Seniors Ben Chory and Francesco Guerra pursue fashion design with streetwear brands

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Fashion design is a form of art and creative expression based on applying design to clothing and accessories. There is a lot that goes into fashion design, namely the creative process and production. The experiences of two Loyola seniors—Ben Chory and Francesco Guerra—offer a glimpse into the world of fashion design. 

Chory had always seen fashion as a side-activity to his film career.

He explained, “Fashion design was always in the back of my mind throughout my early years of high school.”

But it wasn’t until his summer session at Parsons School of Design at the New School in New York City that he actually decided to pursue his own individual projects.

Chory said, “It taught me everything you need to know to be a creative designer.”

Unlike Chory, Guerra started to pursue fashion primarily because of his family.

Guerra noted, “My family has always been really interested in the fashion world, and I have been very much affected by that culture.”

Since they started developing their passions, both Chory and Guerra have been working on numerous projects, from civic engagement to streetwear brands and individual portfolios. A majority of Chory’s projects since the pandemic have been commission work, which means he takes requests from people for individual pieces, as opposed to creating entire collections then selling them. 

Chory explained, “People will come to me and they’ll want some form of garment, and I’ll make it for them.”

Francesco has pursued a few different projects as well, the main being his streetwear brand called Opposite Faith.

With streetwear fashion surging in popularity in the last decade, Opposite Faith aims at reviving a style that has commonly been used inauthentically. 

Guerra said, “I’m not someone who makes graphic design just to be ‘cool.’ I want to make my graphics cool but at the same time I want them to lead to an important message.”

Similarly, Chory started a streetwear project that was postponed due to the pandemic. Visiting Australia as a 16-year-old, Chory was shocked at the fact that koalas would become extinct by the year 2050. 

In response, he took inspiration from one of his idols Jeff Staple to create a brand that would raise money to save this endangered species.

Chory recalled, “Before COVID, I was designing a whole street/surfwear drop with a simplistic, yet powerful message.” 

When the project launches, Chory hopes to donate all proceeds to the Australian Koala Foundation (AKF).

For students who are interested in pursuing this passion, Chory concluded with some parting advice.

Chory explained, “Don’t just make stuff to make stuff… it needs to come from the heart, it needs to be creative, it needs to be impassioned, and it can’t come from greed.”

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