Student Spotlight: Paige Fox

Paige is a Linguistics and Computer Science major will be showing her collection at this year’s fashion show; Sanctuary

What is your sanctuary? 
Sweatpants and a mug of Baileys hot chocolate.

What is the inspiration behind your collection? 
For about a week I got amped over the idea of creating Japanese folk-horror inspired pieces using mens suiting and felted wool. I got inspiration for the collection from the black, wet matted hair that is featured in so many Japanese horror movies and folk tales; it’s revolting and terrifying without resorting to explicit gore. I’ve always let my tacky flag fly on felt, and expressing that concept in felted wool really appealed to me as an opportunity to create more interesting forms and graphics on a garment. My vision for the collection is a very chic and professional base, tailored design in modest/conservative fabrics, which is consumed by these masses of black felted hair.

When did you first start designing/sewing? 

I had a pretty vague concept of design as a kid, but I really started to dig into fashion in the 6th or 7th grade when I became set on making my own clothes. I was definitely coming from a very angsty pre-teen mindset, but I think it was great to get that solipsism out of my system early on. I really loved the idea of taking the preppier middle school cliches and juxtaposing them with darker and more aggressive themes. My mom gave me private sewing and pattern making lessons, and when my teacher retired I actively sought out sewing and designing opportunities wherever I could find them–I insisted on doing the costumes for the school plays, hosted charity sewing groups at my house, and took the evenings and weekends to attend extra classes. I even persuaded my high school band director to mark me present to class every Wednesday, so I could ditch to attend a lingerie design class at a local community college in the afternoon. Eventually, I wound up dropping out of my regular high school completely so I could take more classes at local colleges. One of the classes I took was a human anatomy class with prosecuted cadavers, which really kicked my interest in fashion up into a desire to perform plastic surgery.

What is your favorite part about designing? 

I really enjoy every step of the process, but I guess the most exciting part is the initial research and concept development. It’s best for me to build up a body of knowledge and create a framework of design thinking before diving into the actual design–it makes for a much more satisfying experience. 

How does your major effect your design aesthetic? 
I am going to graduate this quarter with a degree in linguistics and computer science and a minor in Japanese, and each of these things has had a really tremendous impact on my design perspective. My first collection was all biomimetic (hot on the heels of my stint moonlighting as a premed), but my Japanese study has helped me explore ideas I wouldn’t have otherwise had exposure to. For example, several years ago I stumbled upon the Japanese pattern cutting series, Pattern Magic, at a Kinokuniya bookstore, and I’ve spent an inordinate amount of time reading, analyzing, and attempting all of the material from that book series. They’ve since translated the series into English, but having exposure to that kind of design thinking so early in my career had a tremendous impact on how I think about design today. Likewise, my computer science experience has trained me to be more methodical and technical in my design processes. I do a lot of planning for my pieces ahead of time, and if it doesn’t work, I’ll engineer my pattern until it does work. I really don’t like to leave things to chance or just go with it–I need to understand what went wrong and how I can fix it to achieve my vision. 

The Blog Team 

2 thoughts

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.