Article by Meagan Collins
What can you tell me about yourself?
I am a painter, designer, business person, and art historian. I went to WMU to study art history and somewhere along the way got interested in fashion. Some years later a couple reps from a clothing company were at one of my painting shows in Phoenix, Arizona and asked if I would be interested in doing some clothing design. I of course jumped on the opportunity, and have been learning the process ever since.
What one piece of advice would you give to someone wanting to start a career in fashion?
Not to change your style to fit what is popular. The only people who innovate are the ones who have something new to offer. Obviously, we are all inspired by others, and appropriate from the past, but what makes something new and exciting is the thing a lot of people get self-conscious about.
What does fashion mean to you?
Fashion is art. I think of clothing as wearable sculpture.
What are some of your accomplishments as a designer?
I have shown some of my textile designs in Kalamazoo, Michigan, Washington DC, and Jakarta Indonesia. I am lucky enough to have a clothing line which lets me express my ideas, and allows for people to have some of my work in an affordable way.
Who are some of your favorite designers?
Emilio Pucci, Christian Louboutin, Issey Myake, Kenzo, and Christian Lacroix.
How long does it usually take you to construct a piece?
That depends. I’ve finished something in one setting, and I’ve had some pieces take over five years.
Where do you get your design inspiration?
From history, I like to investigate various historical art movements and appropriate them using juxtaposition to re-assert their meanings.
What is the best perk in being a designer?
Being able to collaborate with so many amazing people.
What trends do you see being big for 2012?
Accessories are back in a big way. Especially for men, so don’t be afraid to buy that bracelet, ring, necklaces, and go all out. Also, if you work in a more corporate environment, don’t be afraid to lose the polo and dress it up. Nothing beats the vneck, tie, dark jeans, and sneaks combo.
Where can readers buy your clothes?
www.arisenow.com we are still loading products at the moment, so check back next month to see what we have to offer.
What advice do you have for aspiring fashion designers?
Stay within yourself, read about who has gone before you, stay up on what’s trending now, and network, network, network.
What are some of your fashion goals?
I want to move away from basic shirt and clothing design and begin doing more runway stuff.
Where can readers find out more about you and your work?