WORKING GIRL : TIENA GWIN

We’re doing work we love, work that inspires us, and we’re also pursuing our passions and making them priorities. In our latest Working Girl series, I sat down for a little girl talk with my talented friend and fashion BFF designer of T I E N A, Tiena Gwin.  Meet Tiena ....

Andrea Fenise Memphis Fashion Blogger Working Girl Series featuring Tiena Gwin of T I E N A 

feature story photographed and styled by Andrea Fenise

HOW DO YOU THINK WORKING IN A CREATIVE INDUSTRY CONTRIBUTES TO SOME OF THE WORLD’S BIGGER CONVERSATIONS AND WHAT ROLE IS YOUR WORK PLAYING IN THIS SHIFT IN THINKING? 

  I really had to think about this question.  Times have really changed since we were younger.  Back then, you really didn't have a clue about fashion, it seemed like this grandiose industry that you had no way of making a mark in. But now with social media, the internet, and local communities saying we have fashion in our town and its not just in New York or L.A..  Today , you can do research on the industry and create your own platform for your work and start where you are with what you have.  Hence, the whole independent artist movement and maker movement.   

HOW DO YOU THINK WORKING IN A CREATIVE INDUSTRY CONTRIBUTES TO SOME OF THE WORLD’S BIGGER CONVERSATIONS AND WHAT ROLE IS YOUR WORK PLAYING IN THIS SHIFT IN THINKING? 

  I really had to think about this question.  Times have really changed since we were younger.  Back then, you really didn't have a clue about fashion, it seemed like this grandiose industry that you had no way of making a mark in. But now with social media, the internet, and local communities saying we have fashion in our town and its not just in New York or L.A..  Today , you can do research on the industry and create your own platform for your work and start where you are with what you have.  Hence, the whole independent artist movement and maker movement.   

Andrea Fenise Memphis Fashion Blogger features Tiena Gwin for Working Girl Series 

DO YOU HAVE ANY UNEXPECTED SOURCES OF CREATIVE INSPIRATION, IF SO WHAT ARE THEY?

Nature is a huge source of inspiration for me.  Seeing bugs or leaves always makes me think of prints for fabrics, I would like to create.  Also, the interior fabrics inspire me a great deal.  

WHAT IS ONE QUESTION YOU WISH PEOPLE ASKED YOU MORE OF? 

      What does it take to make a garment from scratch (from idea to completed garment)? 

Andrea Fenise Memphis Fashion Blogger Working Girl Feature with Tiena Gwin 

WHAT ARE 5 OF YOUR DAILY HABITS? 

There are two things that I do everyday and that is I read my bible when I first wake up and I pray.   

HOW WOULD YOU ADVISE WOMEN WHO ARE MAKERS, CREATIVE/FASHION PROFESSIONALS OR PEOPLE IN GENERAL TO LEAVE IN AN IMPRINT IN THE DIGITAL WORLD JUST BY DOING WHAT THEY LOVE?

I would advise women to not worry about perfection, to start where you are because you can still connect with others on some level and to let people go on the journey with you to getting to where you want to be.  And not to compare yourself to others on social media.  

Andrea Fenise Memphis Fashion Blogger Working Girl Series Tiena Gwin 
Andrea Fenise Memphis Fashion Blogger Working Girl Series Tiena Gwin

IF YOU COULD MAKE A GARMENT FOR 3 PEOPLE WHO WOULD THEY BE, AND WHY AND HMMMM WHAT TYPE OF DESIGN ELEMENT WOULD YOU USE?

 1. Tracee Ellis Ross -- I love her style and I think her style is most reflective of my personal style. I would like to mix prints with a very unique silhouette

  2. Solange Knowles -- I also love her style and would like to create a colorful, structured piece.

 3. Leslie Jones--I was so saddened when designers didn't want to work with her for a red carpet look.  I would love to make a piece that is ultra-feminine that will show her in a way that she is not typically seen. 

WHERE DO YOU SEE YOURSELF AS A BRAND, TIENA GOING INTO THE FUTURE?

 I see T I E N A as a recognizable brand that is sustainable and on its way to being a forever company.   

HOW DOES YOUR CURRENT WORK INFLUENCE YOUR PERSONAL STYLE?

 Really, its the reverse my current work is the core of who I am.  

feature story photographed and styled by Andrea Fenise

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