Meet Lucian Matis – Fashion Designer

Photo by Peter Nguyen
Photo by Peter Nguyen
Lucian Matis, Project Runway Canada celeb and fashion darling, grew up in his mother’s tailor shop in Romania and began designing at an early age – his first clients were his teachers. Matis moved to Toronto in 1999, studied fashion design at Ryerson University, and started in his own company in 2007. His talent has been recognized by some of Canada’s most prestigious awards including The Fur Council of Canada Award, Le Chateau’s Menswear Competition Award, and the Alfred Sung Award for Great Design Talent.

Lucian Matis has a reputation for artistic flair and creativity. He has three collections: the ‘Lucian Matis’ runway collection, which is exclusive and made-to-order; Daphne by Lucian Matis, which is sold on the Shopping Channel; and MATIS by Lucian Matis, an affordable, versatile collection.

by Lucian Matis

“I love the job mainly because of its diversity. I love every element… there’s photography, makeup, hair, textiles, illustration. I create my own fabrics so there’s a lot of painting as well. It’s very exciting.

“Of course, I love fashion. I grew up in it, and I was encouraged by my teachers to become a fashion designer.

“The glamour is probably – and I’m being generous – about five per cent. It’s a lot of hard work. Behind-the-scenes is really intense labour and not as glamorous as it seems from the outside. But that’s why we put on shows – to bring that 15 minutes of glamour to the thousands of hours of work that go into designing the garments.

“It’s a very demanding job, and I don’t have a life outside of fashion… which doesn’t upset me because I love what I do.

“The travel is really inspiring – as long as it’s not too extreme. In the last little while I went from the Orient to Europe to back here to Europe again to New York.

“I enjoy interacting with clients. I listen to them a lot so I really get influenced by them.

“And, it’s a people job because I’m dealing with stylists, magazines and media. We do not have a budget like big fashion houses to do a lot of big campaigns and advertising so what we do is focus on creating amazing images that people want to publish. The last campaign we did was picked up by so many bloggers because it was so beautiful and magical. We really work hard at creating an amazing image for our brand and then people are just drawn to it and they want to use it – and I love doing that too.”

What is a fashion designer?

Jason Hargrove/Flickr
Think a career as a fashion designer is all about glamour? Think again! Being a designer is a highly demanding, 24-hours-a-day, seven-days-a-week job. As a designer, you have your hands in every step, from sketching the designs, overseeing pattern making, choosing fabric, buttons and trim, and managing the production process.

Published on October 11, 2012
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