We've long loved Jason Wu from afar, so we were thrilled to get the chance to sit down with him over an early a.m. nosh at YMA's Breafast With The Boss yesterday morning. The 29-year old designer met with students from the YMA Fashion Scholarship Fund (a program that provides money to over 125 students showing promise and seeking careers in fashion) at The Lamb's Club, where he dished on his journey to success. Here are five things we learned about him (other than that he's hard-working, really well-spoken, and down to earth).
1. Jason Wu flew to Chicago and spent his Thanksgiving in a hotel room in order to get considered to dress the first lady. He says, "I went from my gut instinct. It was one of the best moments of my life and I'll never forget it, but it also made me go beyond... I always say it's like being an actor: You get one big role and then you can't stop, you need to look for your next big role."
2. He looks up to Ralph Lauren as a great American designer that's expanded his brand on all levels.
3. Wu interned for Narciso Rodriguez and credits his experience there for a lot of his fashion education. He actually didn't graduate Parsons, but rather left his senior year.
4. The designer was able to fund his company with money earned designing.... toys. He says, "I don’t know if you guys know this, but I was in a different industry before — I worked in the toy industry for a long time (since I was 16), so I was able to garner a little money to start off my company. That’s how I was able to do it."
5. He listens to Lady Gaga at the gym (and he goes almost every day!).
Photo: Courtesy of LaForce+ Stevens