By Ashley Charlton Griffin
San Diego entrepreneurial powerhouse Stacey Blanchet exudes gusto, ingenuity and focus to be a cut above the competition in the fashion industry. As owner and Visionary Designer of Blanchet Designs, she has proven over the past two years that she certainly possesses those characteristics. With her professional partner Janaki Ravinutala, Blanchet Designs creates contemporary classics and contributes to charities within the community.
I was introduced to the world of Blanchet Designs this summer by way of a simple advertisement seeking a complimentary design for the upcoming Oscar ceremony. I admire the art of fashion; and I was intrigued by the fact that a designer was taking an unconventional approach towards finding inspiration for such a huge event. After researching the fashion house, its chief visionary, and an introductory email, I was added to the Blanchet Designs email list. Most impressive about Blanchet’s method to her work, is that she keeps her supporters abreast of her amazing journey in the world of fashion through candid, behind-the-scene updates on both the professional achievements of herself and her design house. Ever the attentive person, Blanchet took a few moments from her whirlwind schedule this month to chat with me and, in her opinion, respond to “some of the best questions [she’s] been asked so far.”
Ashley Charlton Griffin: You are a skilled designer–was this a lifelong aspiration or something that developed over time?
Stacey Blanchet: I would not call myself a skilled designer–I am a visionary designer. I have no training in sewing or pattern making. I have a team of people for that. My desire to be a designer came from being a product of the 80’s. Duran Duran and Joan Collins of Dynasty were my idols. I started in my late teens learning about European Designers as they were my ideal.
ACG: Although based in San Diego (CA), your concepts have a “worldly feel.” What influences your style (i.e. trip overseas, fellow designers, shape of the human body)?
SB: I am a very structured person. I do not like a mess in clothing. My clothes are always tailored and fitted. I like statement pieces with a little bit of an edge.
I am drawn to faraway places for influence and fantasy. Very early on my favorite designers were Armani and Azzadina Alaia. I have always admired their clothing and most important business skills. They make clothing that you can see yourself wearing and looking great in. Their runway shows are for people and not show.