I've been buying quite a few books on fashion designers lately. I think its fascinating to see where fashion designers went to school and the places they draw inspiration from. Most of the big name fashion designers of today got their education from Parsons in New York. Its inspiring to read about the Mulleavy sisters of Rodarte who graduated with non-fashion degrees from Berkeley. After getting their bachelors, they taught themselves to sew and put together a small 10 piece collection. Then they took a huge risk and took their collection to New York. There they had their pieces shown on the cover of Women's Wear Daily and had a meeting with Anna Wintour herself. The rest is awe-inspiring fashion history.
While I know most cases are not similar to the Mulleavy sisters' meteoric rise to success (they won the 2009 CFDA award for womenswear designer of the year and got to create the amazing costumes in The Black Swan), their story gives me the drive to keep pursuing fashion. Even if it isn't the degree I graduate with, no piece of paper is going to keep me from working hard and trying my best to get into this industry anyway.
The Mulleavy sisters sited the Monterey Bay Aquarium of their hometown in northern California as one of their greatest inspirations. After visiting the aquarium myself a few weeks ago, I can really see how the experience influenced their collections. There really is a whole other world that exists in the sea. Under the water lies bright colors only seen in these types of life, ghostly floating organisms unimaginable, and beautiful textures and lines usually hidden from human eyes.
I normally hate jellyfish from an experience I had on the beach in Florida once, but behind glass there are absolutely gorgeous. Jellyfish don't have brains. Literally. They only have a central nervous system so they can't consciously think, they can only react. Seems like a sad existence, but because they have no ability to comprehend, they don't hide from viewers in the aquarium. So visitors like myself can soak in their breathtaking beauty. Their tentacles floating by like intricate lace. Their bodies ghostly transparent and rhythmically moving. I can definitely see their influence on a stunning fashion line like Rodarte.