Menswear designer on the rise

ARA fashion graduate Judd Cargin talks to Metropol’s Daniella Judge about success, and working as the menswear designer at
popular brand I Love Ugly.

Judd reveals, “I always knew I wanted to work in a creative field, and my initial drive was to become a sneaker designer”. Studying fashion design was the path to get there. However, as many students find, once he started studying his passion went in a new direction, and he fell in love with clothing design.

What continues to be the best part of being a fashion designer, for Judd (above left), is witnessing the transformation of an idea into tangible reality.

“Seeing samples delivered is, and always will be, the most exciting part of the job,” he says. Seeing people on the street wearing clothes he has designed is also something he says he will never get over.

Much of his inspiration comes from nature. “I love earthy tones such as browns, greens, and beiges.

“I am also really inspired by vintage clothing items, and putting my own twist on them. Recently I have been heavily inspired by vintage knitwear and workwear. Currently my favourite brands (other than I Love Ugly) are Aimé Leon Dore, Kith, and Reese Cooper,” Judd explains.

While studying in Christchurch for his degree in Fashion Technology and Design, Judd interned at Swanndri, and I Love Ugly. During the latter, he was offered the role of menswear designer, and seized the opportunity, despite having one more year left of study.

No small feat, Judd finished his degree via distance while learning the ropes of his new role.

“Balancing study and work wasn’t easy, and it was a lot of hard work to stay focused.”

To stay on track, he stuck to a strict plan to work during the week days, and many times had to sacrifice his weekends and evenings to get what he needed done.
Judd is an inspirational example of emerging talent, a young designer carving a path in an industry brimming with excitement. Keep an eye out for him and his designs.

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