We had the good fortune of connecting with Jael Pedraza and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Jael, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
I was still in school, finishing my last year in college, before my business was even an idea. Much like other people, my plans for the future took a turn because of the pandemic. I had to spend my last semester behind a computer while still working on a senior collection. The time I spent at home really helped me get back in touch with my creative side. I started researching for fun new sustainable techniques that I could incorporate into my designs. I then stumbled upon a technique called Nuno-felting. A technique in which wool fibers are agitated with water and olive oil soap to make a felted textile. This soft, tactile, and renewable material were a great alternative for synthetic fibers and plastics. I had so much fun exploring this technique that after finishing my senior collection, I became obsessed and inspired. After many failed attempts, and mood-boards later, Death Desire Fibers was born.

Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I am a multi-disciplinary artist. Fashion has been my main string of artistry, but certainly not my only one. I think what sets me apart from others is that everything that I do, I have to somehow apply my creativity in some way or another. It’s like an urge to express myself in anything that I touch. I like that my work is not as easy to define, yet it is comprehensible to see. I would say that I definitely haven’t had an “easy time” in the grand scheme of things. I’ve let frustration, self-doubt, and sometimes being taken advantage of, get in the way of my work, and unfortunately, my mental health. I’m definitely not a natural side-hustler on the business side and I wish I was better at the game, however I think when you surround yourself with the right people and the right environments, positive opportunities and experiences come your way. I may have to learn the hard way, but I am a firm believer that things happen for a reason, and the genuine connections I make along the way, makes this journey much more enjoyable.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I haven’t been in the DFW area for long but I’ve found some of the most unique places that are worth visiting. Luckily, the DFW area is huge and there’s so much to do. I would start the morning by grabbing a delicious bite at Toasted if we had too many drinks the night before or Yellow Rosa if we didn’t have enough drinks the night before. I would then take a stroll through downtown Dallas and the Arts District. Maybe even catch an exposition at the Dallas Museum of Art. After that, we would continue the day by searching for some hidden gems in the local vinyl shops like Doc’s Records or Forever Young Records. Lastly, I would introduce my friends to the signature Texas brisket, Terry Black’s Barbecue. You can’t visit Texas without trying our brisket.

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I would like to give a shoutout to my friends and family who have been very supportive since I started my career as a designer. A special shout-out goes to all the market pop-up coordinators whom I’ve connected with over the past year, and who have been amazing in helping small businesses just like mine get more exposure. Last but certainly not least, my husband, for all the advice, love, support, and encouragement he has given me.

Website: www.deathdesirefibers.com

Instagram: @deathdesire.fibers

Image Credits
Photos 3,4,5,6: Photography Irsa Sharnez, Modeled by Jeanette Hoelscher

Nominate Someone: ShoutoutDFW is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.