Designing - Then Writing - for Success

Kent State Graduate Jailynn Taylor evolved from designing for fashion to writing about it
Jailynn Taylor Headshot

Jailynn Taylor didn’t originally set out to write about the fashion industry. She set out to design for it. But today, Taylor is living her dream working in the fast-paced world of the fashion industry as a contracted commerce and beauty writer for InStyle and in New York City. 

Currently, Taylor is writing about how readers can get celebrity looks for less, holy grail beauty products and up-and-coming trends spotted on celebrities. Taylor spots what is trending or what is about to and tells readers how they can achieve those looks. 

“I get to speak to so many different trends and clothing items, and I'm kind of the one pushing the narrative and pushing the trends forward,” Taylor said. 

But this career path started at Kent State University with an eye on fashion design. 

When it was time for Taylor to pick a school to study fashion design, she looked at all the nation’s top-ranking schools. Kent State is included in this list, ranking in the top 10 schools in the nation that offer a fashion design program. In the end, Kent State’s affordability, top-ranking programs and the School of Fashion’s education abroad program led Taylor to choose to earn her bachelor’s in fashion design at Kent State. 

Taylor started her journey at Kent State in 2015. During her time as a student in the fashion design program, Taylor gained useful experience and knowledge that helped set her up to work in the fashion industry. 

“When you come out into the industry, you quickly learn where Kent State’s place is in the industry. Kent State falls more into the technical side of design compared to other schools, who focus more so on the conceptual side of design,” Taylor said. 

This knowledge of the technical side of the industry allowed Taylor to transition seamlessly from being a college student to a professional in the fashion industry. 

“Knowing the technical side of things really made moving into the workspace easier for me because I had all the technical basis,” Taylor said. “I knew how to make tech packs and how to construct garments from a technical standpoint. I appreciate that from Kent. They set me up for success.” 

Jailynn Taylor Fashion

Faculty members helped guide Taylor and provided support during her time as a student, which helped her find success after graduation. A pivotal faculty member for Taylor was Tameka Ellington, Ph.D., associate professor at the School of Fashion and interim assistant dean for the College of the Arts. 

“She was very transparent with me on what it is like going out into the real world and what to expect and she really set me up for success as well,” Taylor said. 

Taylor graduated from Kent State in 2019 with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in fashion design. Following graduation, Taylor jumped into the corporate side of the design industry, working for brands like LC Lauren Conrad and Aerie. 

During her time in corporate design, Taylor missed the creativity and freedom she had in school to design whatever she wanted. Wanting to tap into that creativity again, Taylor pivoted to a career in writing where she could appreciate and speak to fashion in its entirety.

Taylor started freelance writing on the side to help build up her portfolio and transitioned from being a fashion designer to a fashion writer. After Taylor had gained enough experience, she resigned from her job in the corporate design world and landed a contract position as a commerce, fashion and beauty writer for InStyle and 

Though writing is different from designing, Taylor still uses the knowledge from her degree from Kent State in her day-to-day when writing about different fashion trends.

“I definitely am still carrying a lot of my knowledge and the teachings that I received at Kent,” she said. “It’s what makes me an expert in speaking to fashion.” 

Learn more about the School of Fashion. 

Photo Credit: Alumnus Jermaine Jackson

POSTED: Monday, July 24, 2023 12:02 PM
Updated: Friday, July 28, 2023 01:44 PM
Tanner Poe, Flash Communications