PASSION FOR FASHION: CASTERINE COTOUR
NY Fashion Week may be over but this passionate designer and his team continue to make fashion their life and of course always focus on making people look good. I chatted up with President and CEO Joshua Colon about his fashionably thriving company Casterine Cotour.
FBE: Tell us about where you’re from and where Casterine Cotour is based?
JC: I was born in Washington Heights, NYC with East European and Latin descent. CC is best known as CXC is a NYC company.
FBE: When was Casterine Cotour launched and how did you decide on this unique name?
JC: It was launched on New Year’s Day 1-1-09! (You already know our anniversary parties are awesome!!!). The name was a good and funny error. I remember being at our second “name our company” meeting with co-founder, Kasterine. We were brainstorming names and wanted something officially raw. So we added a twist to her name-Kasterine of Italian descent, and made it Casterine. The second part of the name was found when my brother misspelled couture in graffiti as cotour. I actually started to think of Co-tour to be a collaboration of collision and tour which only meant something BIG…and so Cotour stayed to become Casterine Cotour. Even better is our logo, which is two C’s facing each other joined with an X to create a makeshift infinity sign, a symbolism of our longevity-Nice.
FBE: Did you have any training that assisted with your business?
JC: I graduated from Norman Thomas High School, where I studied business management. Then I attended a CUNY with entrepreneurship studies where I learned how to make things happen on my own… I went from a college student to a self-made designer. Overall, I contribute working alongside my dad at his NJ lounge a major aid to my business knowledge.
FBE: What was the motivation behind launching a clothing line and a designer?
JC: The motivation was always there from a very young age, I can tell you the things that slowed me down more so than what motivates me because the passion is constantly burning. I don’t even consider my business, Casterine Cotour as work, though I find ‘work’ to be a horrid word. But if making people look good is merely a job, then I am due a promotion *Kanye shrug*. Seriously, I’m addicted to fashion design, at times I go hungry to buy fabric. It’s a very personal commitment.
FBE: You previously mentioned to me that you are on of a three person design team…tell us who the other team members are?
JC: The two other members that make up Casterine Cotour are Kasterine Negrin; the Co-Founder and Head Designer, and Shakima Swain-Ridley; the Fashion Director. Together we are the original Team CaCo trio behind Casterine Cotour’s success. Individually we are business moguls-in-the-making. We also have an advisory board of ten business professionals in the finance, marketing and law fields.
FBE: Interesting combination…what else makes your fashions more unique than your competitors in the fashion industry?
JC: CXC is a new arrival on the fashion scene providing another fresh way to getting dressed up with a rock-glam aesthetic. While we do target the same audience as high-end boutiques, we feel strongly that CXC more closely reflects the new fashionable mindset. We are unorthodox, independent, well educated, well read and well informed. The brand’s slogan is “ESTO PERPETUA: AD INFINITUM” which is Latin for “LET IT BE FOREVER: HAVING NO END”. The slogan fittingly expresses our endurance and the infinite style prospects CXC has to offer. We have the CaCo Movement with daily increasing supporters in anticipation of our blog updates, limited collections and upcoming ‘5 International City Tour 2010 launch’. Most excitingly, is the group of designers to be assembled this year, who will help display the diverse elements of fashion in the brand.
FBE: Where do you get inspiration from?
JC: The subliminal messages received while doing everyday activities are our inspiration. For example, walking to the bodega and finding $8.00…8 which is the infinity sign but vertical. Or being deliriously high off life and love, to reach over and sketch a wicked dress. It just proves that everything has its season and so we are fortunate of our timing.
FBE: Is Casterine Cotour exclusively a men’s or women’s line?
JC: We offer clothing for both men and women; where the main design concept each season is time in all its limitlessness fused with eccentric characteristics to create original designs.
FBE: Who would you acclaim as your personal inspiration?
JC: Casterine Cotour is inspired to move forward by the genuine support of our friends. Which happen to be the same supporters of the CaCo movement, where we encourage trendsetting leadership, that began way before the design themselves.
FBE: Currently who is your favorite designer?
JC: Of course we are so into Alex Marc Dolce Margiela Saab Ford. And even though it sounds cliche our favorite designer is also the Creator. Patterns found from the joining of water hit by the sun is amazingly beautiful and most importantly, they are original.
FBE: I am loving that last response…what advice can you give young up and coming entrepreneurs and designers?
JC: To do it! Dreams are goals of the soul, so live them. And don’t give up under any circumstances or stall for too long. If you do get stuck don’t rely on luck. Write out your own destiny before it writes you out.
FBE: What in the future for Casterine Cotour…let’s say the next 5 years?
JC: In 5 years…we’ll be opening our international headquarters in Tokyo, Japan Baby!!!
FBE: Any last words for the FBE viewers?
JC: It’s best to be your own publicist. Every second is a golden opportunity. CXC can testify to the people we met during our journey forward, most being at random non-fashion related locations. You cannot control time, but you can make it work for you. -Team CaCo.
And of course you can keep up with this amazing design team by following them on twitter at twitter.com/casterinecotour