Featured Designer: Kelly Reddy-Best December 11, 2013
Descience is very pleased to welcome aboard Kelly Reddy-Best; scholar, activist, talented designer and assistant professor of apparel design at San Francisco State University. The first to apply when registration opened on Monday, Kelly inspires us with her enthusiam and killer portfolio. Her work is a wonderful illustration of fashion as medium for communicating important ideas and generating a conversation.
We asked Kelly to walk us through her creative process:
“I love designing for a good cause and promoting awareness of social injustices! It’s what really inspires and motivates me. For this design, The Emotions of Rape, I wanted to remind everyone that there are tons of unreported sexual assault and rape cases that occur each year because the victims are too scared or embarrassed to talk about it or to come forward. This design translates the emotional and traumatic stories of rape and sexual assault victims into a visual display on the body.
I first found anonymous stories online of brave victims who came forward in a safe space to share their experiences."
"I then made a mind map of some of their words such as blank, scared, unsure, and weighed down. After that I began sketching – tons of sketching! I finally decided on the look you see in the images. Although I must admit, when I began draping and executing the design some of the details in my sketches didn’t exactly pan out as I had originally thought they would."
"I searched around for materials to use and I found a huge box of discarded white elastic in the design studio I was working in and utilized it both for its color to relate to the individual’s feelings of “blankness” and also because the box was “left behind.” I chose a large voluminous skirt silhouette to represent the overpowering feeling victims may experience. I left the strings dangling because they might become twisted and tangled as someone walks in the garments, similar to the everyday experiences some victims navigate as they continue on with their everyday lives. Throughout the entire process, I kept revisiting my inspiration to stay connected and motivated by these inspiring individuals!"
"I am excited to participate in Descience because the research posted by the scientists was super inspiring and I hope I can spread the word about some of the findings that might make a difference in people’s lives!”