Tag Archives: fashion design

Wednesdays With Friendsdays- Joseph Segal

13 Apr

Today’s interview is with one of my favorite people in Providence, Joseph Segal!  Joe makes clothing too and I absolutely love his work.   Joe and I have done a couple collaborations before were he’s printed his amazing kitty print onto fabric for me to make into dresses.  We also have a shoe collaboration in the works so stay tuned for that!

Tell us a little bit about yourself:

Hey! My name is Joseph Segal (you can call me Joe) and I’m so happy to be here for “friendsday wednesday”!
So, some stuff about me….. I’m 29 years old and grew up in the burbs of Framingham, Mass. After high school, I went to college at Umass, Amherst where I studied painting, and then moved to NYC until I realized I wanted to go to grad school! I now live in Providence, Rhode Island after completing my masters degree in textile design at RISD in 2009. Currently I’m a fashion and textile designer and I also teach at RISD. I have two brands, JAS (Joseph Aaron Segal) and Pretty Snake. JAS is a mostly a knitwear brand that I sell at Assembly New York and HaNNa in Tokyo, Japan. I’m obsessed with machine knitting and make all of my knits in my studio. Pretty Snake is more a print oriented brand that I sell on Etsy and some boutiques around the US. Pretty Snake is mostly known for my crazy cat sweaters, see family pic below :).

How did you meet Kelly?:
I met Kelly mostly from Providence being such a small city! We have mutual friends who would always tell me “You have to meet Kelly, you would love her” or like “Kelly loves cats…. you love cats,  you should totally be friends!!” Yes, its all so true, but what really sealed the deal for me was when we discovered our mutual love for Swedish pop music!

What do you like about knitwear over other art forms:
I love making knitwear because with a knitting machine and yarn I am able to invent an original fabric and garment shape. I love the freedom of choosing any texture and color of yarn and then turning it into a fabric of my choice. On the knitting machine i can build texture, pattern and form into the fabrics.  I’m definitely more textile oriented than apparel , so it’s important that my fabric informs my fashion designs.
Are you glad you majored in art at a liberal arts school rather than going to an art school?:
To be totally honest, I  have mixed feelings about going to liberal arts school for my undergrad. I feel like I needed more time to decide what I wanted to study before going to college, but my family really put the pressure on to jump right in. I am super thankful though for the friends I made in undergrad! Because umass was not sooooo demanding we had a lot of time to bond and hang out. Some of my best friends for the past 11 years are from umass! I also loved living in Northampton mass. It exposed me to lots of cool music and art. I did a lot of adventuring and I was obsessed with antiquing on my way to the MassMOCA museum.
What are you favorite and least favorite parts about teaching?:
I’m so happy that risd offered me a teaching position. I am filling in for one of my favorite teachers who is on sabbatical and currently teach ” industrially knitted fabrics” ( an advanced class) and ” machine knitting” ( an introductory class). I love both classes because in one i teach the manual knitting machine which i use daily, and in the other i teach knit programming which is the produced on a huge computerized knitting machine beast! All  of my students so far have been so motivated and talented that at first it took me a while to feel confident that I was capable of giving good advice them. After seeing how awesome the work was at the end of my first semester teaching, I became more comfortable trusting myself to give critiques. I’ve been really enjoying being in the school environment because sometimes after days of working in my studio I get kind of lonely!
I think it’s so awesome that you sell your stuff in Japan. Can you tell us about that?:
I am soooooo thankful that HaNNa, a boutique in japan started ordering my collections. I love the Japanese market because they love color! They are also really excited about unconventional forms and one of a kind pieces. Everything I made for about a year was black and gray because that was all NYC wanted, but for japan I really get to freak out on color!! My last JAS collection was definitely intended to be sold in Europe and japan. I don’t see too many new yorkers wanting a fitted white and yellow striped pile knit wool mock turtle neck. Sadly.

Where we’d find you on a friday night:
On a Friday night I’m most likely silk screening stuff in my basement, posting stuff on Etsy, and then drinking mimosas at the Duck and Bunny. Come visit!

Celebrity you’d most like to meet/ dress:
I totally want to meet and dress Macaulay Culkin, Michael Pitt, and Shannen Doherty. I’m not so sure they would want my stuff though……

Favorite Drink:
Favorite Drink:My favorite drink these days is a Corpse Reviver (equal parts gin, countreau, lemon juice, and lillet. add 3 drops absinthe. shake vigorously and serve with lemon twist and cherry) YUM!

Most embarrassing moment:
One time my friends were talking about all the geo prisms outside and I honestly thought they were speaking of some sort of natural phenomenon, not the car! haha

Favorite things about where you live:
I love living in Rhode Island because there’s tons of my favorite things here: antiques, craft materials, fabric, abandoned buildings, ghosts and beaches. I’m always really inspired here.

If you had a million dollars, how would you spend it?
If I had a million dollars, I would buy an industrial computerized knitting machine! Then I’d buy a Toyota FJ cruiser and drive to Malibu.


Jay Jay Johanson
Sonic Youth
Black Sabbath

Jean Charles de Castelbajac
Gareth Pugh
Moonspoon Saloon
Rei Kawakubo
Jeremy Scott

TV Shows:
Beverly Hills 90210
RuPauls Drag Race
Celebrity Apprentice (i dont know why still)
Tales from the Crypt
Paranormal State

The Fourth Kind
Funny Games


Thanks Joe!

You can find Joe here:

Etsy Shop

Facebook Fan Page




Physics and Fashion

7 Apr

QUESTION: how do you stay focused and positive when there’s a lot of students and competition going around? I’m just starting as a fashion design student and not all the people are friendly and nice in my classes :/

ANSWER: I asked my assistant, Liz for her opinion and it sparked a great conversation.  As girls in our mid 20’s we both feel the same way and we know where you are coming from. College can be tough, especially with the fashion industry and there are a lot of girls who are catty!  We both agreed that as we grew older we naturally became much more confident. Certain people are just jerks; it’s always easier to be a “hater” who criticizes everyone instead of making something on your own. Either way, I think the best thing to do is focus on working hard designing things that make YOU proud and happy. In the end that will be enough inspiration to keep designing!

QUESTION: did or do you ever want to be a really big and famous fashion designer?
for example- chanel, prada, betsey johnson, dior, etc

ANSWER: I never necessarily think of it in that way, or as something I absolutely need to do but… I do love working and pushing myself to be as successful as possible.  I love my life now and I think that I am very lucky to be able to do something that I love so much all day long.  Plus, the girls that work with me are a lot more than employees, they have become great friends and work is always fun.  I would like to eventually make the transition from a handmade line to having things produced… but I like the idea of building my line from the ground up, so when that transition comes it will be natural.

QUESTION: do you have any advice to give someone if they have clothes they really like and want to wear, but they care too much of other people’s opinions, they don’t have enough confidence, and they’re afraid people in school will think they’re outfit is ridiculous?

ANSWER: I totally feel you on this one! I’ve had lots of moments where I’ve felt like I needed to tone myself down, because I don’t want to look like a spectacle.  I could say something generic like “be yourself and wear what ever you want to wear!!” but honestly, I don’t even do that myself.  In providence, I pretty much wear what ever I want and with the places that I go, people appreciate it and I always feel comfortable.  Although my family’s from Connecticut, so when I come home to visit I don’t usually dress the same way I would here.  I hate being stared at, and even if i wear something no one would look twice at here (except because they think i look cute!) I feel like everyone is staring at me in a conservative small town because I look a tiny bit different from what they are used to.  So I would say, when you’re with your friends and going out, dress however you want to!  For something like school, you could pair things you think are a little bit over the top with more “normal stuff” so that you are still doing your own style but you don’t feel uncomfortable.  Like I said before, I remember having the same feelings in high school and college, and trust me, as you get older you will start to feel a lot more comfortable and confident.

QUESTION: Hi Kelly, Can you tell me why the electron doesn’t spiral into the positively charged core of an atom? I thought these guys were supposed to be attracted to each other? – Anonymous for Physics

ANSWER: Well, even though some things seem like they’re meant to be, I guess the universe works in mysterious ways. I’ve seen totes random relationships where the “attraction” is mind boggling! But seriously, if things are spiraling out of control then you know it’s time to address the core issue; has this Adam really found his Eve? I found my Adam but this electronic connection isn’t always easy to find!

Thanks to everyone who submitted a question!  If I didn’t get to yours today, check back next week.   You can use the tumblr and formspring links to the right to submit questions anonymously!