• Mae

The Taiga: Beginnings and Intentions

The Taiga is a fashion and photography project that I conceptualized over 4 years ago when I was just starting out as a freshman in Fashion School. I started designing characters and outfits based on the story of the Decemberist’s “Hazards of Love” Concept album. The story is an archetypal tale of doomed love that takes place in an ancient forest with dark hidden secrets. I was drawn to the story of destructive love and the sense that nature is more powerful than any individual. I specifically remember loving that the Queen of the Forest, made of the branches of trees, was a sentient individual with omnipotent power over her domain : the Taiga.

Progress of creating the first costume, a tailored jacket with hand-cut feather detail and gown detailed with hand-dyed feathers and silk

Though some of the original costumes were destroyed and many of the original concepts scrapped, I am approaching the project with new eyes after years of studying fashion, working professionally in the world of costume and practicing as a photographer. I have spent the past few weeks creating the first outfit for the heroine of our story, modeled by Lena Vani, one of my oldest friends. I am so grateful to everyone who has helped me and agreed to take part. I intend to dedicate this year to this project, longer if I need to. I am attaching some of the photos of my process creating the first outfit below so that anyone interested can see and follow along with the project.

You can follow along on Facebook or Instagram or subscribe to our mailing list for updates and images as the project develops.