Friday, April 25, 2014

Go Local: Shelby Steiner

We're so excited to be back with another Go Local post!!!! This month's edition calls for the grungy yet minimalistic design aesthetic of Chicago Fashion Incubator resident, Shelby Steiner. This innovative and free-spirited young designer is taking the fashion world by storm only two years after graduating from Columbia College Chicago. She has debuted her works at Fashion Focus Chicago and has won an award for her exhibition at the Art Institute of Chicago. She is also highly praised in numerous Chicago publications (check them out on her press page)! 

Her designs are highly focused on quality, which we got to experience first-hand when we had a chance to shoot this photo story wearing her beautiful works of art. Learn more about the genius that is Shelby Steiner and check out how we styled up these awesome pieces.

Meet Shelby:

What/who inspires you? Why?
Literally everything. I try to combine everything I see, hear, and read into an aesthetically pleasing, functional garment. Influenced by a variety of different subject matters including: menswear, Buddhism, Bob Dylan (and Marley), architecture, and minimalism. 


How is your personal style reflected in your designs?
I like easy to wear garments. Nothing ostentatious, but still interesting. Styling is eclectic in photo shoots, however, you can wear garments however you’d like. 

How did you get your start in fashion design?
I was an apprentice for Norma Langenwalter, a kind soul & seamstress in my rural Iowa town. I then attended Columbia College Chicago and studied Interdisciplinary Arts, focusing on both fashion design and business. 

How would you describe your aesthetic?
Intelligent, casual yet elevated, and thoughtful. 


What is your creative design process? 
It varies day to day. Lots of planning, analyzation of what I like and don’t like by other creators, then execution. Fabrics, concepts, blueprints, then samples. 

When you aren't designing, how do you like to spend your time?
I work two other jobs so that takes up most of my spare time, but I enjoy sleeping, watching documentaries, and reading. 

What advice do you have for aspiring small business entrepreneurs like yourself?
Have a clear vision of who you are, what you stand for, and what you want to accomplish. Accept that whatever you decide to do is a continuous process that requires a significant amount of time. The rest will fall into place with patience and persistence. 

To learn more about Shelby and purchase her pieces go to

Samantha's Look 1: Green High-Low Button Up

Samantha's Look 2: Plaid Flannel and Plaid Printed Crop Top

Shelby is definitely on our designers-to-watch list! Snag some of her work at the up-coming Dose Market on May 11. Her classic, yet stylized silhouettes are definitely pieces to invest in.

Truly Yours,

P.S. "Despite the numerous challenges, there is something so beautiful and pure about passion. Finding a single interest and turning it into your life. " - Shelby Steiner, on her blog

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