The Story of a Young Jamaican Fashion Designer

Young, talented fashion designer, Ayanna Dixon, is looking to the future with her ASD Clothing designs.

Cognizant of the many challenges she will face to get her creations on the international platform she shared her vision nonetheless.

“I definitely have dreams of taking my business to the international market. But at the moment I am only doing custom clothes so I haven’t been doing mass production and targeting the overseas market,” she said.

Dixon, who has been operating ASD for five years now, previously walked the fashion industry runway as a Pulse model as well as working backstage at fashion shows.

She’s a past student of Edna Manley College of the Visual and Performing Arts, where she pursued fashion design, and later went to New York for further studies. Dixon also landed notable internships at Donna Karan International and Marchesa. She finally returned home to Jamaica where her entrepreneurship journey began to dress the catwalk.

Following a nine-month stint at Jamaica Observer, Dixon entered Mission Catwalk– a reality television series aimed at discovering and developing fashion designers. She placed second and got the opportunity to showcase her designs at Miami Fashion Week.

Looking ahead, she is now weighing the pros and cons of various challenges to get to where she wants– exporting a world-class product.

“There are a lot of different things, it’s like you know– will I have a constant source of the product?  Will I have the costing as it relates to the US dollar sliding?”

She added that there are also other things to worry about, like consistency in supplies and scaling her business.

“The manufacturers that I work with, I have to consider if they are consistently able to give me the same quality products all the time. There are a lot of nuts and bolts you need to have secured to make sure everything runs smoothly,” she said.

“Raw materials are always such a problem for fashion designers. You have a limited number of quality fabric stores here (Jamaica) and prices are most times so high. So there are many different factors as to why the industry isn’t growing as fast as it could,” Dixon added.

Although she has identified most of the challenges, she remains resolute and faithful to her vision for ASD and the Jamaican fashion industry.

Her hope is that the day will come when Jamaica is the fashion mecca of the Caribbean.

 

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Cecelia Campbell- Livingston - Contributor
Cecelia Campbell-Livingston has over 20 years of journalism experience. Her career started as a writer for the now defunct Jamaica Record, before moving on to The Jamaica Herald/XNews. Later, she served as Coordinator for the teen publication, Teen Herald. In 2008 she joined the staff of the Jamaica Observer as an entertainment writer. Since December 2014, she has been the Clarendon correspondent for the Jamaica Gleaner.

The views expressed by contributors do not necessarily reflect the views of JAMPRO

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