AROUND TOWN: Aidan Shiller

As a college student, adults constantly ask you how everything is going. Always impressed when I inform them I am attending Cornell University, I quickly let them down when I reveal that I am studying fashion, a major that many consider highly risky to enter. When younger, adults always tell you to follow your dreams. Once you hit senior year, it very quickly becomes about financials and job security. Very few college freshmen know without a doubt that what they are studying is the correct field of work for them. Aidan Shiller, a fellow fashion major at Cornell University is one of the lucky ones that know he is studying what he is meant to do with his life.

Name: Aidan Shiller

Role: Student Designer

CollegeFashionista: How did you get involved in fashion?

Aidan Shiller: My mom has been in the fashion industry for nearly three decades now, and fashion has been part of my life since the day I was born. She’s always told me the story about how she wanted a little girl to play dress up with and never having one she naturally styled me from a young age. My mom always pushed me away from the fashion industry because she knew first hand how difficult it is to make it. Unfortunately, I took that as motivation and that’s how I started this path to become a designer.

CF: Who/where do you draw inspiration from?

AS: When I’m designing clothes I try to stay away from being inspired by other clothing. Most seasons I look at every single menswear collection and dissect what I like and dislike about them. I definitely pick out textures, shapes and small details that I like, but stay away from copying looks. When I’m actually sitting down and designing a collection I look at art, architecture and other forms of design for inspirations. Sometimes I’ll incorporate details I vividly remember, but I make a point to not look at clothing when designing 

CF: What is your favorite trend?

AS: I’m not a huge fan of trends, but if I had to choose one it would be the FSAD Boiz movement. They don’t make clothing…they make waves. Designing for the post Tumblr society, they fight for freedom of expression and fight the bureaucratic institutions that hold back creativity. They’ve transcended beyond making collections and have moved into the territory of what I’d call protest presentations. It’s art and the next wave of visionaries.

CF: What is your dream job/client?

AS: Right now, my dream job is creating an independent menswear brand. I want to become the next Thom Browne or Rick Owens. I want to create a new subculture that makes it into mainstream fashion, but changes the way everyone looks at the fashion industry.

Learn More: Aidan will be showing in the upcoming Cornell Fashion Collective runway show this April. One can look it up here, on his Instagram or check out his personal fashion blog.