The awesome fashion blogger Jillian Mercado caught up with us to speak about her campaign with Diesel, how her disability affects her work in the fashion world, and her love and passion for fashion. This campaign is hopefully the start of fashion becoming a more inclusive industry, let’s hear from Jillian:
How did the campaign for Diesel come about?
The campaign for diesel I got about two months ago. I knew Nicola from a cover shoot he did with the magazine I work for WeTheUrban Mag. From there we just kept in touch. Over the end of summer or so I saw a Facebook post posted by his assistant Prince Franco and also Nicola himself about some sort of casting call that dealt with Diesel. So my friends and I thought it would be really cool to just submit and see where it goes from there. I had no idea that they actually would’ve picked me for the campaign, so everything was a beautiful surprise to me. A couple weeks later I got an email saying that they were really interested in having me for this campaign and from there the rest is history.
What is your favorite piece from the collection?
I have always been a fan of their jeans shirts. They are still my favorite piece from Diesel because it’s extremely comfortable never stiff and it just always feels great on my body. From the spring and summer 2014 collection I really am obsessed with their Skinzee jeans. They are the most comfortable jeans and they fit perfect on my body.
How has your disability affected you in the fashion world?
In a way I have never put my disability hinder me from achieving anything I want to do. A friend of mine advised me to turn in my disability to an advantage and see the greater things that come with it rather then the negative side. If anything I have put myself out there to show everyone that having a disability shouldn’t stop you from anything. That including being in a industry like fashion.
Do you have any advice for girls out there who may have a disability who want to get into fashion?
Definitely I would advise them that it won’t be easy, I don’t want to sugarcoat things and say that being in a wheelchair people are going to give you everything just because. I have worked really hard to be where I am and I would advise them to never give up that no matter what obstacle you may have coming your way, just go right through it and make it happen. That is of course if you want to be in an industry like fashion but believe me I am here to tell you that it is possible. Just like I would advise anyone who would want to be in the fashion industry whether you have a disability or not to study real hard; reading newspapers and study up on your fashion history as well as internships are extremely important!
What are your favorite places to hang out in NYC?
Oh boy I love the city because they are so many places to hang out, I’m usually out a lot more during the summer. I love going to parties at The Standard Hotel, hearing some jazz music at the Gramercy Hotel, just walking around the Riverside Park or eating Shake Shack.
What is your favorite thing about fashion?
My most favorite thing about fashion is how people can put together an outfit way beyond what anybody else is wearing and how it’s a world full of creative minds who work together to create masterpieces and that’s what drives me. Nothing gets me more excited than collaborating with people and putting minds together to come up with different ideas and different projects, it’s what I live for.
What are you looking forward to during New York Fashion Week?
I love fashion week so much because people that you get too people haven’t seen in such a long time and experience the chaos and hustle that is fashion week. I’m just looking forward to getting inspired by the designer shows and presentations.
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