way to express them. I see the human body as a canvas and clothing as paint.

Kenneth: I’m in fashion because I think I’m good at it. Designing is so much fun, but intimidating at the same time. Of course, there are certain aspects of design that I don’t enjoy but, overall, I wouldn’t change my career choice for anything else.

Tell us about your style and where you draw your influence from?

Our style is inspired by the 1960s Space Age fashion era. We love the modern, futuristic couture look. We focus more on appearance rather than functionality.

What has being a designer taught you?

Being a designer taught us that people are either going to hate it or love it. You just have to stick to what you believe in.

What is on your inspiration board?

On our inspiration board we have a lot of things – number one being a picture of Lady Gaga. We also have images of beautiful modern buildings and leather swatches.

What was the inspiration for this collection?

The collection is an achromatic presentation of structured and tailor garments that are definitely not for the body conscious. We designed the collection with the absence of a woman's sexuality in mind, and we played with the idea of nonexistent sexuality.

Can you tell me a bit about the fabrics you used?

In order to obtain a structure look we used fabrics that would hold shape: Leather, vinyl, silk taffeta, ultra suede, and buckram.

Who are your style icons?

Lady Gaga

How do you feel art, fashion, and music influence each other?

We feel fashion is a form of art. If you combine it with music and art you get a great performance.

Where can people purchase your designs?

La Maison de Fashion on Melrose.

Interview by Nikki Neil, Photos courtesy of Art Institute

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