A backstage interview at Vancouver Fashion Week F/W22 with designer Martha Kyak and her brand, InukChic. She shares with us her love for Inuit fashion, and the influence of her background as a painter.
InukChic is an Inuit brand steered by Nunavut artist Martha Kyak. Inukchic’s designs contain a blend of traditional and modern Inuit designs, applied to a range of garments like winter parkas and glamorous dresses. Within these garments, she uses natural furs, sealskins, and other fabrics. This Fall/Winter collection, Kyak showcases these designs on the runway, and presents a wonderful testament to her artistic handiwork.
What inspired your brand?
I was going through divorce and I just needed extra money, so I started sewing parkas and I would sell them on Facebook. They started being noticed, so they asked me to take part in a fashion show.
How did your artistic vision come into designing for the brand?
I’ve always been very artistic. I’m an artist as well. [I do] painting and drawing, and I’ve always sewn, growing up, and sewn parkas. That’s what Inuit usually do, it was part of our culture, making parkas, and that’s how I started sewing.
I really like the beauty of [parkas], and the warmth, and it’s very practical to wear in the cold. I just made it prettier, so anybody can wear it in the cold and in the winter.
What inspired this specific collection?
When they asked me to do a fashion show, I started thinking “Ok, what else can I do?” I started designing more clothing, and more Inuit inspired designs. That’s when I started doing very modern and very traditional designs together.
What’s your creative process like?
I do a lot of drawing first, and see what I like. I play around with colors, and sometimes the designs come into place, it seems like, by itself.
What’s the vision of the future of your brand?
Doing more fashion shows, and being more creative as well. I’d like to get Inuit more inspired to do their own designs.
Thank you to Martha Kyak for sharing your collection with Vancouver Fashion Week! It was a joy to see your artistic blend of modern and traditional Inuit designs, and to talk with you about your rise as a designer.