Designer Spotlight: Cody Ross

I like to think of fashion as composed of tiny bits of singular art. That's why I love to discover as many creations & designers as possible...
Meet Cody Ross. A designer with fresh ideas that make their way to the public portrayed by his brand, named Priestess NYC. He was so kind as to send me an email and agreed to let me ask some questions. His designs are pretty&cool. Let's see what stands behind these garments...

Tell us about yourself & how did you start.

I'm originally from Dallas, Texas... I attended the London School of Economics and for many years worked as a hedge-fund analyst in Shanghai, Dallas and NYC. Spent all my free-time looking at fashion mags, dressing/styling cool girls and finally (fed up with repression!) quit my job and launched the label 3 seasons ago.
Fashion has also been a central interest of mine and sketching, sewing and draping an active hobby that I can now do full time! I got my technical skills from part-time courses at Central St. Martins and lots of do-it-yourself stuff.
I've been passionate about fashion since I can remember! When I was a kid my mom's closet was swelling with fun clothes... In particular, she had Braniff stewardess uniforms that were designed by Emilio Pucci and those wild patterns and colorful prints definitely captivated me! Anything with bold, florescent prints and outlandish geometrics gets my attention and my mom had tons of that... I do womenswear now because I really love it and it's all about pursuing your dream!

What is the concept behind Priestess NYC?

I like to think of it as "a contemporary take on the spirit of vintage-punk combined with futurist influences". It's really about elegant street mix and nuanced styling that flows from Judy and Jane Jetson dresses, lots of late-80's Vivienne Westwood references and bombastic futurist themes... hence, lots of metallic finishes and sheen representing speed, energy and modernism.
The new stuff (SS09) incorporates a bit of "glam-goth and a bit of futurism/punk". Items include finely constructed jumpsuits made of delicate leather, soft-cotton jersey rompers with dynamic monochrome finishes/spikes and amazing high-waist (and mini-) pencil skirts that are perfect for mixing and layering.

Does your personal style influence your work/creations? How?
A little. I just make clothes for my "ideal girl".

Where does your inspiration come from?
It's a very broad range of influences: I look to the streets of NYC, Paris, Shanghai etc. as well as the prominent Fashion Houses and strive to unite the looks into a single garment or outfit. Inspiration comes from lots of references, periods, people, cultures, art and all those things inform the design process.
Specifically, I find inspiration in the collections of Rei Kawkabo, Raf Simmons, Jeremy Scott, Junya Watanabe and I look to the coolest publications/blogs (like Sweet Fancy Treat) for cool content and ideas!

How do you promote or freelance yourself in the business?
I talk to editors and buyers and trend-spotters a lot and go to cool fashion parties. That gives me a platform to project the brand and raise visibility.

Do you have any favourite fashion designer/icon?
Jeremy Scott rules! Bernhard Willhelm is amazing... and I LOVE Kokon ToZai (KTZ by Marjan Pejoski)!!

What would be a daily must in your schedule?
I read the Financial Times .. . and re-read/gaze at i-D Magazine all day long!

What key elements should the ideal FW 08 wardrobe include?
For FW08, a must-have is the Priestess NYC Alternative Crop Blazer in deep purple. For SS09 a key element are high-waist denim skirts and suspender-jumpsuits!

What do you think it would be the next "it" fashion item?
High-end "textile jewelry": silk bangles and necklaces with metallic-finishes!

What is your greatest dream or wish?
Universal happiness on Planet Earth!

Always... be honest... and humble. a power-luster.

Thanks Cody for your answers! What I would like to add is that despite being part of a relatively new brand, his creations have been worn by celebrities and super-models including Tyra Banks, Juliette Lewis, Bjork and Danity Kane. Also, Cody's stuff has been featured in Vogue,, i-D and Dazed and Confused. Phew! I know you're curious, now go check out his site.

aaand, there's more! If you work in a design field and want to be featured in a Designer Spotlight kind of post, all you have to do is email me. Spread the love!

Sweet treats,

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