Fashion is a way to put myself and personality out there for the world to see without getting to know someone super well."- Makaylee Gayed
How would you Describe your brand?
I would say my brand is for the minimalist with a bit of an edge. I don’t typically design things that use too much pattern and just use different textures and techniques that make the design unique. The woman I design for is very powerful on her and just needs that simple, timeless, elegant yet sexy design to put her over the edge. My target market is women from ages 25-40, Very timeless outfits that are sexy yet modest, they show just enough skin to make you feel powerful and sexy. They are employed, independent and in a powerful position which means they are always on the go. I typically really try to focus on day to night outfits. This allows my girl to be able to work during the day but still be able to make a few tweaks to the outfit to make her ready for date night, girls night, charity event or work party that might be later that night.
When did you first realize you wanted to pursue a career in fashion design?
I have been sewing since I was 8 years old for 4H. I didn’t truly realize I wanted to to pursue fashion until I was a sophomore in college. I originally started out at UNL for International Business and I started working retail at Charlotte Russe. I had regular repeat customers always asking me to help them style their outfits and put new outfits together. I really enjoyed styling and also realized I was looking at the different outfits and think about what I could do to change them up or what other fabrics and patterns I would use instead. I started taking Art classes at this time and the teacher told me I had a creative eye and that we actually had a fashion design program that I knew nothing about and that's when I changed my major to Textile, merchandising and Apparel Design.
What is your favorite part about being a designer?
My favorite part of designing is just being able to be creative and imagine new designs in my mind and see them come to love. If I can do anything creative and use my hands I’m in my happy place. I would say the most rewarding thing about being a designer is when you make something for a customer and they get that huge smile on their face and you can tell they just feel great in the outfit that I made for them. It’s a great feeling being able to bring joy and confidence to customers.
How do you stay up to date with current trends in fashion?
I am always on social media. I am constantly reading different articles, watching fashion shows and I follow a lot of designers and bloggers on Instagram to see what new ideas, textiles or techniques people are coming up with.
What are your greatest strength and weakness?
I think my greatest strength is manipulating fabrics to make my own pattern or texture in a garment. I love to utilize color blocking, weaving, painting on fabric and much more to make it my own. My biggest weaknesses are working with patterned textiles, (which is why I’m always manipulating fabric) I don’t use a lot of multiple colors in my designs which is what makes it so difficult for me to use and mix patterns!
What advice would you give your younger self?
Just go with it. When I first started my design degree I was always worried about how I was doing something. Making sure I was putting in a sleeve just the right way or that every little thing was perfect and then I would sit there and worry it wasn’t going to turn out right. Once I got rid of that fear and just started to go with it and not second guess myself my designs started to come out much better and I came up with even more ideas. I was able to get things done much faster and usually no the first try. The more I second guess myself the more mistakes I ended up making. So I would just tell myself from the start to just go with it, experiment more, don’t be afraid to put yourself out there. I would also say to get involved more in the various areas of fashion, in college there's so many other people to meet that are interested in the same things that you are and so many different organization that can really help you meet your goals. You meet people to collaborate with, bounce ideas off of and who can also really become an inspiration or someone that can help you get out of that creative slump.