Amanda White and AAW Collections
Designing, Sewing, and Showcasing All From Her Dorm!
By: Caroline Kawabe
From the sunny coast of Southern California to the traditional landscapes of the Northeast, Amanda White is determined to make her mark on the world of fashion. Currently pursuing a degree in business administration with a concentration in accounting and retail design, White has used her intellect and creativity to start her own clothing line from scratch. Her creativity and dedication to her craft have allowed her to tell stories and make unique statements through fashion for her and friends alike to enjoy.
White’s interest in fashion was sparked at a young age.
“I remember the first time I wanted to be a fashion designer was when I was seven,” White said. “I used to take a black knit shawl and wrap it around me to make a top, using hair clips to secure it in place.”
Teaching herself how to sew and design, White’s talents are a reflection of her diligence and persistence. Though her mother has some sewing experience, it was primarily for the purpose of repairing rather than creating. White initially began experimenting with a needle and thread at the young age of seven or eight, but it wasn’t until a decade later that she would fully embrace this newfound passion.
“I always wanted to know how to make clothes, but I had no idea where to start,” White said.
Finally, after hours and hours of work and experimenting, at 16, White sewed her first top entirely by hand.
By 17, White took her first real go at using a sewing machine, and with fabric scraps found in her garage, she made her first couple of skirts. White went into the process with nothing but an open mind and a creative vision. “I didn’t follow any guides or YouTube videos,” said White. “I just did what I thought needed to be done.” Over the years, she has continued to advance her techniques, delving into the subtleties of lace-ups, denim, and more.
Fast forward to summer 2023, and what was once a small experiment in her garage has grown into a full-blown passion and business venture. She designed and handcrafted an astonishing 101 pieces over the summer, making a total of 270 designs in her catalog. As she reflects, White notes that regardless of how frustrating some of the learning curves may have been, she realized that “[she] never failed because I never gave up,” she said.
After receiving praise from family and friends for her unique designs, White recognized the demand for her pieces. She ventured into selling her creations, beginning with close friends and expanding to platforms like Depop. She currently has 26 designs for sale and plans to release new designs periodically.
In the midst of her studies, Amanda has transformed her dorm room into a “sewing studio,” with walls covered in her beautiful sketches and designs. Her inspiration knows no bounds, as her ideas tend to come from her own imagination rather than specific designs or patterns.
She loves experimenting with backless and lace-up tops and dresses, ruffles, and elastic to structure the fabric and give it more texture.
“I really just think of what I would want to wear,” White explained.
She recently had her first showcase experience as a designer for the BU Fashion and Retail Association’s Fashion Show in the spring. And as her website gears up for its grand debut, she continues to follow her passion for design –– Amanda White truly embodies what it means to be creative and determined.
“I don’t know exactly what I’ll end up doing or how to get there, but I know that I just have to create cool clothes,” White said.
To keep up with Amanda’s artistic journey, follow her on Instagram: @aaw.collections and stay tuned for the launch of her website aawcollections.com!