Jenna Maher, 22, , Fashion Design Student, Paris

Posted by on May 20, 2014 in Your View | No Comments


Jenna Maher Fashion Design Paris


Jenna Maher Fashion Design ParisJenna Maher is a Fashion student from Tennessee, currently living in Paris where she studies BFA Fashion Design. You can contact Jenna at

What is the background of the work you submitted?
These pieces were a part of a four-look capsule collection that all fashion students are required to make in their third year at Paris College of Art. We spent the last month and a half of the school year bringing our conceptual work to life in the design studios. The project had no pre-set theme or requirements other than creating a minimum of three looks. This gave us complete creative reign to see how all of our previous ideas and inspirations could be turned into an actual collection.

For my collection, inspiration was taken from images of the human body replicated in a series of different mirrors. This turned the body into something unrecognisable, making the identity of the person completely anonymous. I was fascinated with this idea of anonymity in mass numbers: a society of unrecognisable faces and images. Which is real and how is it going to be discovered?

With the large sleeveless jacket and the body suit, the patterned pieces are duplicated. I wanted to play with this usage of peeling, to identify new fabrics, discovering more and more of the garment’s construction with the movement of the wearer. The prints I used were bonded to multiple layers, shifted apart slightly to give this blurry, distorted effect.

Jenna Maher Fashion Design ParisWhat inspires you creatively?
I’m very interested in sociology, seeing how people interact with each other or with their city. I often find myself asking strange, hypothetical questions. I think people’s reactions to scenarios helps stimulate my own thoughts and makes me question my own ideas, which as an artist, feeds my need for marginal change (every so often). Even seeing people in the context of where they are standing or working is very inspiring. Seeing people against the backdrop of industrialisation; seeing the lines of their skin next to the lines of something super utilitarian and modern. Faces in particular, facial features have so much to say.

Lately I’ve been looking at photographs by Jacquelyn Martin. Her photos have shown up in numerous articles about albinos living in Tanzania. I found these images and the people in them extraordinarily beautiful.


Jenna Maher Fashion Design Paris


Your favourite film of all times
It is Bernardo Bertolucci’s “The Dreamers”. It takes place in Paris during the student riots of 1968. It is intense and provocative. I would have loved to live in such a passionate era of France as a student.

Your favourite music track or album right now.
Depford Goth’s “Life After Defo”. He has been my favourite artist ever since I accidentally discovered them at a club in Paris two years ago.

Jenna and the View of the roof tops of Paris

Jenna and the View of the roof tops of Paris

Your favourite blog or website for inspiration
The alternative fashion blog Strangely Compeling,I have this site on my Facebook page. They are always posting work from artists and designers that I end up using as a reference in my work. I have made a lot of new discoveries here. The work is always a bit dark, but interesting.

What does Fashion mean to you?
Fashion, for me, is using the body as a canvas to express my inspirations and ideas. It doesn’t technically have to be something wearable on a daily basis, but something that puts your mind in another world when you look at it, that is always my goal.

What is your ideal Fashion Project?
It would be to have a massive collaboration with sculptors, scientists, painters, historians, graphic designers, etc. I don’t know how the project would work but there are so many things I want to portray in my collections; I want everyone to be a part of it. I picture an exhibition puts you in an Alice in Wonderland type-world, where you are looking at all sorts of whimsical objects and trying to connect the dots, totally entranced by the atmosphere.

What is hot or new in the world and/or where you live
Fashion Film. I attended the ASVOFF film festival a couple times and it maybe because it was new to me at the time, but it seems to be popping up everywhere now. Sometimes it is not enough to just have great photographs- having a film can produce much greater effects and speak more powerfully. Back to the subject of my ideal fashion project, this could definitely be one to put down for the future!

How do you imagine your future?
I imagine myself staying in Paris. I would like to do freelance work for a while and collaborate with different artists and designers. I don’t want to be delegated one job; I would like to experience a little bit of everything (illustration, patterning, photography etc.). My dream is to collaborate with Honest By’s Bruno Peiters, more generally I would like to work with a ‘transparent’. I think eco-friendly and honest work is important.

What would be your ideal internship?
My ideal internship would be one where I could travel! Not necessarily from one country to another, but where I am part of the ideas and research. Producing sketchbooks and mood boards with ideas from new places would be perfect!

Images by: Megan Wickens




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