We had the good fortune of connecting with Team VENIA and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Team VENIA, can you share a quote or affirmation with us?
“If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.” -African Proverb Fashion celebrates the self, and inspires individuals to explore or enhance their own lives. What we love about this quote is that even though fashion can please the individual, it ultimately brings together like-minded people and allows them to share a space together. To us, Fashion is Community as much as it is Self-expression. In addition, the fashion industry is not a one-man-band. Many people must pull their efforts together to make even something as simple as a t-shirt. At VENIA, our Team is our core. We understand the value of growing a single potentiality, as well as nourishing a strong team mindset. Our unique team is comprised of designers, operators, scientists and engineers. Together, we influence a unique product that is meticulously designed and sustainably manufactured.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
Founded in Downtown Los Angeles, VENIA was created to be a graceful rebellion dedicated to Clothing Evolution. Every unique piece manifests itself as an Armor of self-expression that empowers the individual. VENIA outfits modern warriors with sleek, futuristic, and dystopian clothing designed to function well in the city and the wilderness. Inspired by stories of journeys, collections are developed with transitional details that combine intricate cuts with transformative elements that are meant to take the wearer from point to point along their voyage. Utilitarian details, wear-tested fits, and color-fasted dyes are only some of the many requirements a garment must have before entering its final stages. VENIA is founded on innovative design and ethical manufacturing. We have always prided ourselves in the exploration of concepts as a product. Fair labor and sustainable materials are at the core of product and material development. A blend of cutting-edge technologies from a variety of industries are employed to streamline and enhance our design process. We believe that technology can work hand in hand with traditional craftsmanship and that in doing so, we are able to innovate unique products that would otherwise not be possible. Even though we draft all our patterns and render fits digitally, there is still a lot of hand draping and assembly that goes into our design process. Our journey has been a scenic route full of twists and turns. We don’t really take shortcuts, and in fact, there’s an inside joke that “if it’s not complicated, it’s not VENIA.” In reality, the joke is a testament to the intention of our process. When we first began, we were but one of a few dark conceptual designers in Los Angeles, and finding our niche was tricky. In addition, our designs have been stolen, we ran heavy initial risks with experimentation, and entering into wholesale had its challenges too. What began as a passion project to showcase ethically made-to-order specialty pieces, evolved into a unique lifestyle brand that shows internationally and is carried in specialty boutiques around the world. We still operate as an independent, privately-owned business, and though it has its challenges, we are able to keep control over our presentation and maintain a high level of quality. For that, we are incredibly thankful to all the retailers and collectors who have supported us over the years. We are very excited to continue developing new experiences and collections.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
(Sadly this is a Post-COVID-19 List as many of our favorites have shut down…) Food/Coffee: No Ghost Bears coffeeshop, Hatch Yakitori Bar, Hama Sushi, Maru Coffee, Messob Ethiopian Restaurant, Carousel Armenain/Lebanese, Go get em Tiger, Poke from the Little Tokyo Market Nature: Escondido hike in Malibu, Strawberry Peak San Gabriel Mountains, Point Dume Malibu, Debs Park Monterry Hills Playtime: Dover Street Market, Jeffery Dietch Gallery, Hive Gallery, Tase Gallery, Owl Bureau, Grand Central Market, Culver City Platform, H Lorenzo Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
We would love to shoutout Dawn Marie Forsyth, Mixed-media artist, Professor and the former Chairwoman at FIDM where the founders went to college. Even before the conception of the brand, she listened, mentored and encouraged us. She provided the location for our first photoshoot and film, and connected us with some of our longtime collaborators and friends. VENIA would not be the same without her! Instagram: @dafomastudios
Clothing: VENIA Collection Photographer: Cameron Noel Dunbar Model Woman: Christina Wen Model Men: Jonathan Genziano