RENEE COOPER, (EDDIE BOWER)
FIELD: FASHION DESIGN HOME: SEATTLE ZODIAC: GEMINI
A. | How do you currently define yourself?
I am very free spirited and motivated by change and excitement.
A. | What is your work routine? What does your job entail?
I am a designer for Eddie Bower. I am in the world of women’s active wear where we work with performance fabrics and bringing technology into apparel.
A. | What do you do outside our your work routine?
It is important to be stimulated. Sometimes this is meditation, once a week it is Pilates, and sometimes it is a nice hike or walk in a park.
A. | What are the biggest challenges you have overcome (personally and professionally)?
The biggest challenge is always coming up with something new and innovative for the market. Making sure you have all of the pieces come together in a way that is going create the best product.
A. | What do you think are the most important traits in your industry?
Timing is everything. Sometimes we want to put these great ideas that we have into the market immediately and often times it takes a while so you have to be patient. You don’t want to put something in the market when it isn’t ready for that trend.
You need to be very resilient. You can’t take things personally. You have to be able to love what you’re doing but not be so attached that you’re not willing to modify it to make it right for the market.
A. | What is unique about Seattle’s Fashion Industry?
We’ve been around since at least the 70’s. Our roots are really in casual and performance wear. We have all the beautiful outdoors here so there is that functional aesthetic that really comes through.
We are right here on the hub of trade with Asia and I think we need to have a little more international flare in our trend. Of course we are also an international technology hub so it would be nice to see more of that here.
There used to be a Seattle Fashion Week produced by John Rosen back in the 90’s at the Paramont Theatre and it featured every local designer. It was an over the top show with probably 2,000 people who attended. It was a real show stopper. It had a really Capitol Hill vibe to it, it was very outlandish and showed a variety of designers—some of them less polished than others.
A. | What would you like to see more of in Seattle's Fashion industry?
I would like to see more trend. I think we need to have more international flare in style here. I am really inspired by what’s happening in Asia right now and we should open up to that.
A. | How do you define success?
Loving what you do every day. If you do that you are a success.
A. | How does oppression and privilege influence people’s success in your field?
These words are not as impactful anymore. It used to be that everyone had to have certain types of products to have stature and I feel like that no longer exists anymore – it is now how people piece things together and where they find them.
A. | What is your number one industry advice?
Keep the passion burning. There will be a lot of people who may tell you that what you’re trying to do may not work and they may be discouraging but if you have a vision stay with it, see it through, and continue that passion.