Sunday, October 16, 2011 interviews former Minneapolis designer Eugene Lumpkin

During New York Fashion Week, talked to Eugene Lumpkin, Director of Design at Sears Holdings Management Corporation, after being introduced to him by local arts patron and Rox jewelry designer Robyne Robinson.

[Photo of Eugene Lumpkin & Robyne Robinson via]

JM: How did you two meet?

Eugene: When I was in Minnesota, I had my collection I was doing. I got to know Robyne through mutual friends. She used to wear my clothes and she supported me a lot. She would wear a lot of my stuff on-air. She’s just amazing; very supportive of artists and of creative people.

JM: She is a fantastic individual. How did your interest in fashion begin?

Eugene: Both of my parents were very stylish. That’s how I grew up. My mom used to do some modeling for a store on Nicollet that was owned by Dayton’s. It was kind of like Bergdorf Goodman… and my grandmother used to sew when I was young. Then I was at the Children’s Theater Company for many years as a kid. I was in plays there and exposed to a lot of things, one of them being costume design. Then when I was in high school, I used to impersonate Michael Jackson. I would make all my own costumes. At the University of Minnesota I started off in merchandising then I switched to fashion design.

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