One of a Kind Show


Get to Know... Jennifer Akese-Burney

03 . 25 . 2019

Akeyse Stylelines designer Jennifer Akese-Burney incorporates colorful African prints with western silhouettes to create wonderfully vibrant modern apparel.

One of a Kind: How would you describe your work.

Jennifer: My work is basically wearable art, which fuses a classic bold silhouette and a taste of avant garde, with a focus on fit and functionality. For my fabric jewelry, I sew cutout strips of African print fabrics, cord them and manipulate them into sculptural wearable pieces that can also be used as embellishment on some of the clothing pieces I make. The 2D inspirations are literally turned into 3D wearable art in my latest collection. Every piece is a work of Art. Avant garde, artistic, wearable yet functional.

One of a Kind: When and why did you decide to become a designer?

Jennifer: I always knew I wanted to be a fashion designer even as a child. There was always another way to wear an outfit or to create something unique just for me--something that made me stand out. I was always curious about how cut out pieces came together to create an outfit.

One of a Kind: What or who inspires you/your work?

Jennifer: The medium for my art is fabric. I use all types of fabrics in creating my work including lace, satin, neoprene, wool and mostly African print fabrics. I am inspired by bold silhouettes, color, textures, pattern, and my culture and home country, Ghana.

One of a Kind: What is your favorite part of doing what you do?

Jennifer: Definitely my designing process--sketching, pattern making, sewing the sample and fitting. It's detailed and the process gives me much joy especially when the end result is realized.

One of a Kind: Have you ever made anything that you couldn't part with?

Jennifer: Totally--my personal "Nkasa" red jacket. I get so many compliments on it and people have asked that I sell it to them, even though they know I would never budge.

One of a Kind: What's your favorite Spring activity?

Jennifer: Being able to play with my children in the backyard while enjoying the sun.

One of a Kind Show: What are some of your favorite things to do in Chicago?

Jennifer: I definitely enjoy going to the movies, and outdoor festivals during the warmer weather in Chicago.

See Jennifer and her one of a kind designs at this year's Spring show.