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Fashion Talk

Frederic Joncas

Creative Director
Label - Judith & Charles

We are currently working on our first fall men’s capsule

Based in Montreal, Judith & Charles is a Canadian company run by its eponymous husband-and-wife founders. Each Judith & Charles collection reflects a fusion of both feminine and masculine sensibilities. As the label designs and manufactures 80 per cent of its collection locally, Judith & Charles has full control over its production and is able to further enhance its strongest assets: fit and quality. In a chat with Fibre2Fashion, Creative Director Frederic Joncas talks about the latest collection, slow fashion, trends and future plans.

Fibre2Fashion: What aspects of being a creative director do you find the most difficult, and which qualities do you believe are essential for success?

Frederic Joncas:

As a design director, I often find myself to be the one who has to take the final decision. I am the contact person for a lot of people, which means that I have to deal with many problems and find solutions for them on a regular basis. The creative process takes time, and it can be difficult to take a decision when you only have a short amount of time to analyse the situation. To be able to manage that aspect, people in my shoes need to keep their instincts sharp and surround themselves with a good team.

 

F2F: Where do you get your creative nutrition from? Which types of styles do you follow?

FJ:

A big part of my job involves analysing trends by looking at all the shows, keeping an eye on trend reports, looking at magazines, and being alert on social media to see how trends are evolving.

Another part of my creative process is to analyse what women around me are wearing and listening to them to see if there are certain needs that they think should be fulfilled. At Judith & Charles, it’s important for us to offer our customers not only fashion styles, but also products that respond to their needs.

F2F: Please describe your latest collection in detail. What kind of styles, silhouettes, colours, etc have you used to create it?

FJ:

For Spring 2023, after few seasons of instability due to global uncertainties, Judith & Charles is opening a colourful dialogue between heritage and modernity by combining traditional tailoring references with vibrant colours. Contrasting shapes and forms infused in our luxurious fabrics provide a dichotomy between femininity and masculinity.

After presenting relaxed silhouettes for a few seasons, Spring 2023 is now focusing on femininity by offering fluid silk blouses, luxurious sweaters, and playful colour combinations. Vibrant colours such as hot pink and lipstick red are at the forefront of the collection. Judith & Charles is also offering the perfect boyfriend jacket as one of the key silhouettes of the season. This piece is definitely a must-have in every wardrobe as it can be worn as an item jacket for a more casual vibe or with matching trousers for a classic Judith & Charles tailored look.

F2F: What makes your label unique amongst the plethora of brands that work with tailored pieces?

FJ:

From research to design and production, each season we source high grade fabrics and trims nationally and internationally in order to create a deliberate fusion, which reflects the shared vision and creative process of Judith & Charles. Subtle and nuanced, with a mindful interpretation of market trends, each collection reflects colours, prints, and cuts true to Judith & Charles’ signature style.

Today’s woman inhabits many worlds—juggling home, family, work, and travel. Judith & Charles will continue to dedicate every effort to refining a brand that consistently exceeds the expectations and desires of the modern woman. Every decision made is with her in mind, from the thoughtfully designed stores to the carefully selected collections that are crafted to fit her lifestyle perfectly.

F2F: What is your take on slow fashion? How do you make your creations sustainable?

FJ:

The instinct to design and produce our line locally has proven to be more than just feeling the satisfaction of being homegrown. It makes good environmental sense, an issue we all benefit from. Judith & Charles is a modern and responsible business, continuously finding new innovative ways to cut waste by utilising offcuts and end pieces in new designs and accessories.

Every year, Judith & Charles offers pieces made in our 4 seasons easy-care fabric. Using the same base fabric allows the customers to build a wardrobe that is versatile and timeless. To stay on trend, this core collection is renewed each season with novelty blouses and knitwear.

F2F: How would you define the fashion industry of Canada? How has it evolved over the past five years?

FJ:

With globalisation, the Canadian fashion industry has experienced multiple challenges over the years. Several companies have decided to relocate their production overseas to be more competitive. The aging workforce is also one of the main issues that Canadian businesses are facing.

To be able to survive in this changing environment, Canadian companies must focus on their strengths and what makes them unique. At Judith & Charles, our long-term relationship with our various Canadian partners allows us to remain competitive and grow with them.

F2F: Which are some of the key tailored pieces that every woman should own?

FJ:

Our 4 seasons workwear collection offers all the essential pieces a woman should have in her wardrobe. The main piece is our structured black blazer. The fitted silhouette and the sharp shoulders give the wearer the confidence she deserves. Our tuxedo dress is also one of our most iconic styles. This dress has been part of our collections since several years and our customers love it for its versatility and comfort.

F2F: What do you think will be the top five fashion trends for 2023?

FJ:

Our top five trends for 2023 will be colourful tonal outfits, blazers, wide-leg pants, evening wear influences, and utility details.

Colourful tonal dressing: Our next collection will be showcasing colourful suits and matching underpinnings.

Blazers: Blazers are no longer just for workwear or special events. They are available in different colours and fabrics and are the perfect layering pieces for any look.

Wide-leg pants: Slim-leg pants are now replaced by wide-leg pants. As wide-leg pants are comfortable, versatile, and easy to wear, they can be paired with a nice sweater for a more casual look or with a cropped jacket for a fashion-forward silhouette.

Evening wear influences: Evening wear details and fabrics such as sequins, lace, fringes, feathers, lurex, and transparency are now mixed with workwear garments to create feminine and playful looks.

Utility details: Cargo pants will continue their influence, and we will get to see utility details such as patch pockets appear on dresses, skirts, and shirts.

F2F: What are your future plans for the label. How are you planning to scale it?

FJ:

With our expertise in tailoring, we believe that men’s fashion is a market that can be interesting for Judith & Charles. We are currently working on our first fall men’s capsule. This collection will offer elevated essentials, providing tailored garments and comfortable fits made with high-quality fabrics for an everyday wardrobe.


What are your future plans for the label. How are you planning to scale it?

Interviewer: Kiran Sahija
Published on: 03/01/2023
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