as bright as her clothing

by faith bennett
In one of Coco Chanel’s many quotable moments she once said, “Those who create are rare; those who cannot are numerous.” Jacksonville designer Mckynlie Drummond belongs the first group and is even more rare of a talent when her young age is taken into account. The 20-year-old seamstress and designer, who is not even out of college yet, has already finished her first resort collection and debuted it on Etsy in May, when she also held her first solo fashion show celebrating her line at Suite. Between sewing marathons she was able to talk to EU about her experiences and aspirations.
Drummond says she first learned to sew from her sister’s boyfriend’s grandmother when she was ten years old. Though she started small, the skills her now grandmother-in-law taught her have enabled her to sew entire entire garments on her own. She currently attends the Art Institute of Jacksonville which she says has helped her learn many of the business elements of fashion retail, though her own experiences have leant themselves more toward a technical understanding of the craft. Drummond worked for years at an infant and toddler boutique called Kennedi’s Closet as a seamstress before she began interning under St. Augustine designer Erin Healy and gaining experience at Miami Fashion week. Recently, although she has continued work with Erin, Drummond has only been sewing for Burro Bags Downtown with the exception, of course, of her new line.
Mckynlie Drummond’s label is simply titled “Mckynlie.” Her summer 2013 resort line is a collection of vibrant apparel with clean lines which is as fit for a cocktail party as it is the beach. Among what is for sale on the newly launched Etsy store are fitted, high-waist linen shorts, linen shift dresses with open backs, bright rompers, thick bandeau tops and damask skirts. She is also selling both men’s and women’s swimwear now. One of the better features of her online store is the ability to order not just a handmade garment, but a customizable garment. Women’s swimwear comes in a variety of colors and patterns, and any swimsuit can be made with differently cut bikini tops and bottoms.
While thoroughly a Florida girl herself, Mckynlie was very inspired by the designers and cultures of places such as Costa Rica and Guatamala. Mckynlie hopes to expand her online business further to include a brick and mortar store in one of these places.
It’s by no stroke of great luck that Mckynlie Drummond did stumble on her recent fortune in the industry. One would be hard-pressed to find someone her age with the same drive. In the past year the young seamstress has proven herself to be so much more as she branched out to manufacture so much entirely by herself. The future for Mckynlie, the line and the girl, is as bright as her clothing.