From getting involved in FCCLA at a young age to studying apparel design and manufacturing at Texas Tech, Jillian Hackett landed at the 2022 New York Fashion week, making some of her dreams come true.
Hackett, a third-year student from Montgomery, had her own clothing items showcased at the New York Fashion Week that took place early last month.
“My senior year of high school I got invited by Oxford fashion studio to develop an eight look collection to present during their showcase runway,” Hackett said. “That was a really cool experience to be able to go through the whole process of creating a line and then launching my brand. Really just being able to get and be invited to be a part of something like that at a young age is such a unique experience.”
After attending Fashion Week, Hackett said she has many new memories, but one was definitely her favorite at the end of the week.
“I think my favorite memory from fashion week probably is I was backstage and the collection was walking and it got time for like the final walk for all the pieces that went out together. And I kind of started tearing up because it was kind of like a full circle moment,” Hackett said. “Everything that I had put work into, for the past few years was coming into fruition and people were actually seeing what I had made. And also I knew it was gonna be opening a bunch of doors for future opportunities.”
Along with opportunities for Hackett that will arise after fashion week, she already has her own brand that has begun to grow.
Her brand is named Lillian Janae Designs, which is the first letter of her first and middle names flip flopped, which is also her grandmother’s name, Hackett said.
“Being a current student is rather overwhelming at times. It's kind of like the Hannah Montana moment, but it is the best of both worlds,” Hackett said. “It really is the best of both worlds because I work within the industry while learning about it so as I'm learning in my coursework, I'm able to apply that to my brand and my business.”
Throughout finding her love for fashion, declaring her major, and attending Fashion Week, Hackett said she has always had her mother on her side.
“My mom was the one who taught me how to sew. She's always been like my backbone who's always like lifting me up and helping me if I have a problem with something, always helping me talk through it,” Hackett said. “She also went with me to fashion week so she was kind of like my mental support when I was there so I didn't get overwhelmed. I always had someone I knew I could talk to while I was there.”
Daytona Austin found Hackett through a post on Instagram where Hackett said she was looking for an assistant, and then stood by her side all week in New York.
“It was a great experience, I think for both of us because that was her first fashion show. And that was my first time at a fashion show and getting to help with it. So overall, it was like a great time. It was great to see the behind the scenes of everything and see all coming together.”