Shea Steele

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How did you become interested in fashion? Who are some of your inspirations and mentors?

I became interested in fashion as an off-shoot of photography and printmaking. After college, I began to dabble in making garments specifically for collaborative shoots with fellow photographers and it felt like something big right from the start. In 2005 I opened a store called Local Honey in Nashville with the goal of connecting with other designers and artists of all kinds to create a network and resource for exchanging ideas and goods with each other and the community. The first 8 years of LH was a wildly productive period with countless talented and inspirational people, including some of my near and dear Nashville Fashion Week peers.

I'm a firm believer in doing what you can with what you have where you are, thus my mentors and biggest influences have been within this always growing circle of friends. In the past few years living in New York I've expanded into textile design and now produce my own prints and fabrics. This has really opened things up design-wise for me. I've come full circle… firing from all cylinders, and this year I aim to produce my most challenging and multi-faceted collection of work to date.

 

How would you describe your style?

My style is kind of art school cool. I have always bucked trends and moved pretty freely through phases of design just using my inner compass, so it’s hard for me to define my style as anything other than a self-indulgent freestyle. A big motivator for me is keeping fashion in perspective by approaching it in this way and trying to ignore the marketability, which in my opinion is a huge enemy of real creativity. I truly can't work any other way. I let these clothing collections grow and change until they feel right and this goes wherever it goes!

 

Speaking for your brand, what would you most like to say to an LGBT audience?

The LGBT community will always have my unwavering support and respect. We only have one life and being true to ourselves and sharing our voice is the very most important part of human connection. This translates across the board. Put something new into the world instead of repeating what you see around you, otherwise how will your voice matter? It's the brave spirits and innovative minds that change the world.

 

Social media / web links

· Website: sheasteele.com

· Instagram: @sheazerbeam