Vanny Tousignant and her passion for excellence

TO dream lofty dreams… condescendingly envision a bright future…and reach out for that elusive star… these and much more are what young ambitious souls profess to better their lives and enhance their standard of living. The eagerness to acquire personal benefits, the thirst for even a moment of power, the aspiration for wealth and fame, and the keen scheme for self-improvement are unmistakably motivating factors that entice young fantasists to farther aim high while ably armed with unflinching determination to attain their goals.

The beauty and the stylist rolled into one

From Indonesia, the picturesque land of thousands of volcanic islands in Southeast Asia, was born a promising fashion entrepreneur whose vision was prognosticated to put Jakarta (the country’s emerging fashion city) in the world map via the utilization of its native batik, tenun ikat, and songket, not to mention their natural fibers, cotton, and silk.

Vanny Pattiasina-Tousignant is unambiguously a born fashionista (she dons atypical mix-match wardrobe with flamboyant accents and ornate jewelry pieces) and a latent model (her statuesque deportment is convincingly one for the ramp). One won’t have second thought or skeptical that she is from the fashion world with the way she projects herself and how she interacts with people. Her charismatic moves and compelling nuances could effortlessly persuade people to her side. She’s that magnetic!

Raised singlehandedly by her mom, after her father passed away due to a lingering illness, strappingly developed Vanny’s reticent and coy personality into somewhat garrulous (but eloquent) and brazen (but cultured) young woman who knows what she wanted in life. Being the third among the four siblings made her even clever and smart when it comes to argument for she could effectually fight for her right, know what she’s worth, and command what she merits.                                                                                            

The profile of a fashion show visionary

Vanny at an early age was already leaning towards fashion arts and its creative aspect since her mom and one of her sisters were both seamstresses… indeed, the fruit truly never fell far from its tree! She slowly learned the trade through observation, assistance, until such time when creativity became second nature to her

In May of 1987, Vanny’s mom (who was already a US citizen) petitioned her and that totally changed her lifestyle and all the more gave her access to limitless possibilities in fulfilling her dream. It didn’t matter if she had to start from an abysmal bottom and sacrificed her free time working, she was prepared to forgo a little luxury and all set to save in the pursuit of a life-changing career – education!

But fate had it that her focused track had to take a crossroad. While employed in a Bulgarian bakery her exquisite appeal didn’t escape a customer’s vigilant eyes. Edward’s infrequent visit turned to regular stopover…even without the intention of buying baked products but just to see and talk to her. Their constant meeting paved every rough path for Edward and slowly but surely expunged every doubt in Vanny’s… until they decided to tie the knot on November 1988.

Their blissful union was blessed with two boys: Teo Vanyo and Yosef Evert. Incidentally, Teo is married to a Filipina, Karmila, with a daughter, Aurelia, an inter-Asian matrimonial bond that offered a great deal of inspiration for Vanny, hence her fashion trademark, “Vanny Fashion” was coined after Teo.

Vanny acknowldges cheers during an in-house show

While Vanny was competently armed with the usual cultural norms she grew up with, she’s ready to accept and embrace the enriching western trends that could augment her skills and just might influence her standards as well. She was inevitably challenged by everything new around her but her enthusiasm to attain what she was here in the US for only strengthen her will to create a higher impact on her drive and focus.

“I maybe Asian by orientation by my ideas are culturally universal,” Vanny said with a hint of smugness. “From Empire Beauty School in Manhattan where I learned the rudiments of fashion artistry and the Learning Institute for Beauty Sciences where I mastered the art of cosmetology, I was very confident that I was ably equipped with everything this creative field needed.”   

People relentlessly aim for perfection but while it is oftentimes unfeasible to realize, aiming for self-gratifying excellence is probably easier and more achievable. Admittedly, all human efforts have flaws and the huge diversity of influences could either develop or ruin one’s ideas but Vanny was tough and unyielding. She was here to succeed… she was here for the win!

Her passion for excellence competently kept Vanny passionately driven and zealously focused to her main target while indefatigably trying to be the best that she could be without the slightest intention of hurting others along the way. Her innate aspiration is tempered by selfless consideration, genuineness, and a personal awareness that concern the interest of her family and friends.

A sovenir shot from IFAW-Season 3 show during the NY Fashion Week

From the start, Vanny was conscious about her attitude and personality knowing that these reflect her style. “My main objective isn’t merely to survive this monotonous daily grind but to prosper and succeed in the fashion business… and carry on my vision with indisputable enthusiasm while infusing my own personal style that caters to the general consumers,” the quick-witted lady designer straightforwardly stated while unmindfully finger-combing her hair that had seemingly gone astray from a wisp of thin air.

Aside from operating her Vanyo Fashion business, Vanny’s hands are kept full with her commitment as Director of Miss Woman Kebaya Indonesia-USA, as the USA Director of Beauty of Arts International Magazine, and as the Founder / CEO of International Fashion and Arts Week (IFAW) which has been included in the event calendar of NY Fashion Week in just three seasons of operations.

Last September 16, 2018 at 4W43 in Manhattan, Vanny Tousignant’s IFAW held its 3rd season with thirteen international designers and more than sixty models to a full-house capacity crowd that fittingly affirmed her unswerving success in her chosen career.

When queried about her future plans and projects she’s wordlessly cooking: “I have a lot of plans crowding my head,” Vanny instantly replied rolling her dark brown eyes trying to decipher and grasp her thoughts. “After having joined more than fifty shows here in NY and Canada, I’m concentrating on IFAW… I really want this to grow big and conquer the mainstream audience. With the way things are turning out, I could see a potential venture in it and hopefully my enthusiasm maintains its obsessive loftiness”

Around this hardworking and passionately fashionable woman is her entourage of equally committed and zealous friends and staff who work hand-in-hand with her through thick and thin.

“I just simply like to acknowledge the help of those people and close associates who, without their encouragement and support, my ideas and vision won’t go this far…and also to the photographers, make-up artists, models, and volunteers who made all these projects successfully possible,” she said.

With her statement I remember a quote from fashion icon Tommy Hilfiger: “The road to success is not easy to navigate…but with hard work, drive, and passion, it’s possible to achieve the American dream.”

For comments and suggestions, please email to: [email protected]

Photo credit: Richard Simpson

Make-up by Intan Sahrini / Nefertiti Paris 

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