In one word, Chickey describes her line as “unique” in which t-shirts are the main focus. Chickey chose this wardrobe staple as her main item because “t-shirts are so basic. If you ask anyone, they’ll tell you they have dozens. People collect them as a sort of souvenir and pass them on through the generations.” She also likes that they are a “go-to” piece for anyone. A person can dress them up with a blazer or dress them down for a night out to the movies. Chickey also feels that “they are the perfect things for people to see. How many times a day are you standing there looking at someone’s shirt? They can be so impactful. That is why I think they are the perfect item to sell.”
Courtney’s inspiration for her designs and style comes from all areas: fashion designers, filmmakers, actors, artists, musicians, and comic book artists. So many people inspire her including Jeremy Scott, Alexander McQueen, Tim Burton, Charlie Chaplin, Damien Hurst, Andy Warhol, Elvis Costello, and Georges Jeanty. She looks up to them because of their eccentric passion to their work. When asked what inspires her work, Chickey answers, “Anything.” She could see something and suddenly numerous ideas could erupt in her mind. A lot of Times images inspire her. “Just simple things. I love the 40s and everything about that time, all the Hollywood glamour. I look to that and even other generations for inspiration.” She saw a film From Hell, which is about Jack the Ripper, but it made her so inspired about the turn of the century clothing in England that she came up with her Lord Knox design.
Chickey currently works alone because she likes to be able to have control over what she does. She gets to have a lot of freedom, and she can express herself more that way. She will ask a few friends and family their thoughts on what designs look best and what they would wear. This allows her to get into the mind of the consumer. “I get to find out if they would really buy this or have I gone off my rocker and made something a little too eccentric and have to tone it down.” In the future she can definitely see herself having a team because she does not always have the time to accomplish the numerous ideas she has.
Every piece Chickey creates becomes her favorite, but then she quickly moves onto new work. She is never satisfied. “If I could I’d still be working on my older pieces but it gets to a point where you realize it is done. I do still love my older pieces but I am constantly looking forward towhat the next big design could be.” Chickey’s largest accomplishment to date with her line is when she designed a t-shirt for her friends’ band. In the two weeks the band was on tour, 150 shirts sold out. Courtney has also been featured in Hofstra’s Chronicle for her fashion line. Some of her clothing was also featured in Destination Runway, a campus fashion show that took place in November in 2010.
Chickey Designs will also expand in the future. Courtney currently sells leather bracelets, tank tops, and sweatshirts along with her t-shirts. A lot of the decision to choose different items of clothing comes from consumer demand. Chickey made sweatshirts for the fall and winter because of the colder weather, whereas women are more likely to wear tank tops in the summer and men stick to light t-shirts. She makes sure that all the clothing she provides is comfortable and that the consumer will enjoy wearing it. Courtney stays away from starchy fabrics that can get too rough after washes, making it uncomfortable to wear. She changes up her t-shirt providers, depending on what she wants printed and how she wants it printed. She prefers American Apparel shirts because they are basic and comfortable. Their popularity has also grown and many people wear them now.
PRestige is very excited to work with Chickey this semester. She is our first fashion client and we have many exciting ideas in place. Check out Courtney’s website here to see her well-priced merchandise that makes a perfect gift for you or your friends/family members. Courtney also has a blog for her fashion line, where she frequently posts about fashion and red carpet events. To receive updates from Chickey Designs, follow @ChickeyDesigns on Twitter.
Digital Media Chair, PRestige Agency