Ever thought about studying to become a Fashion Stylist? Or maybe want to have your own business but don’t know where to start? We’ve got some good news! We got the chance to interview one of our amazing JCI Institute Fashion Business Graduate Merielle Hilario. We’re asking her everything from what made her get into Fashion to her time at JCI Institute, Merielle is telling us all about her experience in the Fashion Business & Creative Arts Program. 

Merielle Hilario JCI.jpg 2

What inspired you to pursue a career in Fashion? Was it something you always wanted to do?

I’ve always been interested in fashion. Growing up with my older brother really had an impact on my style. I was drawn to both men’s and women’s clothing. As I got older I found that street fashion was the perfect in between for me. However, I noticed that the streetwear industry was mainly dominated by males, and that the women in that industry seemed to fall into the same label as “insta baddie” or “hypebae.” Due to this, I want to be able to represent real authentic women in the streetwear scene by becoming a name in this industry. I plan on owning my own streetwear brand that teaches girls how to feel empowered within themselves rather than through their Instagram likes and followers.

What year did you graduate from the Fashion Business Program at JCI Institute? What was your experience with the program?

I graduated with a diploma in Fashion Business & Creative Arts at JCI in July 2019. Throughout my course, I was able to explore and learn about the many different roles in the fashion industry. I absolutely loved working on photoshoots! I had the opportunity to meet other stylists, makeup artists, and photographers through the program. I ended the school year with my own segment at our final fashion show.

Since completing the program, what have you been working on? 

Since graduation, Jared Lim (JCI Fashion Graduate) and I have been working at Holt Renfrew. My experience with the company so far has been wonderful. Outside of work, I am still working on photoshoots as my creative outlet.

What have been some of your favorite jobs and or people to work with? 

Through JCI’s monthly mixers, I got the pleasure to meet and work with Daphane Phanouvong. She is an incredibly talented hairstylist! I always message her whenever I have opportunities because I love working with her.

Merielle Hilario

Hair by Daphane @hairby.daphane

You participated in last year’s Vancity Street, what was your role in the event? Tell us about it!

Vancity Street is a gathering for all of Vancouver’s underground creatives. Jared Lim and I had the opportunity to help Heather, owner of The Basement Van,  style a runway segment. The three of us developed 14 looks for the fashion show that all served up the runway! The whole night was full of good people and good energy.

How would you say your Fashion education has helped you prepare for the work you are doing now? 

The Fashion Business & Creative Arts program at JCI has really shaped my perspective on how I see everything. Because of my education, it is easy for me to be able to understand how everything flows in the retail industry and definitely comes in handy when I am at work!

Merielle Hilario JCI