Pinay Milliner Making Waves in Japan’s Fashion Scene
Filipino fashion designers have long been known globally for their artistry and creativity. And milliner Tracy Dizon is a perfect example. She pursued her passion in design, turned it into a growing business and entered the Japanese market in no time.
FilJap: What is the idea behind Tiara by Tracy Dizon?
Tracy: The idea behind TTD is to make whimsical fashionable headpiece designs that will make you feel like you’re a princess in a fairy tale.
FilJap: What made you decide to turn your love for hats and headpieces into a real business?
Tracy: It came about right after my 15 minutes of fame on the “Project Runway Philippines Season 2”. In the same year, I represented the country at the 47th Japan Fashion Design Contest in Tokyo. Having the chance to formally develop my design and work for my contest piece, that’s when I decided I can make the most out of the exposure I got and developed my first maiden collections for TTD.
FilJap: How were you able to penetrate the Japanese market?
Tracy: Being the country’s representative to the 47th Japan Fashion Design Contest gave me a head start. And when Tokyo-based American fashion stylist Misha Janette Fleming started wearing my creations at top fashion events in Tokyo, opportunities poured in.
FilJap: There are so many good hat and headpiece designers in Japan, what makes your creations different from theirs?
Tracy: I reinvent our local materials like sinamay to something that can be appreciated by the younger market.
FilJap: What kind of hats and headpieces do you sell?
Tracy: In the Philippines, I mostly cater to weddings. But trying to penetrate the Japanese market, I wanted to step out from the conventional and conservative designs and make more youthful and kawaii bows and headpieces.
FilJap: Where do you sell your items in Tokyo?
Tracy: Currently, I sell in two locations: Mam AvantGarde in Harajuku with my latest designs. I also have special discounted introductory pieces available at BrokenDoll Japan in Shimokitazawa and looking forward to selling some of my clothing line here soon as well.
FilJap: What kind of woman wears TTD?
Tracy: Any woman can wear TTD as long as she wants to live her fashion fantasy.
FilJap: What do you hope to achieve in your business?
Tracy: TTD has been my second baby, next to my son. I hope it would grow globally – one city at a time. And that someday, in my own little way, I can make my country proud.
FilJap: Name some celebrities who wear your creations.
Tracy: Locally, it was such an honor to design Precious Lara Quigaman-Alcaraz’s bridal headpiece. Another local celebrity client I’ve worked with was Maxene Magalona who pioneered the Red Kitty-chan headpiece for her Halloween outfit last year. In Japan, American fashion stylist Misha Janette Fleming.
FilJap: Any message to all the hats and headpieces lovers out there?
Tracy: When in doubt, wear a hat… wear a Tiara by Tracy Dizon hat!
(Photos courtesy of Tracy Dizon)
(Published in FilJap Magazine November 2013)