An Interview with Halifax Designer, Maggie Jayne
Welcoming Maggie Jayne to the Sattva collection! We are so in love with Maggie, her clothing and how she operates her business. We interviewed her so you can love it too!
What is the best thing about being in Halifax?
What is the one thing you can’t live without?
What’s your favourite colour?
What have you learned about being a designer?
What’s your favourite thing to eat?
“Burgers (I don’t know if that’s true)”
What is one place in the world you would like to visit?
“I want to go to India, I want to keep going back there”
What is your favourite thing to do on Saturday night?
Three words to describe yourself:
“Creative, scattered, sensitive”
What are you known for?
“In Halifax, making clothes”
What do you do in your spare time?
“Hangout with my friends”
Who/What inspires you?
“Thoughtful people, mostly. That’s the thing about Halifax that’s really cool. I am inspired by the people who choose to stick around and come up with purpose. Anyone who gets really deep into what they’re doing, thinks critically about it and finds ways towards doing that thing in least negative way possible. I’m really inspired by people who are taking time to make space for other people."
Who do you design for? Who do you want to see in your clothes?
“Well, at first I design for myself. Somebody recently described my aesthetic as 80’s baby clothes."
How do you feel about that?
"I liked it! I think it made a lot of sense.
But, I want to see everybody in my clothes. One thing I haven’t been able to do yet and I would like to do more, is let women who aren’t in their 20s (like my models) know that these clothes are also for them. I would really like to see women all the way up into their 70s wearing them. Especially the colourful clothes.”
How are your clothes eco/ethical?
"I’m on a journey right now towards figuring out what ethical means and what eco means. Moving towards that place I am getting involved in as many of the steps of production as I can access, I’m able to see where the clothes are produced and by who. Right now, the bottom line is just knowing who’s making the clothes. I am using mostly natural fibers and the next step for my business which you will specifically be seeing in my fall collection, is being able to tell you where the fabric comes from. This collection, all of the pink stripes are block printed by a family, and I visited their factory. They are in their 3rd generation of doing this, I think that is cool.
I’m just learning, and eventually I will figure out whether or not what I’m doing is eco friendly.”
“India was a bit of an accident. Me and my friend Sarah were just going on a trip and I just stumbled into a town where everyone seemed to be into manufacturing. So I was able to just tag along for factory visits. And I knew going to India I would discover some textiles and originally I had hoped to find block printing – I just followed that intuition. Now India! There’s so many other places in the world where you can get textiles but there’s so much in India and I’m starting to make connections and the doors are opening for me so I’m gonna keep going.”
If you could change one thing about the fashion industry what would it be?
“I think I could just hope that it would slow down a little bit. There are options to do things slower and I’m always concerned about not being able to meet the timelines. People expect to see everything change in the store after a certain period of time. What I do like is that people are spending more money on less pieces of clothing. Especially my demographic who don’t have a lot of disposable income. They are willing to buy a statement piece that’s half their month’s rent and only buy that. I think that is pretty cool. It seems like people want more of a connection to what they’re buying.”
Tell us about your workspace:
“I moved into a new space two days ago! It’s so great! Its actually a shed in my boyfriend’s backyard and it is two small rooms – I painted it white with pink trim on the windows because it’s only boys that live inside, so I wanted to have my own little feminine zone. Outside there’s flowers and a nice garden. I don’t know exactly what its going to look like but lots of white, a big table. I think its really important for me to keep my space organized. One thing I really like in my studio is to colour coordinate all of the fabric. I’m not an organized person so, its starting there. Its really fun.”
Do you want to stay in Halifax?
“Yeah I want to be here!"
You seem passionate about India…Even the fabric construction…
“Yeah! I’m most fascinated by what colours people choose to paint their houses and the way that people dress. Ritual is important, everyone tells me to slow down all of the time, which I also appreciate. Everything is possible, everyone always says “yes”. I get access to everything. Somebody spends the whole day with me showing me around a factory, I have lunch with the owner, the owner drives me home. I wouldn’t have access to that in Canada.
I see some potential of partnerships in India, especially with this new organic cotton company”.