Victoria Hunter’s passion for fashion and her open mindedness is what fuels her success.
The best students are those who understand what it’s like to be a teacher. And the best teachers are those who understand what it’s like to be a student. Fashion teacher Victoria Hunter fits into both of these categories. Former student turned educator, Victoria’s talent is connecting with her students and understanding what they are going through.
Her reward is that she loves what she is doing, which is evident through her actions. She is on the path she was meant to find and excels at her job. Victoria exemplifies what it means to have a passion for fashion.
Victoria’s interest in the fashion field started when she was young. Growing up in England, she would shop with her mom but rarely found exactly what she wanted. The idea she was envisioning in her head was never in the stores. Her grandmother was a seamstress and teacher who could look at someone and make a paper pattern that would fit them. She even made Victoria’s wedding dress!
However, this family link was not what inspired her to be a teacher or even go into fashion. In fact, Victoria wasn’t even sure she wanted to pursue a fashion career until her late 30s, which is when she started attending FIDM (Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising) in Los Angeles. She loved being in fashion school and exceled at her projects. When other students asked for assistance or inspiration, Victoria was always there to lend a helping hand. She saw where her classmates would lose points on their assignments, and realized that other people understood and benefited from the process she used instead of the lack of structure with the materials provided. Victoria said that her helping her peers “prompted me to write a fashion textbook, which led to my position as a teacher.”
Now that Victoria is in her fashion teacher career, she helps her students figure out what drives them, and reminds them that not all of their ideas will pan out. Designers who expect perfection the first time are those who get stuck. This is a lesson Victoria has learned and thus can teach it first-hand. Having experience with fashion design has trained Victoria’s mind to love her bad ideas and to ignore the negative thoughts she may have during the process. She allows the ideas to sit in the back of her mind and gives them time to “do its magic.”
Victoria also lets students choose the direction they want to follow while designing. She supplies them with concepts and blueprints for framework, but ultimately lets them find their own methods and processes. She loves working with those who have a relaxed and open mind, but also appreciates those who pay attention to detail. On the other hand, she finds the most difficult students to be those in panic mode who are stressed out and make little mistakes. She finds it challenging to enforce rules and deadlines that will limit the students reaching their full potential.
With that in mind, Victoria knows she has to be fair and firm, so doesn’t offer project extensions. If Victoria could change anything in the fashion field, she would want it to be kinder those new to the field. She believes that the industry needs to consolidate and collaborate in order to make this
Victoria says that her fundamental principles of style have changed little over the years. She has become more connected to the current trends in fashion, but doesn’t want to be totally influenced by them or another designer’s work. She believes as long as she stays true to herself and her style that she will be successful.
That said, Victoria still has icons whose work she admires. This season she loves the work of Alexander McQueen, AMBUSH, R13, Laquan Smith and others. She takes inspiration from many of their pieces. Victoria is very excited to see styles from the past being reinterpreted today. She likes and finds creativity in most of the previous eras (except the 1970s J). The perfect designing recipe for her is a combination of so many elements – 50% quirky, 40% utilitarian and 10% of something new and trendy.
All in all, Victoria Hunter was born for the fashion field. From being named Fashion Design Student of the Year in school to being a published author, a teacher at FIDM to now creating and teaching courses at Design Your Line Fashion Lab, she has always known what to do and how to help others. Victoria continues to stay in this field because of how rewarding it is, knowing that she has helped a student land a job in the fashion world. She also loves knowing that she is able to help students comprehend new concepts that were once a struggle. Victoria does what she loves and loves what she does. She is clearly passionate about everything fashion!
About Sweet Fashion Interview
BooksandLooks is a 13-year-old Creative, N.J., phenom who has been working on The Sweetest Gigs (kids work program created by staffing agency, Recruiting for Good) for the last two years. She is currently leading creative writing gig; Fashion Loves Freedom (she reviews fashion, and writes sweet fashion interviews). Starting in 2023, Recruiting for Good will start funding 2024 Kids Design Tomorrow scholarships to offset the cost of hiring Victoria Hunter.