Madaleine Nelson, a Canadian fashion and textile print designer on the rise, known for creating fun and playful clothing with a feminine twist that is always body inclusive.
24FASHION.TV: When did you first realize you wanted to pursue a career as a fashion designer?
Madaleine Nelson: When I was around 11 years old, I used to draw sketches of dresses in my notepads or in a sketchbook. If I listened to a song I really liked I would sketch a dress for the celebrity to wear in the music video that I made up in my head. I realized that I cared about what other people were wearing and I started talking more about being a designer to my friends and family. Thats when it first really hit me that I could do it professionally.
Where do you usually find creative inspiration?
Usually I find inspiration through having fun and observing the world around me. I love being in nature so that really inspires me to look at small details, such as dandelion petals, any flower pretty much, bark, and so on. Having fun inspires me to not design anything too serious, always keep it playful and a bit organic. Going with the flow is important to how I design since I will change my mind so many times!
Full outfit designed by Madaleine Nelson
How is working in fashion different today than from when you started out?
When I started out I was really naive about how everyone would act towards each other. I really struggled to get a job and even when I started university I was a bit shocked at how catty it could get. Now Ive learned that you have to take harsh criticism with a grain of salt because fashion is an art form and everyone has different tastes.
Social Media plays a HUGE role in fashion nowadays. If you dont have a decent following, people aren't going to pay attention to what you're doing, no matter how good it may be! Practically everyone is on social media, so its a great way to see what others are doing, but it can also extinguish your own creativity.
How was your brand affected by the Covid-19 lockdown?
My brand was actually officially created during the lockdown. Before Covid-19, I was doing freelance work and thinking that I wasnt able to start my own brand. But with Covid-19 I had the motivation to start making masks and make money through my own work. Obviously Covid-19 has not been a fun time for people, but without the lockdown I dont think I wouldve been where I am today!
Dress designed by Madaleine Nelson
Did you have to adjust your collection and make some changes to it because of Coronavirus?
So in November I have a small three outfit collection coming out, but in 2021 Im releasing two collections! One is going to be a revamped version of the collection I already have (that isnt for sale yet) and the other is going to be a brand-new one. With Covid-19, it hasnt made me change my collections, but it has given me the opportunity to brainstorm more ideas.
What do you think about sustainable fashion? Should fashion be more sustainable?
I love sustainable fashion! I worked for a brand called Cassandra Elizabeth where everything made there is with sustainable fabrics and its all gender-neutral! I loved working there and honestly that showed me that being sustainable isn't unattainable! Fashion can be more sustainable, but people dont want to put in the time and money to do it! I try to be as sustainable as possible, I like to use my fabric scraps, use natural fabrics (when available) and I try to avoid fast fashion, by buying pieces that will stay in my wardrobe longer.
Dress designed by Madaleine Nelson
What is your favorite part about being a designer?
My favorite part about being a designer is seeing people wear what I have made. It makes me feel so happy and seeing them love it honestly could bring a tear of joy to my eye!
How do you want women/men to feel when wearing your clothes?
When women/men wear my clothes I want them to feel unique, playful and bold. I want people to express themselves as authentically as possible when wearing my designs, no matter their size or gender identity.
Can you shortly describe your brand?
Madaleine Nelson is a bridge luxury fashion and textile design brand that creates fun, feminine and colorful clothing and textiles. With a focus on textiles, everything is designed with an intention of being stylish, bold and accessible.
What comes next for Madaleine Nelson?
Madaleine Nelson is on the rise! I have so many ideas its hard for me to sit down and relax after one project is done because I just want to keep going! With my small collection coming out soon, I dont think people will expect it, but its a gentle taster of what's to come in the future. I went with textiles that matched fall the best, but with my own spin. Im so looking forward to future collections and my future in general!
By Galina Antonova,
Editor-in-Chief, 24Fashion TV