A line of models shown from the waist down wearing interesting, colorful fabrics and shoes

WashU alum’s label in the spotlight at New York Fashion Week

“If you have nothing to wear, make it yourself.”

Jordana Warmflash

WashU alum Jordana Warmflash is still making waves in the fashion world five years after the launch of her label, Novis, in 2012.

Warmflash graduated from WashU’s fashion design program – one of the oldest in the country – in 2007 and spent five years in the industry, continuing to learn and create, before stepping out on her own with Novis. From the start, her label has been a great success, winning fans as high-profile as Taylor Swift with its whimsical prints, bold colors, and sophistication with a dash of quirk. Warmflash named the brand after her grandmother, whose spirit she reflects in her designs – happy, cultured, a go-getter and an independent thinker. 

While a student at Sam Fox School of Design and Visual Arts, Warmflash landed internships with established designers Peter Som and Zac Posen and, after graduation, with Alice + Olivia and Jay Godfrey. Initially, she designed dresses as a creative outlet, and because she couldn’t find exactly what she was looking for from other brands, but she always knew she wanted to create her own label someday. “That entrepreneurial spirit has always been in my family,” Warmflash said.

A blond model with a brightly patterned blouse in front of a paint-splattered wall

True to her art school roots, Warmflash returns to her creative process at the start of each season. For her, that process begins with drawing inspiration from art in order to translate aesthetics she finds moving into “elevated clothing that’s also accessible.” It continues with weeks of sketching and draping, an ongoing and organic evolution from inspiration to final design. Her favorite pieces from the Novis Fall-Winter 2017 collection, which she showcased at New York Fashion Week this past February, include unusual color combinations, velvets and knit bubble sweaters.

Her best piece of style advice? “If you have nothing to wear, make it yourself.”

See the full interview and photo shoot at All The Pretty Birds.