There’s nothing like a good trip to a vintage store. Coming back with a bag full of tiny, previously loved treasures is always satisfying. Not only because it expands your wardrobe, but also because vintage items have already stood the test of time, so you know they’re built to last. That being said, there is nothing more frustrating than going to a store, and not being able to find your size in something, or if you do find your size in something you like, trying it on only to find out that it doesn’t fit properly. It’s true, vintage sizes run exceptionally strange, and more often than not, are closer to doll sizes than actual human beings, and designer Sheana Hinsley of LA’s Malicious Designs knows this better than anyone.
Hinsley says she has been sewing since she was 11, ever since she picked up her first copy of Sassy Magazine. Born in her Brooklyn apartment in 2001, Hinsley says that she created Malicious Designs due to a gap in the vintage market. “I have always been a fan of anything vintage and ruffled. I love old patterns, fabrics and laces,” says Hinsley. “I found that most vintage clothing I love, didn't really have a great fit for me and wasn't very flattering. So I decided to make things with a vintage feel, but with a modern fit.” Initially a collection of women’s lingerie, Malicious Designs has since expanded to womenswear as well. Using only vintage fabrics, including a particularly amazing rooster print she uses for dresses, she creates adorable retro-inspired pieces that are the perfect hybrid of kitsch and vintage, as Hinsley describes it, “babydolls for bar fights.”
Hinsley takes care in updating vintage silhouettes, by giving them a modern fit and take. She says that the majority of her inspiration comes from old fabrics, “I'll see an amazing piece of fabric then the design will come to me. I'm inspired by old Frederick’s of Hollywood, 70s disco, and little girls’ party dresses.” Covering a huge range of clothing, with everything from robes, to swimsuits, and even costumes (one of her most popular pieces was inspired by the character Eleven’s dress from the Netflix hit tv series, Stranger Things), Malicious Designs has amassed a devoted following. Hinsley says that she often “[thinks] fashion can be too serious, it's nice to dress up and be girly.”