Next Gen Fashion Designer: Hannah Thomas, Pratt Institute


Name of your collection: Augury

What is the inspiration or concept behind it?

In a world that fortifies itself with concrete, nature finds a way to break through using the smallest of cracks. The resilience of ivy and moss can break down what we believe will always be there. Visually, the whimsical nature of an ivy coated cottage combines with the destruction our world has faced and will face due to foolhardy human nature. My collection is unisex and focuses on hand knitwear and suiting. I design clothes, not the bodies that choose to wear them.

How is sustainability part of your ethos?
I believe as designers, we have a need to include sustainability as a point of consideration in everything we do. I focus on sustainability predominantly in my knitwear. Sourcing 100% natural fiber yarn can be difficult with the popularity of acrylic fibers, but I find the final garment is not only higher quality but it has a softer hand. I believe fully fashioned knitwear is the future in the movement towards sustainable clothing with little to no waste for functional and beautiful pieces.

“In a world that fortifies itself with concrete, nature finds a way to break through using the smallest of cracks.”

How do you see the current situation changing your expectations/path?
It’s been difficult to come to terms with the fact that my class doesn’t get to end the year together and that many of the opportunities we’ve worked so hard for the last four years won’t happen. Our faculty at Pratt has been so supportive of us through this transition to online learning with changing expected outcomes while still pushing us to have work ready to enter the industry. Lack of exposure is always a concern for such a connections-based industry. Since I was not able to have my photoshoot before everyone went into quarantine, and not having good quality photography of my work has been a challenge which has made me need to be a bit more creative. I’ve been trying to keep my expectations high while being realistic that the timeline is going to be pushed back by about a year.

Where do you hope to be in 3 years?
Despite the current state of creative industries and the world, I have big hopes for the future. Before the city shut down, I worked with an amazing group of Wardrobe girls at Sleep No More, an immersive film noir production of the scottish play. I would love to balance continuing to work in theatre with designing or freelancing for major fashion brands to expand the world of couture knitwear and what that could mean in the world of sustainability.

Three things keeping you sane right now
• Cross Stitching
• Sourdough bread making
• Staying in touch with friends and family through snail mail and facetime

If you could dress anyone in the world who would it be and why?
I don’t have a particular person in mind when I design my clothes. I’d love to see this collection moved in, so before the pandemic I was planning a photoshoot with a group of dancers from Sleep No More who range in age, gender, and race. But really, I don’t see a limit on who can wear these clothes. Susan Norman, a close family friend and mentor from back home, is one of the most stylish women I know. It’d be amazing to see her in my clothes. A lot of fashion designers shy away from dressing people outside of the young model type, but they can often be way more stylish and timeless than a twenty-something or typical influencer.

Find Hannah at @hltdesigns |