Joseph Altuzarra '05 Reflects in WSJ on Being Named CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund Winner

Wall Street Journal: Altuzarra sees star rising - with a few boosts

March 28, 2012

Joseph Altuzarra [’05] is riding the juggernaut that often lands him in conversations about the country's most promising and influential fashion designers.

He's not sure how he got to this point - with his own company, title of Council of Fashion Designers of America/Vogue Fashion Fund winner and status as a must-have fashion show ticket - but he's not asking too many questions: "It all kind of just happened. It took a life of its own," he says. "By the time I decided I was into the idea, it was already happening."

Fashion, he says, has been a part of his life as long as he can remember, since boyhood in Paris. It started through a passion for drawing, which eventually became mostly fashion drawing.

"I don't think there was a single moment when I got into fashion. When you live in Paris, and fashion is such a point of pride for the French, it's always around and you're very much exposed to it from an early age. It was always something I knew about and really liked," he says.

Since coming to the U.S., first to attend Swarthmore College in Pennsylvania and then to New York to intern for Marc Jacobs, the 28-year-old has been on the move. He knows the Jacobs gig was a lucky break, especially since he's not sure he was qualified for it. But he worked hard, he says, and was like a sponge soaking up everything he could and using that to grow his talent. From there, he worked for Proenza Schouler and then Riccardo Tisci at Givenchy. ...

The $300,000 CFDA prize he received last year didn't hurt, either. He spent it on production and a new office, but it's the mentorship he received from different forces in the industry that he found most valuable, he says.  ...

Note: This story also appeared in Newsday, The Miami Herald, Bloomberg BusinessWeek, Times of India, Belleville News-Democrat (Belleville, Ill.,) The Arizona Republic (Phoenix, Ariz.), BruneiNews.net (Manama, Bahrain), Daytona Beach News-Journal (Florida), Charlotte Observer (North Carolina), Deseret News (Salt Lake City, Utah), NewsOK.com, The Boston Globe, The Washington Times, The Olympian (Olympia, Wash.), CBSNews, JakartaNews.net, Odd Onion, Xfinity.comcast.net, WorldNewsInShort.com, TopNewsToday.org, LiquidPromote.com, Yahoo.com, I4U.com (Lewes, Del.), TheNewsHeadline.com, and FashionIndustryNetwork.com.

Read a profile of Joseph Altuzarra '05  in The Bulletin.