Kimberly Jurek: 100 Creatives

Kimberly Jurek: 100 Creatives

Number 62: Kimberly Jurek

City: Minneapolis

Years spent living in MN: 32 (one year spent in Italy studying design) for a total of 33 years living.

Designer Kimberly Jurek thinks green--even if that's not the actual color of the fabric she is working with. As designer and owner of K. Jurek, a local favorite among fashionistas, Jurek works to ensure that the items she produces are local, green, and fair trade labor friendly. Her creations often speak to a romantic, bohemian quality, though they never veer too far off from a fresh, feminine, and modern path. And while her pieces are made locally, Jurek's line also draws influences from her travel in Italy, and her love of art.

Name three things that are inspiring your work right now:

1. Travel

2. Vintage clothing

3. The '70s

Name three things that inspired and/or motivated you as a budding creative type:

1. Living and studying in Italy

2. The style of my Swedish friends while there

3. Having fewer boundaries or rules when creating pieces. When I first started designing I thought more about creativity and less about selling things. Now I really have to think about both, along with marketing and who is really going to buy this item. I also have to find fabrics that can be reordered, versus an item that could be made into one special dress, because now I have to worry about duplicating it and making more when boutiques order.

What was your last big project?

I always have something going on, but my five-year-anniversary fashion show last year was my last really large project. It was amazing and I was able to work with fantastic people.  

Ft. Ignite Models Inc, photographer Stephanie Colman, and styling by Alice Sydow
Ft. Ignite Models Inc, photographer Stephanie Colman, and styling by Alice Sydow
2011 Fall/Winter/Holiday Collection

What do you have going on now or coming up in the near future that should be on our radar?  

Right now I am working on designing my spring-summer 2012 collections for a late June deadline. Also, we are pregnant with our first baby and I am excited to spend some time with him in July when he arrives. I am contemplating a fall show but I'm still not sure if I can manage to coordinate it. I love having events, but they are so much work.

I will be showing the fall-winter-holiday 2011 and spring-summer 2012 collections in Las Vegas for market in August and continuing to plug away at creating new collections going forward.

Creative/career high point (so far)?

I was most happy with how my five-year-anniversary fashion event came together. It was a lot of work and I felt it most represented me as a creative person. I was able to incorporate lots of talented local people and I was very proud of the result. It was such an intimate and underground event and it felt really special to me.

What has been your biggest challenge as an artist?

Ft. Ignite Models Inc, photographer Stephanie Colman, and styling by Alice Sydow
Ft. Ignite Models Inc, photographer Stephanie Colman, and styling by Alice Sydow
2011 Fall/Winter/Holiday Collection

The biggest challenge is always having a enough time to get everything done. There is always so much to do and think about concerning making the business a success, and it's hard to always dot every "i" and cross every "t." Fortunately, I love being busy and I am not too shabby at multi-tasking and listing.

I have an amazing support structure with my husband Felix (who is always encouraging me to push the envelope) and from my family and friends in the community. I feel lucky to live in Minneapolis where I have a huge structure of people who go out and buy K.Jurek clothing at Cliche, Drama, Gallery 360, Karma, Parc Boutique, and Fresh Face Loftique.

How has the local scene changed since you began your career?

There are a lot of talented people working in the design industry. It's exciting to see all of the new ideas and high level of workmanship. It seems like the community is growing and there are more events, more fashion design labels based here, and more places who want to sell local-and independently-made things. All of this is great for those involved!

Is there a fashion faux pas that you feel has been given a needlessly bad rap? Why?

Wearing black at a wedding. Sometimes it's the most elegant and beautiful thing to wear, and I think it's silly to avoid it simply because "they" say not to.

Do you have a suggestion for someone whose work we should be checking out? Feel free to leave your top picks in the comments.

Past creatives, so far:

100. Jennifer Davis
99. Sean Smuda
98. Chuck U
96. Amy Rice
95. Kara Hendershot

70. Tim Sievert
67. Dessa
66. Heidi Arneson
65. Erin Currie
64. Jayme Halbritter
63. Amy Buchanan

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