Chris Diaz has been in the Fashion Industry for some time now and has already made a mark and signature from his timeless and romantic pieces. Chris Diaz won my heart when I saw his Spring/Summer Collection 2011. Chic, stylish, romantic, well-made and speaks very well who is his target.

I was so excited when I got the feedback from Chris Diaz that he is good with the interview I am planning to do and will be featuring him.   I was with my good friend Yen Salamoding. Together we met Chris for coffee in UCC Cafe in the mode Greenbelt 5. He was waiting for us and I was a little embarrassed since I was late a couple of minutes. A little bit awkward at first how we introduced each other but sooner became comfortable as our discussion progressed.

Thank you very much Chris for giving me a chance to share your brilliant mind and talent to everyone. Thank you for your warm welcome and time that you have spared for us. I know I would want to feature soon for your new PFW Collection. CONGRATULATIONS in advance!!!
Tell us something about yourself and how you started your career in Fashion.

Chris said that his family has the inclination with the ARTS. His father loves to draw and brother is a Musician. Since he was young, he knew that he wanted to be a Fashion Designer and this is true with his first taste in Fashion when he designed a Prom Dress for his friend. Another eventful experience was when his talent save him flunking his Biology class during his 2nd Year in Highschool, he designed 10 piece collection for his professor. Of course his family wanted for him to take Architecture for college, however to compromise since he is not fond of Math opted to take Interior Design which he has a degree on.

Chris never had formal training with Fashion Designing, what helped him was his job after High School as an artist/ embroidery of couture fabrics for companies that caters to international clients in European countries and brands like Armani.

He also worked for a year for an Interior Design firm, sometimes even today practices the craft. His latest ID project was a 4 bedroom house.

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What launched your career in Fashion?

Chris joined the Young Designers Competition in 2002. Amongst the hundreds of designers 10 semi-finalist where chosen and he was one of them including Ivarluski Aseron, Mich Dulce, James Reyes and LZ Punzalan. The theme was “Peace of Cloth” and they have to come up with 6 piece collection. He made hand-painted pieces, faux furs etc.

Chris also joined Mercedes Benz Malaysian International Fashion Award (MIFA) together with good friend Jerome Salayas Ang.


What was your style as an Interior Designer that helped fine tune your “aesthetic” as a Fashion Designer?

Chris said, "As an Interior Designer, my designs where Practical, “Homey”, Eclectic yet tasteful. As a Fashion Designer my aesthetic is Realistic, approachable, easy-breezy and nothing complicated."

Is there any difference between the 2 crafts?

For Chris, Interior Design is somewhat restricted. In terms of client budget and their personal needs. In Fashion Design you can go as “crazy” as you wanted to be depending on your inspiration.


Your international Fashion Designer inspirations are Chanel, Karl Lagerfeld, Vera Wang, Alberta Ferreti, Prada and Tom Ford. Locally, which design aesthetic and approach do you look up to?

He said he is inspired by Rajo Laurel, because of the way he handles his wide-range businesses.

Let us talk about your Spring/Summer Collection 2011. What was your inspiration behind it?

The documentary “Gray Gardens.” was the inspiration of Chris' collection. The story is about a mother,  Edith Bouvier Beale and her daughter "Little Edie"  This is a reverse rags to riches story, They faced some great financial hardships and because of their eclectic lifestyle their story became infamous.
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What were the differences of your 2010 collection from your 2011 collection?

He mentioned that his 2010 collection was very dramatic as for 2011 colors are abundant and in wide-array.


What materials did you use for your S/S 2011 Collection?

"I have used satin, cotton silk, taffeta, knit, jersey for my swimwear, lace."


How long did it take you to finish everything?

"I started doing the collection August 2010 and completed everything September 2010." (October 2010 was his solo show in PFW S/S 2011. Click on the photos below for more of S/S 2011 Collection.) 
PFW Holiday Collection is fast approaching, are you showing this year?

"Yes."


What can we expect from this new collection? What are your inspirations?

Chis said that it will be different from his 2011 S/S Collection. It will still be true to his design aesthetic being a Romantic Designer. (It took a while before he finally gave the ultimate clincher of his collection...) "My design inspiration is Medieval”


Can you share to us the world of Philippine Fashion Week. How do a designer gets a chance to showcase their collection?

He said that normally a designer can be referred or apply to get a chance to join PFW. Sharing his experience, his first show was in 2006 wherein he was referred. He submitted his credentials after which Chris have received a phone call informing him that he got the slot and that they have a meeting for the Fashion Week. It was also this time when Liz Uy took notice of his collection and featured me on Preview Magazine as an “Fashion Designer to watch out for.”


Does it cost the designer financially to produce and be in PFW?

"Certainly it does, like you have to pull-out your team to concentrate on PFW instead of finishing any designs for the clients. There will be transportation to and from the venue. Food allowance is a must for everybody. Good thing about it, everything pays-off eventually."


Are there a minimum number of designs per designer/show?

Chris provided insights, First there is the 10 piece collection and you would be part of a group show.  A 30-piece collection, and you can showcase with 6 other designers, then there is a Solo Show that consist of 45 or more piece in the collection.


Can you describe a typical day as a Fashion Designer.

He said he is not a morning person. Once he gets up around 9-10am, he will go to his shop and his team and inspect the garments he is working with. Check my emails for any new clients/ appointment.
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What is your stress-buster?

Chris usually stays at home, if not he is doing a little “retail-therapy.”


Do you make designs for yourself?

"Yes I do", sometimes he make suits/ blazer but most of the times I really enjoy shopping for my clothing needs, Chris shares.


What is your Fashion Forecast in the next 5 years?

Chris said that most of the time, he never looks in the future for inspirations but vintage fashion is what he draws visions from.

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What can we expect from Chris Diaz in the future?

Chris said he will be venturing in ladies shoes aside from the jewelries he have created for his S/S 2011 collection. He is also an in-house designer for Myth here in Greenbelt 5 where you can buy what’s left of his S/S 2011 collection and new pieces he have designed for them.
Any words for anyone who plans to take Fashion Designing and be as successful as you are?

Chris shared, Be realistic with your approach. Believe in yourself, and your talent. Faith with God. Patience, your time in the industry would come, Always remember that at the end of the day, “Your design would speak for you.”


How can we get in touch with you?

"You can visit my multiply.com account. I am featuring here my designs for weddings." (i.e. Wedding Gowns, Entourage’s gown, Groom’s Suit)

Business Number: 8732070
Shop: 9 Amber St., Phase 1, Pillar Village, Las Piñas City, Metro Manila
Site: chrisdiazdesigns.multiply.com

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Again Chris, "Thank you very much!!!" For this wonderful opportunity. By sharing your gift, your talent to the world, not just me but I am sure millions and millions will adore you and your creations. ;)






Credits:
Yen Salamoding: Photographs during the interview
Ron Ramiro: Photographs during PFW



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