As Toronto Fashion Night quickly approaches, StyleDemocracy will be profiling personalities, and brands associated with the event. It gives us great pleasure to introduce you to RISKANDY a Toronto Fashion Night design team based in Toronto. RisKandy was created in Januarary 2013 by two fun loving Torontonian women who were tired of seeing the uninspired, gaudy accessories that were everywhere.
The brand was created out of the belief that wrist wear should be edgy and creative, while remaining affordable.
Each piece is handcrafted using all natural gemstones luxurious Czech crystals and brilliant charms.
Earlier last week we had the opportunity to sit down with Shantel Thomas and Anisha Ladha the brains behind RisKandy and catch up with them before Toronto Fashion Night on March 21st.
SD: Did you plan to get into designing and how did you begin?
R: Neither of us planned on getting into designing, the idea of RisKandy grew organically.
The idea of making custom beaded bracelets dawned on us when they began noticing the trend of Shamballa bracelets in the fashion and music industry. Even though everyone was wearing and we saw them all over Twitter, Facebook and Instagram, these bracelets were difficult to put on and would not work well with both business attire and casual attire. So we decided to figure out a way to make the Shamballa bracelet a better bracelet. And with that idea in our mind RisKandy was born.
SD: What does it take to start your own label and make it as an independent designer?
R: It begins with a creative idea, putting in all your available resources into the idea, utilizing the talents of others (e.g. social media advisor, website design), and perseverance because you will not reach the accolades you want over night; it’s a slow but steady process, with a lot of ups and downs.
SD: What was the most difficult thing you had to overcome to get where you are today?
R: Realizing that the way we used to live and the things we used to do are no longer as important as reaching our goal. We partied less, worked more (living the 9-5 and then working on the dream).
SD: When people see your designs, what do you think their impression is?
R: They are instantaneously drawn to our wrist candy (RisKandy). They see a unique design that is classic and edgy at the same time. They see a product that they are able to transition from professional life to night life.
SD: Where do you want your brand/yourself to go from here?
R: We would like to expand to other avenues of fashion beyond wrist and neckwear. We want to make RisKandy a recognizable lifestyle brand, that incorporates fashion nightlife, and music.
SD: Is there a growing gap between what designers are making and what regular men are willing to wear? Is there a growing disconnect between menswear designers and men?
R: No, we feel that designers have now realized that people want to be more fashion forward in their everyday choices. This is now forcing Designers to developed more diversity within their lines to cater to the needs of people. We no longer want to hear that we can one wear one type cut or colour for a season. The people want more.
SD: What has been the most exciting milestones for her Riskandy?
Launching our website www.riskandy.com is first, it was a lot of hard work and time spent developing a site that would truly showcase what RisKandy is about fashion, nightlife, music, and life in Toronto. Being a part of the Canadian Fashion Forecast is another; it was the first fashion show RisKandy was a part of. It gave us the opportunity to see our designs on stage, being wone by models down a runway. It also allowed us to network with other local designers and is the reason we are a part of Evintra today.