Whitney Manney is a young designer with bold designs and eclectic taste. She is a full time designer/owner for her brand WHITNEYMANNEY. She also works at a local dance studio as the office manager. She graduated from the Kansas City Art Institute in 2012 with a BFA in Fibers.
In five years Whitney Manney she sees her brand expanding. The plan for
is to remain independently owned. The label will eventually be sold in stores nationwide.
will have a permanent studio/showroom where there will be in-house seamstresses, photographers, stylists, marketing teams, etc. with plenty of creative space. There is no stopping Miss Whitney Manney and her brand
Keep reading to learn a little bit more about the lady behind the brand.
What was your motivation behind starting your blog, business, career, etc.?
I always knew I was going to be an artist of some type at an very early age, and like most artists I was good with various mediums. Around the age of 13, I became interested in fashion. I taught myself to sew through deconstruction and went from there. The more I started to learn and perfect my craft the more I fell in love with the art of fashion. I used to sell remade denim skirts and handmade purses in high school! I loved the idea of supporting myself from something that came from my own mind and the work of my hands. Also, my parents were both entrepreneurs and I have several family members who are business owners so it runs in my blood.
What does confidence mean to you?
Confidence to me means putting together the first look that I spot in my closet no matter how bright or "crazy" it may be, putting on the brightest pink lipstick, loving my natural hair, 4 inch heels and walking out the door with my head held high and not feeling ashamed at all. The foundation scripture of my label is Proverbs 31:25 '…strength and honor are her clothing' I apply that not only to my design work but in everyday life. Dignity and respect are two qualities that I like to carry with me in everyday life.
What is your biggest dream or aspiration?
To be on the cover of Vogue. A designer hasn't been on the cover yet, I don't think…but I may start something.
What fashion story describes you in a nutshell?
I like to stay comfortable and wear a look that I can change a few of the pieces and go from one thing to another. Any given day I can wake up early go to a shoot or meeting for the label, rush to work then get off and have to go to an event or spend time in studio.
A mini skater skirt, a pair of my Chroma Flux hand dyed tights, pair of knee highs (polka dot are my have) graphic print oversize crop tee, hoodie, denim or leather jacket/vest, pair of Chucks (keep a pair of heels or ankle boots in the car haha) scarf and tons of accessories.
Photo Credit: Amber Joivon for Style in the Loop/STLFW
How would you describe your overall style?
My personal style is pretty had to put in words. I look at every new day as a chance to be a new person, present a different aspect of my personality. I have a really mix & match sense to my style. That applies to colors, patterns, textures, everything! It's definitely bold, bright and hard to ignore.
If you had to pick 1 item from your closet to describe you as a person, what would it be?
Probably my remixed denim jacket. Bleached, dyed, airbrushed, leather sleeve goodness
Who is your favorite designer? Why?
I can't say that I have a specific favorite. Right now, I would have to say Mary Katrantzou…she was the designer that inspired me to push my textile designs to another level.
Who are you trying to reach with your work?
One of the biggest reasons I became a designer is because I saw it as a chance to be the person that I really wanted to be, who I felt that I was on the inside. Fear of what people would think and honestly low self-esteem kept me from being me for years, once I started developing my work I began living through my garments. I had to challenge myself to embrace my individuality and stop trying to fit in, it was just never working for me! In my artist statement I say that we create work with a woman in mind who is not afraid to express her individuality in everything she does, leaving the role of being average to the rest of the world…I still hold firm to that.
What makes your work or brand different from your peers?
My fabric! I design all of the fabric that I use for my garments whether it's hand dyed, screen print, airbrushed or digitally manipulated. I think designers who create their own fabric and design the garments have a really special gift in comparison to other designers. It's more than just creating a pattern and making yardage for the pieces, each pattern is perfectly mapped to the body to create the perfect form.
What career advice do you have for
Take criticism with a grain of salt. Analyze what people are saying, decide what applies to you but don't let it change your artistic style completely. Don't be afraid to lose things over your career: time, sleep, friends..whatever. If you really want to make in life, then you should be willing to get it done within respectful boundaries of course.
How can TheeFashionStories readers contact you?
You can email me at email@example.com
Follow my tag on Instagram #whitneymanney
Follow our fan page
Whitney thank you for sharing more about yourself with
readers. Your pieces in KC Fashion Week caught my eye and I knew that I wanted to interview you. Your positive attitude and out of this world designs are going to open up so many more doors for you. This interview was a pleasure and I look forward to seeing your future successes.