Anna Rose Designs: Urban Style with a Caribbean Spin
From around the age of six Alanna Grant knew she wanted to be a fashion designer. At the age of eight, she took designs to her seamstress and was disappointed when the finished product didn’t accurately reflect her vision. Now at the age of 19 she is the creative director of Anna Rose Designs.
It’s clear Alanna knew what she wanted from a very young age.
“One year I went to Kids World Expo and bought a toy sewing machine. My Barbies were my first customers and they always had new outfits. From work wear to school uniforms,” she recalls. Today Alanna holds a diploma in Garment Technology from the Samuel Jackman Prescod Polytechnic and has plans to pursue a Bachelor’s of Arts degree in Business and Fashion Marketing.
The Launch of Anna Rose
Anna Rose Designs was officially launched this year. The Prelude collection was unveiled to the public at the Pompasette Brunch Party. “I knew I wanted to start this year and I just bought the fabric and had it sitting there for about two months. I even had all the designs there waiting, I’m not sure for what. I saw a poster for the event one day and I just messaged Toni [Thorne] who was the host and signed up. That was two weeks before the event. It was a mad rush to make the garments to ensure I had something on the runway but thanks to the help of all my family and friends I got through,” Alanna says.
The young designer who loves working with cotton and linen describes her aesthetic as urban/resort. “I’m greatly influenced by the fashion of big cities like New York and London but then as the island girl that I am, I add just a touch of Caribbean flair. The woman I cater to is youthful and chic and she believes in the perfect marriage between comfort and style,” she explains. Of course, that love for natural fabrics is due in no small part to the sometimes almost unbearable heat of Barbados. “I’ve lived in Barbados all my life and I know what it is to be hot! I like clothing that allows me to breathe.” (Can’t argue there!)
The sources of inspiration for Anna Rose Designs are many, ranging from visual art, music, and nature to people and history. However, Alanna holds a special place for fabric. “Just put a good piece of fabric in my hand and I’ll transform it into wearable art,” she says.
The teenager’s personal style also influences her work. “I love high fashion garments but I’m also a T-shirt and jeans kinda gal. I’m also not the person who goes looking to wear something everyone else is wearing. My designs are a reflection of that and you see a piece of me in every one of my designs,” she says.
As for her future plans, Alanna wants to do a menswear line as soon as she is trained in the proper techniques.