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For me, there’s a power to clothing that I don’t quite understand. A great outfit brings me joy, makes me feel at home with myself, and gets me up in the morning. I dreamed of being a fashion designer as a kid — fawning over garments, filling sketch books with inspired ideas, and sewing basic pieces for my dolls. I became disillusioned with the industry, at first, because of its lack of size inclusivity and, later, as I questioned the impacts of my consumerism.

designer amy beard in white sweater and orange pants

My Story

In my mid-20’s, I realized the simplicity of my favorite dress and invested in a $150 Brother sewing machine. I totally lost myself in my first project. I probably ripped more seams than I sewed, but I couldn’t pull myself away for nine hours straight. I’ll never forget the moment when odd shapes started to look like an actual dress and I thought: I can make clothes!

Six months of obsessive sewing later, I enrolled in a six-week pattern making course at the Rhode Island School of Design. That course provided a basic understanding of pattern drafting and opened a whole new world to me. Since then I’ve been experimenting, googling, and refining my technique.

My Approach

As my technical skills expanded, so too did my understanding of textile production and its devastating environmental and humanitarian effects. That’s why, from my small studio in Pawtucket, Rhode Island I practice slow fashion through mending, alterations, and thoughtfully sourced new designs. Responsible sourcing and minimizing waste are prioritized with every project – not because my individual practices will solve the climate crisis or the industry’s reliance on unethical labor, but because I want to illustrate a better future for fashion. Read more about my ideology and projects on my blog.