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Sudan Archives wears CANDICE CUOCO in Teen Vogue

Musician/Vocalist Sudan Archives dazzled in CANDICE CUOCO’s beaded fringe MARCHESA bodysuit and extended-sleeve bolero at Arizona’s Form Festival. The look drew raves, including a Street Style highlight in Teen Vogue. Sudan Archives’ sophomore EP, Sink, is on sale now.

At the one-of-a-kind Form Festival held in Arcosanti, Arizona, several talented artists chose to express themselves not only through their music but through their outfits. The women in particular stood out in looks that transformed their performances to a higher level of art. Luminaries including Charli XCX and Sudan Archives took the stage in incredible looks you’ll want to copy this all summer festival season long.

Caroline Griswold, Teen Vogue

CANDICE CUOCO Featured in California Apparel News

Designer Candice Cuoco Sees Inspiration in Her Move to Los Angeles
By Dorothy Crouch


In the past, Candice Cuoco’s connection to Los Angeles was when she traveled down from her native Bay Area eight times a year, spending two weeks in the city during each visit to source materials. Now a place she calls home, Los Angeles provides a lot more than valuable manufacturing and fabric sourcing.


It’s a place that offers many opportunities but only to those designers who are willing to work hard. “Anything that is worthwhile takes a minute,” she said. “It’s an inviting thing, but it’s a scary thing that brings people in and pushes them out. It’s a great place to be if you’re okay with that feeling.”


While some designers might allow this type of environment to affect their work negatively, Cuoco uses the city’s challenges to fuel her determination and finds inspiration in the styles of Los Angeles that contrast with her own.


“My work and my brand are dark, but it’s very romantic. In LA, everything is really cool. Streetwear is massive here and it’s really hip. It lent that hand into my work,” she explained. “It was something to breathe a little bit of different kind of life into my designs.”


Cuoco’s designs were seen last March at Art Hearts Fashion presentations at The MacArthur near downtown Los Angeles. Her Belladonna collection was infused with her signature dark romance in long, flowing dresses; black leather pieces; studded embellishments; avant-garde details and an overall noir feel, capped by large black hats draped with black veils.


A fourth-place finalist on the 14th season of “Project Runway,” Cuoco recently competed in the sixth installment of “Project Runway All Stars.”


Now that Candice Cuoco has evolved into a brand, the woman behind the name has accepted her role and is ready to expand. This September, she will launch a ready-to-wear collection with NYX cosmetics founder Toni Ko. Named LilyJamesLA, the collection will offer lower retail price points for consumers starting at approximately $80 for apparel and $125 for shoes.


In addition to this new venture, Cuoco is working on her own ready-to-wear line for fans of her couture collections who would love to own a piece but are unable to afford a $650 pair of black velvet–and–chiffon pants or $1,600 leather-and-fur coats.

With a tentative Summer 2018 launch, she envisions the line as having pieces from T-shirts that wholesale for $15 to a higher priced vegan-leather jacket wholesaling at $75—an effort to reach admirers of her brand who might not share her love of genuine hide. The challenge lies in finding ways to reduce cost without compromising the integrity that Cuoco feels has been the foundation upon which her brand has been built.


“Instead of thinking, ‘How do I dumb myself down?’ which isn’t the right way of thinking, it’s, ‘How do I make this effortless and wearable and obtainable but still have that brand identity stamped into it?’” she said. “If I want it for this price point, maybe we’ll take a bit of fullness out or rework the design to make it right for the customer and the label.”


While she is between design studios and working out of her home in South Pasadena, Calif., the designer made the decision to shift from her in-house operation to an outside manufacturer—NANA Atelier—located in downtown Los Angeles.


“The woman who owns it worked for Parsons [School of Design]. It’s a little hidden gem. For so long, I looked for manufacturers and you get people who say, ‘Send us your samples and then we can talk.’ No, I want to talk now! That was a struggle for me, too. It’s like letting your babies out,” Cuoco said.


In addition to two ready-to-wear collections, new manufacturing partnerships and moving into a yet-to-be-revealed design space, Cuoco is also partnering with her boyfriend, Yuri Moreira, on a sock subscription service named Dolla Sock Club. During this project, the designer will manage the creative aspects but with no attachment to her brand identity.


“Nothing is enough, but isn’t that how all designers should be?” she asked. “If it was enough, I guess we would stop. If we’re good, then that would be it. What is there to look forward to? Why move on? You’re fully satisfied. You’re full. I hope I never come to that point.”

Candice Featured in Palm Springs Life Magazine

Leatherized Love: Project Runway finalist Candice Cuoco will bring “her most beautiful pieces” to Fashion Week El Paseo.
By Julie Pendray

Candice Cuoco has zoomed to stardom with her black leather corsets, transparent gowns, skimpy bodysuits, and artful dresses, wowing daring fashionistas in Paris, New York, and London.


As a sequel to her recent runway show at New York Fashion Week, the 2015 Project Runway finalist will bring what she calls “her most beautiful pieces” to Fashion Week El Paseo, which runs March 17–24 in Palm Desert. The event is billed at the biggest consumer fashion show on the West Coast.


Cuoco, whose fans went wild when she took the stage in New York, says women relate to her expression of both strength and vulnerability. “The main feedback I get from them is that when they wear something I’ve designed, they feel sexy in a powerful way,” she says. “It’s like you’re going to recognize ‘her’ presence when ‘she’ walks into the room.”


Black is Cuoco’s favorite color. “That way, it’s all about the woman,” she says. “My pieces show a woman with strength. You’re dressed to conquer. When someone first sees you, they see who you are by what you’re dressed in. So, what do you want the world to think of you?”


The designer believes “things are shifting now for women.” She is unapologetic for her wild leather statements. “Why is it not ok for a woman to be loud or sexual?”


Leather, in fact, is her comfort zone. “I’ve been around it my whole life. My dad built motorcycles when I was growing up, and my uncle was a Hell’s Angel. I tried the sweet, subtle side of design and using color. It just doesn’t work for me. I don’t think I come from a white-picket-fence kind of place.”


Cuoco, 29, grew up in Oakland and is now based in Los Angeles. In her early 20s, influenced by the work of Edgar Allen Poe, she embraced what she calls her “melancholy soul.”


Black is Candice Cuoco’s favorite color.


“Everyone sees black as a dark, sad place, but I think people who come from a sad, dark place are more interesting,” she says. “Something about a woman who has been torn apart and put herself back together is beautiful. It’s ok to feel all the emotions. I get more from life when I dwell in those places. I don’t live there, though. There’s romance to what I do.” One Project Runway judge in 2015 described her work as “dreamy and editorial,” Cuoco says she doesn’t know how to “not tell a story.”


Last year, Cuoco, who studied at the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising in San Francisco, opened a 2,300-square-foot showroom and studio in downtown L.A. She says designing hasn’t made her rich, yet she would “rather do this and be hungry than do something else and be unhappy. I’ve struggled my whole life. I’m never quite happy. I’ve learned to celebrate that about myself.”


Runway shows, she adds, are an exercise in “blood, sweat, and tears.” Sometimes she and her team go without sleep to finish a piece the day of the show. “Maybe three or four people will buy that garment,” she notes. “I compare that with a marriage. I fight with it. It turns me on. I starve with it. If you’re gonna go through hell and back, you might as well do it with something you love.”

CANDICE CUOCO Partners with Epson for New Collection

Project Runway’s CANDICE CUOCO will debut her new AW18 collection, BELLADONNA, at two exclusive NYFW runway events on February 6th and 9th.


Inspired by BELLADONNA’s dual definitions of “beautiful woman” and “poisonous flower”, the collection epitomizes Candice’s mastery of marrying the beautifully dark and deeply romantic. The dramatic, high-waist silhouettes feature blacks and reds with pops of floral and chrome– at once both passionate and dangerous, much like the fierce women CANDICE CUOCO celebrates.


“Women can get their heart broken but mend it together to come back fierce and impassioned. You don’t know what love is until you have truly been crushed, slightly broken, died and survived.”

– Candice Cuoco


BELLADONNA marks the first time Candice has designed her own custom bespoke textiles. Working with EPSON America’s cutting-edge printing technology, Candice has been able to unleash her full artistic vision, creating prints that are uniquely innovative and intensely personal, and further blurring the lines between art and fashion.


Candice will preview the collection at EPSON America’s New York Fashion Week event on February 6th. The EPSON show features innovative designers from around the world as they debut prints that celebrate their unique backgrounds and cultures. EPSON hand-picked Candice to represent American fashion design, and her designs reflect both her California upbringing and Italian heritage.


The full BELLADONNA collection will premiere at Art Hearts Fashion’s NYFW event on February 10.  Held at the same Angel Orensanz synagogue where Alexander McQueen made his New York debut, the venue holds deep meaning for Candice, who has long considered McQueen an inspiration and muse. To honor his legacy, an empty seat will be held in his honor in Candice’s front row.


Candice Cuoco shot to fame in 2015 as a finalist on Lifetime TV’s Project Runway, where she quickly became known for her edgy designs and exceptional skill with leather. Since Project Runway, Candice’s career has skyrocketed, with clients around the world and throughout the entertainment industry seeking out her dark and romantic designs.


EPSON dye-sublimation technology is a digital replacement for traditional screen printing. Designed using the latest advancements in performance imaging, the EPSON SureColor F-Series is the new benchmark in high-performance garment imaging.


ART HEARTS FASHION is a leading platform for designers and artists to showcase their collections in a contemporary fashion week setting. Founded in 2011, AHF has grown to become a top platform in the art & fashion community, with events held coast to coast as a national platform for designers.

CANDICE CUOCO on America’s Next Top Model

Famed stylist Nichola Formichetti selected not one, but two of Candice’s garments to showcase in the season premiere of America’s Next Top Model! The avant “garden” couture shoot featured two pieces from CANDICE CUOCO’s Bad Butterfly collection – our gorgeous CHARA wrap gown and stunning ARIA Skirt!