CDG - The Costume Designer

Fall 2018

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14 The Costume Designer Fall 2018 By Anna Wyckoff JXB Clothing W hen Janie Bryant, Emmy-winning Costume Designer and powerhouse, was still designing Mad Men, she had recently completed her book, The Fashion File, and was traveling the country speaking about style. Bryant says, "I always like to do a Q&A after every event because I think it's so important. People are so curious about what a Costume Designer is—the job seems so esoteric. You see the light go on in people's eyes after you've explained it and they will never look at the job the same again." Bryant loved those conversations and connecting with the woman on the street. Often she fielded questions about Joan, whose curvy silhouette had a universal appeal. Everyone, it seemed, wanted to have clothes that suited them, as well as Joan's and were as becoming and figure flattering. Bryant realized that onscreen there was a dearth of normal-size ladies, and offscreen there were few offerings for zaftig women. Often, shapely women had to make do with garments constructed in cheap fabrics in matronly cuts. After Mad Men, Bryant designed several capsule collections for differ- ent manufacturers such as Banana Republic, which were smashing successes. However, thinking the market was oversaturated, she wasn't com- pelled to create her own collection. Although Bryant got her start in fashion design, she credits Costume Design with helping her to really understand the human body. "I feel so lucky to have the experience of working with men, women, and children of all shapes, sizes, and propor- tion—of really understanding the range of human physicality." Then she had a realization. "I thought every woman deserves to feel beautiful. And that really was what inspired me to design this collection. It was kind of incredible." With that her clothing line, JXB, was born. "Our priority is to create flattering garments for the curvy girl," explains Bryant, "so she feels good and embraces her shape. That really is the force behind the collection." The line launched November 28 on Following a seasonless model, new essentials and statement pieces will be released every six to eight weeks. Catering to an audience sizes 12-24, it focuses on beautiful materials with Bryant's characteristic sophistication and impeccable fit. Finally, Bryant has the perfect answer for everyone wanting to look as chic as Joan.

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