Las Vegas is a setting balanced between the classic glamour of its early history and the extraordinary and untraditional. Like her home base, fashion designer Wanda Potter-Merritt did not follow the traditional path. Armed with a business degree and a mission to provide elegant designs infused with classic sophistication, Wanda began Vegas Couture to counter the lack of fashion opportunities in Nevada and joined the Las Vegas Fashion Design Council. Inspired by more glamorous eras, Vegas Couture’s Resort collection focuses on beachwear that blend trends from the 1940’s and 50’s with modern fashion, making it a simple staple to bring you from day-to-night. Her staple pieces can be mixed and matched to accommodate any occasion. In this Designer Spotlight, Wanda explains the origin and inspiration for her latest Resort Collection.
How and why did you start?
Since a young girl, I have always been fascinated by elegant fashion and began designing by taking unappealing garments (that did not fit or lacked the design style that worked best for my body type) and completely redesigning and reconstructing them.
What is your fashion philosophy?
My fashion philosophy is that anyone can look great in fashion, as long as they consider their body type, the garment color, and the silhouettes that accentuate their individuality.
What do you think about fashion today?
I believe fashion today has become a great deal more trendy than in the past when clothing was not only appealing but constructed with quality in mind.
Where do you go and what do you do for inspiration?
For inspiration, I may go to an art gallery to view the work of such artists as Erté or watch classic movies that showcase the elegant and classic designs from the past. The beautiful lake communities of Lake Las Vegas are a place of relaxation as well. The elegant hotels, beautiful homes and tranquil lakes inspire my work.
What inspired your collection?
The Resort Collection was inspired by images of cruise ships docking along the shores of the Caribbean islands and the vision of a serene afternoon relaxing on deck. The black and white motif says elegance to me and I tried to pass that feeling along to my shoppers.
What is your biggest hurdle building a brand today?
My biggest hurdle building a brand today is navigating the competition to set our brand apart, as well as finding skilled and reliable industry workers to perfect our product.
Any tips and tricks of the trade?
My tip would be to do something every day towards your goal, no matter how small.
Get ready to look fabulous for your next cruise. Follow Vegas Couture for when this line takes off.