Meet the designer behind our June subscriber cover with Emma Roberts
Cher Park didn’t realize that our stylist,
Isabel Dupré, had selected one of her
Poprageous bathing suits for our
cover shoot with Emma Roberts. The young L.A.-based designer also didn’t realize that she was involved in a heated battle to secure our June subscriber cover. “Someone tagged me on Twitter and I said, ‘Oh, my gosh! What is going on? I need to win the cover!’ so I immediately blasted my 100,000 followers on Instagram and said ‘Please vote for me!!”’ By this time, Ms. Roberts had already tweeted out her love for the look urging people to
vote for #gogiraffe. Park’s suit eventually beat out the other looks from
Saint Laurent. (Think David vs. fashion Goliaths!)
So what’s the story behind the giraffe?
Q&A with Cher Park
What’s the inspiration behind your Poprageous line? “I love the combination of art and apparel. Instead of having it on your wall in your home, why not wear it out on the street? That’s the concept behind Poprageous. It’s a celebration of what’s going on in pop culture—whether it’s in art, music or fashion.”
Where do you get your ideas? “I’m constantly asking my followers on
Instagram what they’d like to see printed on a pair of leggings, a swimsuit or a dress. It’s crowd-sourced inspiration.”
Is that how you discovered your giraffe? “No, in this case it was my sister who suggested I do something with a giraffe because she’s obsessed with them. First and foremost, baby giraffes are just adorable. They have such sincere, honest faces. When I saw this one with its tongue hanging out, it completely reminded me of Miley Cyrus. She’s also been rockin’ one-piece bodysuits, so this giraffe exudes her!”
Your "space cat" onesie is also pretty irresistible. What’s the story behind that graphic? “The background image is from a video game, but we replaced the star-trooper head with a cat because cats are huge online. A lot of our followers are video-game fans and they also love cats—so why not combine them?”
How did you get into this line of work? “Hey, up until a few months ago I was working out of my living room! You could say I’ve had an unconventional path. I have traditional Asian parents who said I had to be a doctor or a lawyer. I didn’t do that, but I did go to Cornell for undergrad and studied urban planning. I ended up working on Wall Street doing real estate investment, but it was the wrong job for me: I wasn’t good at math, and I felt really uncomfortable in a suit. I realized I had gone down the wrong path. It was a difficult time for me because I had done everything my parents told me to do.”
So what did you do? “I came back to L.A. and did an unpaid internship for a bag maker. I had left a world where I was analyzing risks and returns to start a new career where I was choosing what feathers and sequins to use on a bag. It was a very liberating experience! After a couple of months, I decided I needed to work for a fashion company, so I showed up at the doors of Forever 21 and they hired me on the spot to work for the CFO. I worked my way into the marketing department and eventually became involved in their efforts to explore e-commerce. I was fascinated with the combination of fashion and technology. After I learned about conversion and clicks and analytics, I decided I would set up my own pure e-commerce company.”
On that note…you’re offering ELLE Canada readers a deal? “Yes! For May and June, if they enter the code
ELLEPOP20, they will get 20% off any purchase at
How is the untameable Emma Roberts earning her own place in Hollywood? Check out our behind-the-scenes shots from our live, interactive cover shoot with Emma Roberts.
Discover everything you need to know about our gorgeous cover girl, Emma Roberts.