Sep 25, 2023 - News

Local limelight: Victor Lytvinenko of Raleigh Denim

Photo illustration of Victor Lytvinenko in a polaroid frame.

Photo illustration: Axios. Photo: Courtesy of Raleigh Denim

Raleigh Denim has become one of the biggest fashion brands to emerge out of North Carolina.

  • Started by the married duo of Victor Lytvinenko and Sarah Yarborough in 2007, the brand gained attention for the denim it handcrafts in the Warehouse District and has made clothing for celebrities such as Brad Pitt and Justin Vernon of Bon Iver.

Axios spoke with Lytvinenko — fresh off a trip to New York Fashion Week — for our recurring Local Limelight series. Answers have been edited for Smart Brevity and clarity.

🌮 Favorite place to eat in the Triangle: Taqueria El Toro. I've been going there at least once a week for as long as I can remember.

🍜 What he thinks the Triangle is missing: Soul-warming ramen.

👖 What brought him to the Triangle: I grew up in Raleigh, and then moved to New York City and Europe. I came back in 2007 to start Raleigh Denim because we wanted to be a part of building the creative community in the Triangle.

📱 First read in the morning: Honestly, the first thing I read every morning is email and then Axios AM.

📚 Last great book he read: "Autumn" by Karl Ove Knausgaard.

ğŸŽ§ Go-to podcast: "The New Yorker Radio Hour."

⛰️ Favorite long-weekend spot: Asheville.

🍅 How he unwinds at the end of the day: I love to walk around at dusk, pick the beans, tomatoes, okra, greens and cook dinner from the garden.

👕 Where he finds inspiration: I'm feeling creative growth through collaborations with other passionate artists. The work I'm doing with [Raleigh sculptor] Thomas Sayre is incredibly new, different and fun.

  • Over the past two years, I've been prompting myself with creative experiments to try the opposite of what I normally do, like trying to make "imperfect things" or testing what "giant details" look like instead of small ones.

🔥 What he's looking forward to: Fall fires.

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