Cindy Quach, 2013 BFA Fashion Design, is about more than just designing beautiful clothes, she’s also about giving back. Cindy Quach took time out of her busy schedule that consists of launching a jewelry line, working on a couture line and a tutoring business, to talk with Fashion School Daily about what life has been like for her after graduation. Her admiration of the Earth has inspired her to lead a vegan lifestyle; which expands into her designs. Her animal friendly design process is just one of the things that Cindy is doing to make the world a better place.
What Cindy Quach had to say was inspirational, proving she’s more than just a talented designer, she’s also an exceptionally caring person. Find out how Cindy finds time to give back during her jam packed days and the advice she has to give to current students.
Fashion School Daily: Tell us about what you have been doing since graduation.
Cindy Quach: My days have been filled since graduation. I started a tutoring business a few years ago that I work at part-time. Recently, I expanded my business by opening up a new company, Pascal Learning Center, LLC ,in San Jose, CA so that I could help more kids at a time. I also opened up a new fashion company, Cindy Quach, LLC, in Los Altos, CA. My company has two stories. The first story is my flagship store. The second story is my company’s sewing studio. Building my couture brand, Cindy Quach, has been challenging but also a lot of fun.
FSD: Tell us about your company.
CQ: Cindy Quach is my creative outlet. I want to push the proverbial fashion envelope. My goal is that when you see Cindy Quach, you stop for a moment, and maybe you feel a bit uncomfortable, but after that first moment, you fall in love with it for everything that it is just as much as everything that it isn’t. If you don’t understand this yet, don’t worry, you soon will.
FSD: What is an average day like for you at work?
CQ: I wake up bright and early (at 6:30am), do some type of exercise (it gets the creative juices flowing), eat a small breakfast (a couple pieces of fruit), and it’s off to work. I hang a calendar in my workspace that has everything that I’m to do for each day. I find that a calendar is an integral part of completing tasks, deadlines, deadlines, deadlines! After reviewing what I’m to do for the day, I get to work. Some days this might mean that I’m flying out the door to buy some fabric that I need, on others it might mean that I’m beading some intricate design, and yet on others, this might mean that I’m sewing all day. I work until 4pm in the studio at my company. Then, I head to the learning center to teach the kids. I teach my students until 8pm.
FSD: What do you love about your job?
CQ: I love everything about it! But especially, I love the fact that I am my own boss. I love that it feels like there are no limits to what I can do (in a fashion sense). I’m constantly looking for where the conventional limits are set, so that I can break them. I love that I can take a bunch of things that separately might seem ordinary, and put them together to create something extraordinary! I love beauty and I see it everywhere in everything (well almost everything). But I guess what I love most is that the only person that limits me is me.
FSD: Where have you found inspiration lately?
CQ: I find inspiration in everything. Everything that I see inspires me in some way (whether I’m conscious of it or not). For my latest collection, I escaped the city and went out into nature to get more connected with the world and all of her inhabitants. Recently, I have become aware of the plight that every non-human animal has been suffering from at the hands of our species. The animals have been used for food, clothing, testing of drugs, etc…when it is completely unnecessary and downright cruel. Once I understood what has been going on, I decided that I would no longer contribute. I decided to live a vegan lifestyle, therefore, everything that I create is done without using non-human animals. This has been a paramount inspiration for me. It isn’t just about not using animals, but about being more connected with the earth and all of its inhabitants. If I had to sum up in one word what the inspiration for my latest collection is, that word is earth.
FSD: What are you interests outside of fashion?
CQ: So many, but how about three? I am most interested in what part I should play in order to make a worthy contribution to the world and everything in it. I know that it is fashion that I am enamored with, so I hope that it will be through fashion that I am able to have the most positive impact on the world. I’m interested in motivation. I find motivation to be at the core of achievement and I often times wonder about how the things I do, or perhaps think about, affect my motivation. I’m very interested in the experiences of others. Through their experiences, I find a deeper understanding of the world.
FSD: What is your favorite memory from your time at the School of Fashion?
CQ: As much as I enjoyed the sleep deprived nights behind the sewing machine or trying to make sure that the hem on a dress what just right, those are not my fondest memories (shocking, I know). My fondest memories are of coming into class and seeing all my peers. I enjoyed having talks with my classmates about an idea that they had for a particular garment or how they were going to overcome a problem that they had been struggling with for a few days. It was the struggle that I remember most fondly though, but not the struggle that I faced alone, but rather, the struggle that we faced as a class and overcame as a class.
FSD: What are your goals in the next 3 years?
CQ: In 2015, I will launch my new Couture Bridal line along with a new Ready to Wear line. They both will be showcased in a charity fashion show that will be hosted next year. Following this, my goal is to apply to the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund in 2017 and expand my brand nationally.
FSD: What advice would you give to students?
CQ: Follow your dreams, whatever they are. It doesn’t matter if others believe in you or not. What matters is that you believe in yourself. Never stop dreaming.