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Grandma Approves on Preview Magazine


Thank you, Preview Magazine for featuring Grandma Approves! You can view the entire article here or below:

Grandma Approves on Preview Magazine

"Everything I know about fashion, I owe to my grandma," declares Bianca Alecxis, a 28-year-old former fashion and beauty editor. To which her 76-year-old grandma echoes, “My granddaughter, Bianca, is like me. In Spanish, we say, vanidosa. We both like beautiful things, and we enjoy making beautiful clothes together.”

Belen, a fashion enthusiast who admits to spending most of her salary then to buy pretty clothes, says the habit extended to her family, "I want them to be fashionable. I enjoy seeing my family wearing nice clothes. If I could design clothes for them and they would wear them, I would be happy.”

Grandma Approves on Preview Magazine

Holding on to their shared love for fashion, it's almost imperative for the vanidosa duo to create a brand to fully encapsulate their love for fashion. Hence, the birth of their Instagram-based brand, Grandma Approves. The two play on their individual strengths to uphold the brand: Belen functions as the main designer while Bianca handles the business side as a former marketer.

Bianca tells Preview, "Grandma’s our main designer. She thinks of ideas and then sketches them up. She’s also very knowledgeable about the different materials, so she makes the decisions on those as well. In the design process, I tell grandma about my ideas too, and she always adds something to it—she’s really good at taking something very simple and elegant and turning it into something truly unique."

Grandma Approves on Preview Magazine

Bianca's input to her Grandma's pieces is a crucial part of Belen's process. "I am used to designing for myself—something I would like to wear, but for the brand, I wanted to make sure it is something my granddaughter would like to wear also," Belen shares. "It’s very exciting getting the samples—Bianca is a perfectionist, I am a perfectionist, so we make sure we agree on what we want to change and what we want to keep."

But even before their brand had existed, this creative exchange between the two is their form of bonding. "Growing up, she would dress me in the cutest outfits she designed for me," Bianca recalls. "As I got older, she started involving me in the design process, and we’d design clothes for ourselves together. It has always been something we loved to do. My friends would always ask me where I get my clothes, and when I say that I designed it with my grandma, they’d always encourage me to sell the pieces. I’m so happy it’s something we finally get to do today.”

Grandma Approves on Preview Magazine

 

On top of that, it seems that Belen is more than just the designer, but also the model! Bianca divulges that she encouraged her Grandma to be the face of the brand. "I love this part the most. It’s amazing to see clothing pieces that look just as great on grandma as it does on younger models." Belen may have some apprehensions, but ultimately the task is a request she can't decline. "I can’t say no to my apo. I used to want to be a model when I was young, and now that I am 76 I have to do it," she says.

Bianca defines the brand philosophy as tailored and non-seasonal. “I’m big on making better decisions when it comes to fashion, and I believe you should only buy pieces you’re really going to be in love with. If you love a piece, you’ll wear it all the time, trends and seasons be damned."

Grandma Approves on Preview Magazine

"We created these beautifully made, high-quality, and unique pieces that we’d like to think could live in your wardrobe for years. My favorite thing to do is look through my grandma’s closet—and years down the line, I imagine your grandchildren looking through yours and finding some Grandma Approves pieces. That’s the dream.”

Additionally, Belen talks about how much she loves knowing all the latest fashion trends, and how she’s been through a lot of trend cycles. “Now, for Grandma Approves, I wanted to design clothes that you would wear for a long time. Simple and elegant. I love all my dresses, and I have had them for a very long time. We want that for the clothes we make too.”

Grandma Approves on Preview Magazine

As a grandma-and-granddaughter team, it's easy to pick up on each other's ideals, too, and to apply them in their brand. "Starting anything new can be scary. You’ll encounter set-backs and experience losses. I always try to remember why we started—being able to go on this journey with my grandma is priceless," Bianca says.

Meanwhile, Belen points out patience is key when working on something you're passionate about. "You have to be patient, especially when you’re both perfectionists. Keep things fun. It is exciting! There’s nothing like seeing your designs come to life."

Grandma Approves on Preview Magazine

And, with their journey only beginning, Belen shares we should expect the brand to produce clothes that will make you feel more confident and make you feel good. "We’ll never skimp on quality and craftsmanship. We take our time, no matter how long, to put out the best. Each piece is the piece of our dreams—nothing less," Bianca concludes.

—Viana Avelino for Preview.ph