Spotlight Series: STEPHEN STREET
This week we are so excited to feature Stephen Street, an inspiring SCAD Fashion Designer with an incredible story. From interning at some of the most well-known fashion houses in the country, to designing unique and visually stunning pieces, Stephen’s story is one you do not want to miss! Check out our exclusive interview with Stephen here.
Tell us a little bit about yourself! Where are you from? What drew you to fashion?
My name is Stephen Street and I’m from Johnson City, Tennessee! I’m a junior at Savannah College of Art and Design as a fashion design major. I’ve been drawn to fashion pretty much since I was a child. My mother was a buyer and owned her own specialty shop for 20 years and has always been involved with fashion. That being said, I’ve always had a major fashion influence in my life. I started pursuing fashion for myself when I was about 12 and now here I am!
I just have to say, Deadly Nightshade is absolutely stunning! What was the process like from design to creation?
Well Deadly Nightshade was my first real gown I ever made. It was initially the scariest thing I’ve ever done. I first draped the fabric and created my form and then dyed the fabric to create the movement it needed. Then I embellished all over the fabric with broken glass mirror pieces creating a shimmering and crystalized look also adding to the movement of the gown. I still love that look to this day and had the perfect team to carry out the look with Laura Beckerdite as the photographer, Esther Blair for hair and makeup, and Olivia Ewing as the model that brought the dress to life.
Your work is incredible! What has been your favorite project to work on?
Thank you! That’s means so much. When you’re constantly having to be creative you sometimes lose track of what you enjoy doing. That being said, when you come across a project you love, it makes it ten times easier. I recently have been working extremely hard outside of my classes on a project for an upcoming opportunity. It’s a collection based off Studio 54 and my mother, Jane. The concept itself really rings in with my aesthetic and what I enjoy doing so I would say right now that project has been one of my favorites to work on.
Where do you get your main inspiration?
I draw inspiration from everything! You have to in order to constantly create in my opinion. I feel as if you should never limit what you let inspire and move you because then you just limit yourself.
You have worked with Diane von Furstenberg and Ralph Lauren- that’s amazing! What were your experiences like?
Well I was 16 when I interned at DVF and it’s honestly such a blur at this point. Not because it wasn’t completely incredible, but because when you’re 16 working practically a full time job and living in New York City by yourself it feels a bit unreal. I learned so much at DVF and gained amazing mentors out of my bosses as well as the man who hired me, Neil Gilks.
I was 18 when I worked at Ralph Lauren. This was the summer before I started at SCAD as a freshmen and was the perfect opportunity. I learned so much there and worked with some amazing teams. Ralph Lauren really showed me how everything worked. We would all work so hard. When you’re an intern there they treat you like an employee. You have to work hard but you are always recognized for the work you put in. My first day we went to about 8 design meetings. Imagine me an 18 year old from Tennessee trying to run around with my notepad aimlessly righting down stuff I didn’t even know existed hahaha. You quickly catch on, and when you do its incredible. I would definitely say both of these companies shaped me for the next opportunities in my life and have helped me during my years at SCAD thus far.
What are some of your favorite textiles to work with?
I love working with wool, cotton, tech fabrics etc. If I’m being completely honest, I love working with cheap fabrics I can turn into chic fabrics. A professor at of mine at SCAD recently said “It doesn’t matter how cheap the fabric is, the only thing that ever matters is what you do with it.”
How has your experience been at SCAD? What have you learned there that you weren’t expecting to?
I love SCAD. I’ve learned so much and this school has taught me a huge deal of what I know. My freshmen year wasn’t the best. After going from working at Ralph Lauren to a freshmen in college, you feel a bit jagged. Reentering into the real world after great experiences is hard for anyone. That along with my disinterest for foundation classes; I had deciding I wanted to leave SCAD and try to pursue my career. Luckily I decided to try out another year at SCAD and it was the best decision I’ve ever made. I learned so much and fell in love with my work and the fashion community I was surrounded with and still am.
When scrolling through your Instagram, it’s clear to see you have such a focused aesthetic, how do you keep it so consistent, and how did you define it?
I think consistency on Instagram really comes down to knowing your aesthetic. You need to define yourself and show the world what you want to see. I would define my Instagram as artistic, innovative, unique, stylish, and cohesive. I want people to feel as if they are following me through my day to day life, however just a little bit more beautiful than reality.
What do you see yourself doing in the future?
I’d like to have at least three interviews lined up for jobs by my last spring quarter at SCAD. Is that going to happen? Who knows! After SCAD I’d love to work for a company as a designer or assistant designer for up to 5-7 years, then eventually leave and start my own label, Stephen Street.
Any advice for aspiring fashion designers?
You’re going to doubt yourself a lot. I mean A LOT. But you can never let it keep you from doing what you love. You also can’t ever let yourself lose track of what you love. Constantly remind yourself of who you are and where you want to be and what drove you to a career in this field. And always remind yourself that if the seams don’t match up, snip it and move on because tomorrow is a new day, a new garment, and a new life to make extraordinary.
Stephen’s work and all of his amazing opportunities are so incredibly inspiring. We cannot wait to hear where he goes next. Be sure to check out & follow his Instagram @stephen_street_.
And be sure to follow us on Instagram @designUgram and Snapchat @designUsnap to see what we’re up to…