From her fierce style, to her unshakable tenacity, to her buoyant personality, she is a walking embodiment of her fashion philosophy.
The journey to get here has not been easy. Born and raised in Northern California, Candice overcame a difficult upbringing that left her with no choice but to fight to live and thrive, not just survive. But despite the early disadvantages, Candice has refused to let her story be defined by the obstacles she’s faced. Instead she has fought her way through the darkest of times with sheer strength, determination, and an unwavering refusal to back down.
From having her daughter at 17, to founding her first fashion label at just 25 years old, Candice has proven time and time again that her life and her career will be run on her own terms, guidelines, morals, and values, and that she won’t give up until she’s satisfied her harshest critic– herself.
Before turning to fashion, Candice pursued a variety of 9 – 5 jobs, including training as a nurse, but found herself depressed in all of them. A mother first and foremost, Candice credits her daughter with helping her to re-evaluate her career goals. “She is going to look up to me. All women do, they look to their mothers for what it is like to be a woman and what it means. At every single job I had, I was so miserable – I left miserable, I came home miserable, and so she only saw me miserable. That is not what life is supposed to be. Not for my daughter, not for me, or for any woman.”
A conversation with her sister helped Candice find her way. “She reminded me that, since I was a little girl, I loved to make stuff. I was my happiest creating.”
“That was a turning point for me in my life and career. I realized that creating was what I wanted to do for the rest of my life, and nothing else was going to fill that void – no man, no woman, no job or night out, no fling, first love or last love. The only forever that makes sense to me is my kids and my career.”
With that, Candice enrolled at the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising (FIDM) in San Francisco, and the rest was history. Since leaving FIDM, Candice has found rapid success. In just 3 years, she has already shown at New York, London, Paris and Los Angeles Fashion Weeks, become a finalist on Project Runway, appeared in every major fashion magazine, and dressed numerous celebrity clients.
It’s a remarkable turnaround for a woman who has had to fight for everything she has accomplished, every step of the way. But it’s that fight that, in the end, defines Candice Cuoco.
“It’s like being in a very dedicated and committed relationship with yourself and your life. Screw boundaries and boxes that society likes to place women in. Forget being softer and more polite because it’s some persons ideal version of what a ‘real woman’ is supposed to behave like. Misbehave, raise eyebrows, MAKE AND BREAK YOUR OWN RULES, be proud of your own mistakes. Love every scar like it’s a kiss from the moon. Let no person make you believe you are less, because you are more. AND NEVER BE SORRY for being more than most can handle. We were never meant to be handled, we were meant to live, love, and be loved. I believe in the strength and courage of women. I am woman, and I am fucking proud.”
CANDICE CUOCO has appeared on-schedule at Mercedes Benz New York Fashion Week, as well as at London, Paris and Los Angeles Fashion Weeks. Her work has also been featured in Vogue, ELLE, Marie Claire, and Glamour magazines, and was on the cover of Diablo magazine. In 2016, Candice was invited to host and emcee FIDM Debut, a multi-night runway show celebrating FIDM graduates.
In 2015 Candice was a finalist on the 14th season of Project Runway, during which she won multiple challenges and was regularly selected as a top designer. The San Francisco Fashion Awards have honored Candice as “Designer of the Year”, “Best Emerging Designer”, and “Most Stylish”. Her work has been worn by numerous celebrities, including collaborations with Lil Kim, Vanessa Simmons and Eve Salvail.
In 2017, CANDICE CUOCO opened a 2,300 square foot showroom/studio space in downtown Los Angeles. The store was launched in parternship with Toni Ko, founder of NYX Cosmetics and Perverse Sunglasses.
Candice continues to exhibit sophisticated provocation through an intellectual fashion ethos.