The Art of Fashion: Rendering William Eggleston’s Abstracts Into High-End Accessories

Design Features Electra Eggleston
The Art of Fashion: Rendering William Eggleston’s Abstracts Into High-End Accessories

Famed photographer William Eggleston and his daughter Andra Eggleston created the electra eggleston label, which features fine textiles, home-décor products and unique fashion collaborations. The brand’s top-level goods tell a story and brighten up any room or outfit. “The greatest compliment I get is when someone tells me that the prints fill them with joy and make them happy just looking at them,” Andra says. “The first time that someone told me that, I thought, ‘Well, that’s it. My job is done here.’”

Upon moving to Nashville after living away from Tennessee (her home state) for more than a decade, Andra took a series of trips to visit her father in Memphis. His drawings captivated her, and she gained a deeper comprehension of who he was as an artist and photographer. William is credited with legitimizing the medium of color photography in modern art. AndraDad.jpg His work highlighted the nondescript in a way that made people view their surroundings differently. Once a National Endowment of the Arts photography fellow, his larger prints are worth millions of dollars. On Andra’s visits, the pair hung out, made art together, and delved into William’s cache of drawings, some of which were on scraps of paper. Andra gathered the sketches and experimented with them in regards to scale and color and as repeat patterns. She realized the works could be turned into fabrics, and electra eggleston was born.

The company name is rooted in family history. William had wanted to name Andra “Electra,” but her mother wouldn’t allow it. Perfectly suited for a design brand, the stimulating name pays homage to the family’s rich creative legacy. Andra notes that working alongside her father in the creation process has meant more to her than the final product, though she’s pleased with that too. “I always reminded myself in the beginning to stay true to the story of the tender spirit of the collaboration and how I discovered to love my father in a new way,” she says. “I knew if I focused on this, the rest would fall into place, and it really did.”

The electra eggleston brand is proudly made in the USA. All textile prints are designed and edited in Tennessee and digitally printed in North Carolina. Non-synthetic materials, such as cotton/linen and 100% Belgian linen, make up the bulk of the line. Fabric is made-to-order for the design trade. Pillows can be purchased through the website or found at select retailers. A bow-tie collaboration with maker electra_pillows_stack.jpgOtis James is available through his website. The special series features individually numbered silk/linen bow ties, with only ten pieces made in each design. In 2016, French fashion designer Agnès B. featured electra eggleston prints on a capsule collection of clothing. Specified pieces can be shopped online.

Andra is currently working with a Nashville hotel that’s scheduled to open later this year. “It’s always fascinating to see the diversity of application,” she says. “In this case, it will be outdoor furniture fabric in an exclusive print. I’m collaborating with the design team and I’m loving not only the process, but the people involved.” A new collection is set to launch this spring.

Emily Davidson Nemoy is a freelance writer based in Nashville, Tenn. When she’s not at her computer or on her yoga mat, she can be found at live music venues happily spending her excess cash on concert tickets.

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