Cool Friends: Ellen Van Dusen

Meet Ellen, a Brooklyn-based textile & fashion designer. In 2010, Ellen launched Dusen Dusen as a home for her bold and colorful prints. Her work, from dog beds to jacquard-woven jackets, is always fun and always original.

What led you to begin your fashion career?

I made clothes for myself all through high school, and knew I wanted to turn that into my job somehow but also knew that I didn't want to go to fashion school. Instead I studied the visual process from an interdisciplinary perspective and wrote my thesis on color in the brain. After I finished college I worked for another designer, and after a couple months of that I decided to start selling some pieces on the side. It took off and here I am, 10 years later!

What is inspiring you right now?

Indoor stuff! I'm loving cut flowers, my kitchen herb garden, and tv shows/movies that I'm binging right now. I've been into thrillers and horror movies recently, anything to fully distract me from the news! I'm finding ways to be creative outside of my regular practice, which keeps everything else from getting stale in my brain. Cooking and gardening have flexed that muscle, and I am trying to transfer that energy into my design work.

What’s your favorite part about the NYC creative community?

I find that everyone is super open and supportive. Some of my best friends are designers with small businesses, and we are constantly texting and calling each other for advice. We all know each other, and collaborate on events, trade shows... it's generally just a very fun group of people. To be here and to make a living making things, you really have to hustle. Being surrounded by people that work hard and believe in their work is super inspiring and keeps me going.

Follow along:
@dusendusen on Instagram

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Made in Brooklyn, NY