The Afterglow

A fashion story photographed by Marco Giuliano.

Pretty neon demons dreaming of the origin of the Sun. Playful visions featuring US based fashion brand Meg Beck worn by Ughy, shot by Marco Giuliano and styled by Anca Macavei.

Tell us a bit about your brand. How did it all start?
I studied painting in school, and was making mostly figurative work that dealt with ideas of gender and personal narrative. My senior year, I entered a competition at my college to create a fashion line. It was a bit on a whim, really! I didn’t, at the time, have any experience making clothing. I was thinking it would be more forgiving emotionally and a counterbalance to the difficult subject matter I was working with in other areas of study. I was really happy to find that working directly with and on the body felt extremely intuitive. I felt I could communicate things I’d been thinking about with more ease and directness than in a 2D format. It was also just fun and I loved working on a team for the photoshoots and shows. 
That first line was a concept piece exploring gendered expectations, specifically in the context of adolescent sports culture. I went into that project thinking a lot about this pressure to be very feminine even extending to places where I had hoped to sort of escape that. I think the final result grew to be a more nuanced consideration of my complicated relationship with femininity, but definitely not a rejection of it. 
Being out of an academic setting I feel there’s less pressure for my work to be strictly conceptual, but my pieces still have that foundation. With my garments now, I feel there is more room for play. Not to say that fashion is unserious!

How would you describe your aesthetic?
My aesthetic tends to be borderline renaissance fair, cyber fairy, vaguely goth, and tinged with 90’s nostalgia. I’ve always been very into textures found in nature like moss and plant/flower structures. As a kid I was really obsessed with creating different fairy characters that all had their own element and style that embodied different forces of nature. So I’d say my aesthetic has a definite element of fantasy.

Your garments are quite fresh and innovative, where does the inspiration for your collections derive from?
I really look up to designers who have a strong sense of artistic identity and craftsmanship, and who focus much more on those things than seasonal trends. A lot of my favorites are dropping the seasonal model altogether. I’m also immensely inspired and motivated by my peers – other small designers working out of their bedroom. The clothes I wore growing up are pretty influential as well.

The make-up and hair from your previous shows and photoshoots are very striking. Does the beauty part of your collection share the same vision as the garments?

Yes, definitely! I love having a hand in every step of the process of creating a look, even beyond making the clothes. My favorite hair and makeup looks usually involve plants. 


Your garments involve a lot of detail and construction, which one do you feel has been your hardest piece?

I’m self-taught so each piece is generally teaching myself something or involves researching a new technique, which can be difficult. But that will always be an ongoing process and never stop, really. 
Because each batch of fabric I work with is usually repurposed or vintage, adjusting to different textures and understanding how to work with a type of fabric that is new to me can be challenging as well.
 A lot of the detail is simply repetition, which builds on itself into something elaborate. The hardest part, I think, is keeping track of the layers – especially when they get very dense! 


Are there any future plans or projects for the brand that you want to share with us?

Right now everything is made by me, but maybe someday I’ll work with a small team. At the moment, I work in small batches of one off pieces. My collections usually start with a fresh batch of found fabrics and me figuring out what design and textural elements I want to focus on. I just got some bins of vintage fabrics I’m really excited about – a lot of plaid wool, tulle netting, felt, and some nylon utility rope, so I think my next collection is going to involve a lot of corsetry and deconstructed/fabricated plaids involving these materials. 
I want to keep making exclusive collections for shops that emphasize small independent artists like myself, and slow fashion production models. I also want to further explore collaborating with performers. I love working with musicians/performers and creating something together that feels authentic to what they’re communicating through their own craft.

The Afterglow

Credits:

Photography: Marco Giuliano / @marcogiulianoph
Styling: Anca Macavei / @ancamacavei
Fashion: Meg Beck / @megbeckstudio
Editorial assistant: Inga Lavarini / @ilavarini
Interview: Maylyn Bertorelli / @twiggymay
Soundtrack: Battery Operated Orchestra – Kakehashi-san
Model: Ughy / @ughy.lit

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