Eyeglass lovers, meet Derek Desierto of the Derek Cardigan Collection at Clearly Contacts. We sat down with him to chat with him about his inspirations and his brand.
VCB: Tell us a little bit about yourself.
Hey, my name is Derek. I’m an eyeglass designer and stylist for ClearlyContacts. I have a background in design and animation. Ever since I was a kid I’ve always been very creative and interested in fashion and illustration. Both continue to be a passion and influence in my work.
VCB: Has being an eyeglass designer been something you’ve always wanted to do?
I always intended to do something creative with my life whether it was in art or design. I didn’t always know it would be eyewear, but I am absolutely thrilled to be in the industry because I have always been drawn to glasses as a fashion statement. Glasses are part of my own look so I take great pride in designing them for others. I love seeing people walking down the street in a pair from my collection. Though I would never approach them, I still get very excited to see someone wearing Derek Cardigans!
VCB: What does ‘Derek Cardigan’ mean to you?
I attended private school as a kid, which meant wearing a uniform. My older cousin attended the same school years earlier when a cardigan was part of the uniform. I liked the vintage look and managed to borrow my cousin’s cardigan to bring it back. This quickly earned me the nick name Derek Cardigan. The name has grown beyond just the cardigan into glasses, math symbols, and neckties. It’s also fitting because the line itself is vintage inspired. It always comes back to who I imagine Derek Cardigan, the person, to be.
VCB: How did the opportunity with Clearly Contacts come about for you?
I was working in an admin position when someone from the company discovered my blog and learned I had a background in design and illustration. They asked me to design a mini collection for ClearlyContacts.ca, which ended up doing very well. That’s how it all began. I’m currently working on my third Derek Cardigan collection, which will be coming out in the fall. It’ll be a little different from what people are used to with new special details that I think people will enjoy.
Sneak Peek of the upcoming Derek Cardigan collection.
VCB: Beyond designing eyewear, do you have any other ambitions in fashion or otherwise?
I’m still involved in illustration. You can check out my tumblr which features some of my work and what inspires me on a daily basis. I’m also writing and illustrating my first children’s book right now. It’s about a very unique little boy who walks to the beat of his own drum.
VCB: We at Vancity Buzz love your designs! What inspires you?
Thanks! I’m very much inspired by fashion from the 50’s and 60’s. I watch a lot of old movies and find material from past eras is the inspiration behind a lot of my work. Also, people with great individual style like Chloe Sevigny or Pascal Grob really inspire me. Visiting fashion forward cities like Paris or Tokyo are always stimulating because people seem to be more interested in fashion as an expression of individuality. I appreciate that.