RozeMerie Cuevas, In Pirouettes
How do we create great art? We often know great art by the way it looks, or what we hear about it, and most people will argue that everything about art is subjective.
JAC by Jacqueline Conoir founder and designer RozeMerie Cuevas has been practicing her craft all her life. From her upbringing in Vancouver to her Parisian fashion schooling, to her now globally recognized fashion brand, RozeMerie knows a little something about commitment to craft. Her fashion design career has taken her all over the world and now, as the brand touches back down in Vancouver, it’s time to uncover the story of the woman behind the design.
A Coastal Awakening
RozeMerie Cuevas grew up in Vancouver, BC. The tragic passing of her mother at age five, one Jacqueline Conoir, would eventually be the inspiration for RozeMerie’s debut fashion brand.
Her father, an admittedly old-fashioned man, didn’t believe in spending money on “cool clothes”. So, RozeMerie began to sew and design her own wardrobe. A necessary hobby turned into a fierce passion, and her designs grew to be more unique and creative as each year passed.
Her first public appearance came after her cousin noticed the skill in her clothing design. He entered her into a fashion competition at the 1980’s hotspot Richards on Richards, where she debuted her collection amidst a range of other local designers.
“I kicked myself the day of the show when I saw all the designers arrive with their fancy garment bags and rolling racks, while I arrived with all of my designs in garbage bags.”
The show went on, despite RozeMeries aching anxiety. Her models walked across the stage in black and white sophistication. In the crowd, she heard two women speak: “This black and white scene is fantastic.”
A Brand is Born
The 1980s were a time of intensifying globalization. Advancements in technology meant that Canadians could see what people were wearing in Paris, Milan, and London.
European style became coveted and desired. Closing off a time when local designs were the only options, women began to exclusively seek imported fashions.
For a local fashion designer, this meant complications. RozeMerie saw that if she wanted to succeed she would need to learn from the fashion icons. And so, she moved to Paris to study Design and Pattern Making at ESMOD.
Her rigorous studies opened up new possibilities for creativity in her art. RozeMerie returned to Vancouver in 1986, with her future husband and business partner, and began her Jacqueline Conoir Collection.
Power suits and evening wear set her apart from the competition. RozeMerie’s belief that women are powerful, modern, and strong propelled her designs into the wider market. Her fashion showed a complexity of emotions both through their tailoring and their drape.
As the market began to value local designs, RozeMerie was recognized for her commitment, artistry, and talent. She grew her Jacqueline Conoir brand globally, opening up over a hundred retail stores.
There & Back Again
The artist’s evolution is as natural as their desire to create. Nothing stays the same; that is certainly the beauty of art. The success of Jacqueline Conoir, and its evolution to JAC by JC, took RozeMerie across the world. She travelled, designed, learned, and grew.
JAC was created to shine a light on the modern woman; the chic, contemporary, sensual, and detail-oriented woman of today. It’s aesthetic is a perfect pirouette of a fully developed idea. The evolution of the brand is the answer to the question: “How do we create great art?”