Here's another mini digi-view coming your way! I hope you enjoyed the last one~ I've been trying my best to keep myself motivated during these times and I hope you all are too! This issue is a lot of fun so please enjoy! Recently I was featured on O-Kei!! Podcast. You can check it out here: Episode 45 - Event Collaboration with Japanese Designers w/ Alexia aka GHOST GiRL GOODS One of the individuals on the podcast is who we are featuring !
Kamilah Jones - Designer and Owner of Hard Decora
When I was at Tekko in 2019, I saw Hard Decora products being sold at the Lolita Collective booth! I looked through their bold and colourful designs and knew I had seen them online. Kamila's artwork is very distinctive!
(A photo of Hard Decora's fashion show at Tekko 2018. Kurebayahi was one of her models too!)
Hard Decora is a US based clothing brand that was started in 2014, but Kamilah didn't start selling at conventions until 2016. This is when her brand started to get more recognition as she appeared at more cons onwards! Kamilah also creates custom prop weapons and even has a comic book!
I asked Kamilah what is the message she wants to convey with her brand and designs: "My message is to be aggressively cute which basically looks like a colorful cutie being taken seriously in the real world. Just because I wear a rainbow it doesn't mean that I don't also demand respect as an adult or that I'm lost/confused about my identity as a person."
(Some photos from the Hard Decora FB page, featuring the Jaw Breakers Baseball Tee.)
I also asked out of all the pieces Kamilah has designed, does she have a favourite?
"I would assume that you're referring to my clothes but it's actually my Hard Decora comic that I hold the closest to my heart. It's really the story behind my clothing brand and what I finally have the skills to do now. It's about a young teenager that wants to join an alternative fashion girl gang and the adventures that ensue from that."
This photo on the right is the cover of Kamila's Hard Decora comic! You can see a short preview on her website and even check out the characters and their bios by clicking here.
Kamilah is working hard to bring the Hard Decora comic into a monthly webtoon! "My big focus this year is to make Hard Decora: The Comic into a monthly webtoon by the end of year with a pairing Patreon. Of course I'll still have my shop but I'll be putting more emphasis on my comic for a bit."
(Kamilah has also created some small casual comics depicting every day situations!)
I even asked Kamilah a bit about O-Kei!! Podcast too. "I always loved the podcast medium and when Hayden (my co-host) came to me with the idea of creating a j-fashion oriented podcast I was like dope! We love to hear stories from different sides of the community that maybe aren't represented well in another form."
O-Kei!! Podcast even has it's own website, which you can check out!
Did you know that Hard Decora had a pop up shop at the galaxxxy store in Japan??! THATS AMAZING!! Kamilah said this is one thing she is most proud of in her achievements with her brand. "That was a big highlight and validation of my work." I think anyone who has the chance to sell their products elsewhere, even in a local shop, should be proud! It shows that someone is believing in your hard work!
(A snapshot from Hard Decora's galaxxxy pop-up!! This is absolutely amazing! Congrats Kamilah on such a wonderful achievement for yourself and your brand!)
And lastly, I asked Kamilah if she could make anything in the world, what would she want to make: "I'd love to design a dating sim game for my Hard Decora characters where the player was new to the neighborhood and would have the chance to date someone from the Hard Decora gang, Scummy Boys, or other style gangs that'll be revealed later. "
(A small preview of the Scummy Boys from the Hard Decora website!)
Thanks for your response Kamilah! And thank you all for reading. Be sure to check out the Hard Decora social networks and website, and check out our other blog posts on KAWAII INTERVIEWS, events I've attended, and more!