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Dapper designer

Michelle Jackson, lead designer at Splash, makes clothes for various cultural sensibilities



CONFIDENT COOKIE Michelle Jackson

Michelle Jackson turned heads during the launch of the store, Splash, on M.G. Road recently.

Dressed in a long, multi-coloured spaghetti dress accentuating her well-endowed frame, false eyelashes, heavy eye make up, stilettos and loads of confidence, she drew in more attention than any of the models at the launch.

Born in Tetbury, UK, Michelle always knew in her heart that she wanted to be a designer. “Tetbury is a small town with not much opportunity. You have to come out to establish yourself,” says this 26-year-old designer who then went to London to study fashion and started by designing swimwear and lingerie. After five years she decided not to be in London, and took off to Dubai, where she started designing for Splash, where she is now the design head.

But her journey, recalls Michelle, has not been an easy one.

“People did not take me seriously. Even back home there was a trend of becoming doctors or engineers. So when I said I wanted to be a designer there was a lot of scepticism.”

As a designer it is a challenge to design for the needs of every country and culture.

Giving something new

“As we have Splash in various cities, I have to think of the multiple cultures and put my head in every country, follow each trend closely. And I believe that there will always be a section that will want to try bold and stylish cuts, and one that will want to dress sober. The aim is to give everyone something new for their wardrobe.”

Has she designed something special for Bangalore? “For me design is all about change. Fashion is not something that you get stuck to. There has to be something new and exciting to intrigue a client enough to want to experiment and buy a style.

I don’t think I have any particular style for I change my own look very often. Fashion is about change,” she explains and goes on to add that donning a designer’s mantle is not an easy job either.

“It is a challenge to make something new and yet wearable. To create a style that can be retailed is definitely a big challenge,” says this youngster, who also nurtures a dream of making it to the haute international fashion circuit.

Why did she not consider modelling, with her height and looks? “I did model for a while but got bored of it. I need something that will keep me thinking all the time.

I have to always work on a project with deadlines. Besides, you cannot always be a model. I had to think of my future… and I can design till the end of my life.”

This column features those who choose to veer off the beaten track.

SHILPA SEBASTIAN R.

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