Megan Haining had always been focused on incorporating sports into fashion in a new way to create a more dressed up every day look to sportswear. As well as bringing attention to the winter sports - particularly figure skating - as it something she has always loved due to growing up as a competitive ice skater representing Scotland at many competitions. We had a great pleasure to speak to recently featured in April issue of the Harper’s Bazaar designer.
You incorporate sports into fashion as well as bring attention towards the winter sports, what made you decide to focus on that?
As I was a figure skater, part of the winter sport community, I am aware of how greatly underfunded the sport as well as many winter sports are in the UK. Therefore, bringing the sport I loved most to the light, through fashion, is a great desire of mine. Bringing attention to a community and sport I hold so dearly. Another reason I focused on skating is due to my own understanding and ease of research. As my knowledge of the sport and community surrounding it is something I have grew up among and so I know of nothing more. Not only am I able to bring the attention to the sport I love through another media I love dearly, fashion, but also figure skating is where I first fell in love with the idea of fashion and trends so seemed like a great place to focus my interests.
As the ice-skating connected you so close with fashion, would you mind telling us what other similarities you can notice in both of them? ?
Competing in a great deal of figure skating competitions has indeed helped me to grow as a fashion designer as it developed my confidence greatly and has gave a great attitude that has helped to develop me as a fashion designer. Due to skating competitions not only do I take failure well but understand it as a way to progress and develop therefore allowing me to also take criticism and opinion well, taking on advice that will push me to improve and develop my skills. Before competitions and in order to achieve level high enough to compete a skater must train and practice a great deal this has gave me a great work ethic as well as an understanding of time management that has helped me a great deal and allowed me to not only complete tasks to a tight time frame but also ahead of time making my time management and organizational skills perfect for a life in the fashion industry. This is also due to my understanding of how-to priorities and access my own skills by accepting what I need to work on and where my strengths and weaknesses lie allowing me to develop and create more strengths amongst my skills.
“ Competing in a great deal of figure skating competitions has indeed helped me to grow as a fashion designer as it developed my confidence greatly and has gave a great attitude that has helped to develop me as a fashion designer.”.”
How would you describe your designs and main inspiration?
My inspiration comes from people, from communities and sport. I have always been interested in trends and subcultures particularly in sport as there are so many ways I believe sportswear can influence mainstream fashion. I would describe my designs to be a new take on sporting style and a development of high-end fashion in a contemporary manner.
“My inspiration comes from people, from communities and sport. I have always been interested in trends and subcultures particularly in sport as there are so many ways I believe sportswear can influence mainstream fashion.”
The ice skating seems like an important factor in your life, why you decided to become a fashion designer?
I was a figure skater from a young age and grew up by an ice rink admiring the trends and styles of skaters looking upon the ice as though it were a fashion show. This is where my love of fashion truly began, I would always love to dress up for the ice and when it became time for me to compete and finally get a competition dress designed for me this was my first experience of seeing the design process and I fell in love with the idea of becoming a designer. Later in my life I went on to design my own dresses and then dresses of others – this is where I began my journey in to becoming a fashion designer through skating and so I honour the sport still through my inspiration as it was in fact my first inspiration I ever had. I wanted to be a fashion designer as I found a great love in being able to tell a story and highlighting movement and the natural beauty of the human body through fashion that allows the wearer to highlight their personality and who they are - there feelings and loves all through fashion due to a designer giving them the resources to style themselves.
Saying all these, How would you like to be pictured in your target minds?
As a designer I hope to be able to bring the styles and trends of subgroups of people to light with a keen intrigue in sports styles. Not only do I want to bring these trends to light but also to expand them in a way that makes them an accessible look for the mainstream which will in turn bring the awareness of the main meaning of the people and their lifestyle and loves to light. I want to be a designer who allows for people to be themselves and express themselves for who they are as well as being able to bring awareness to less known, finding interesting new influences as well as seeing influence in new ways going deeper than merely the surface. I want to be a designer for people a designer who inspires others much like I was inspired by seeing the design process seeing the story of the garment and allowing it show not only the wearer but those who see them know the story and character of the wearer.
“As a designer I hope to be able to bring the styles and trends of subgroups of people to light with a keen intrigue in sports styles.”
Discover Megan Haining's full collection
Words by Katarzyna Korcz