We asked Fashion Designer, Key PhantaCee questions about her journey! Being a boss takes work and hustle, read all about hers below:
What inspired the name of your clothing line?
Originally the name wasn’t meant to be a clothing brand. Vivre La Vie Pleinement (vivʀ- la- vi- plɛnmɑ̃) in translation means Live Life Fully and what inspired that phrase was the fact that I was tired of life just happening to me. I was at a place in my life where I wanted to experience more and break free from the things that were holding me back such as fear, people’s validations and self doubt. The phrase was more of a personal motto for me at first, it was what I said to myself to stay focused and motivated. Translating it to french just made it sound more special. Then long behold I chose to flip that phrase into a clothing brand and now we have VLVP for short. I knew that I wasn’t the only one on this journey of rediscovering my life’s purpose. I figured what better way to spread this message than through fashion.
As a creative, it’s always necessary to mentally recharge. How do you do this for yourself and what other strategies keep you going?
When I hit creators block I hit it hard! There would be times where my brain can’t figure out what creative content to post on VLVP’s social media let alone what new design to make. When I reach those peaks I literally stop working and go indulge in some of my favorite hobbies. My first love was dancing and singing/ writing songs so sometimes I go back to that. I would just throw some music on and just start freestyle dancing or give my own fake concert! It’s important to have other things you love doing outside of your career because it allows you to spread yourself a bit and not become so overwhelmed with doing the same thing all day and night. Although I work for myself I still give myself a day or two off, if not completely I may just do the most minimal task like engage on social media or document my sales for the week.
Where do you see your clothing brand in the next 5 years?
In the next five years I see VLVP being one of the largest ecommerce stores. I do want to have a chain of locations in popular markets as well. As for VLVP’s impact on the world I want people to love the fashion we provide but the message we are spreading even more. Within five years I want VLVP to go beyond fashion and actually be hands on with helping people through art, community service, sharing other people’s stories like how I am sharing mine now and much more!
It seems like so much goes into operating a clothing line. We’re sure you could teach a course! Do you have any words of advice for aspiring designers looking to get where you are?
My advice to aspiring designers and entrepreneurs in general would be if no one is giving you the answers, seek them on your own. One thing I had to understand is that no one is obligated to help me and that is totally fine. It took me countless hours, days and years of research and reading on my own to figure out what works best for me and my business. I don’t ever get mad at the fact that someone isn’t helping me because thankfully I have a “I’ll figure it out” mentality. Don’t get me wrong, asking for help is okay but don't put all your eggs in one basket; seek knowledge from different sources not just one.
Are there any designers today that you feel have influenced your creative style?
I would say Virgil Abloh has influenced my creative style along with Rihanna. Both of them just display fashion in such an artistic way. Abloh knows how to make simple look edgy and luxurious and he knows how to do a lot without doing too much. Rihanna on the other hand takes presenting fashion to a whole other level with how she incorporates both dance and music to display her work, take the Savage X Fenty fashion shows for example. Being that I am a huge fan of all three types of art I can’t help but to love how she combines the three so effortlessly.
Give us one Fun Fact about yourself:
Not too many people know that originally when I was in my preteen years I wanted to be a chef when I grew up. I wanted to follow in my father’s footsteps so I went to a vocational high school to take up culinary arts. The gag is most of my friends were in the fashion design shop so I actually would skip class to hang down there most of my senior year. Today I kind of regret not taking fashion to begin with. However looking at the bright side I do know how to throw down in the kitchen!