[designs we've carried from Stop Staring! include the Espionage Dress, Cotillion Dress, and Carmen Sandiego Dress]
This week, we’re talking with Alicia Estrada, the founder of Stop Staring! clothing. Stop Staring! makes some amazingly beautiful pin-up and rockabilly dresses for women of all sizes. They’re known for their vintage inspiration and excellent fit; and they have been featured in magazines from Allure to Oprah, and worn by stars like Paris Hilton and Zooey Deschanel. And… keep your eyes peeled! We’re going to carry a swimsuit, romper, and some of their cutest dresses this spring & summer!
Read Crystal’s interview with Alicia from Stop Staring!
ModCloth: How did Stop Staring! begin?
Alicia: I started sewing my own dresses while I was in college. Everyone loved my unique vintage-inspired dresses, and girls started buying them from me. The dresses were so popular, I decided to set up a booth at the Hootenanny Rockabilly Concert, and the dresses sold out. That was about nine years ago. I was the first booth to sell vintage-inspired original designs, starting one of today’s hottest fashion trends!
MC: I read about your big family. (Note to readers: Alicia has six sisters and three brothers!) Do any of your brothers or sisters share your interest in fashion?
Alicia: Yes, three of my six sisters work with me, and two of my sisters-in-law also work here at Stop Staring! It’s so much fun to work together, watch the company grow, and build such a cool business. We all love fashion, and we all have something special to add to Stop Staring! My two youngest sisters, Eva and Sarah, were not only our first pin-up models, but they have been a huge inspiration to me as a designer!
[top left: Alicia Estrada; bottom & right: Stop Staring's cover model, Ashley Greene, who also starred in Twilight]
MC: Where else do you find inspiration for pieces?
Alicia: Everywhere. I love everything vintage and old. Jewerly, antiques, the old Hollywood starlets, black and white movies, Film Noir–all of this inspires me, and so much more. I love to people watch, so I get lots of inspiration from street style today! Ultimately, I think God has been my greatest inspiration. After all, He is the greatest Designer of all time!
MC: What is your favorite part of the design process?
Alicia: Draping! I just love to see the dresses flow on a real person. To me, fit is everything. I want to make sure that girls love the fit of Stop Staring! Our biggest compliment is that “Stop Staring! has an amazing fit!”
MC: What trends have you noticed in vintage-inspired clothing through the years?
Alicia: When I started ten years ago, people thought I was crazy to create my own line of vintage-inspired dresses. Vintage store owners said that no one would buy them because it wasn’t real vintage. I’m so happy that I didn’t listen to such negativity. Stop Staring! has inspired so many designers. Now, everyone is making vintage-inspired clothing!
MC: You’ve been featured in so many magazines, and I’ve seen a lot of celebs wearing your dresses. Do you ever meet the celebrities who wear your pieces?
Alicia: Yes, I have actually met with some of the celebrities. Most are really cool people, and they are always thankful for Stop Staring! Ashley Greene, one of the stars of the blockbuster hit movie “Twilight,” (she plays Alice Cullen) is actually our front cover model. Ashley has been modeling for us for the past three seasons. She loves Stop Staring! and wears our dresses everywhere. We had no idea she was this huge movie star, until Twilight came out! She is so beautiful, cool and humble.
MC: Do you have any words of wisdom for girls who dream of starting their own companies?
Alicia: Follow your heart; dream big! Try to be original, and don’t be a copy cat- copy cats go nowhere. Originality is everything! The most fun part of designing is the creative process, so learn your craft! Immerse yourself in the design process, and don’t be lazy! Pray and ask God for guidance- He is the ultimate source of creativity!
MC: What’s the next step for Stop Staring!?