Exploring the ‘sexier side of tomboy’, Nicole King-Burroughs, Women’s Designer for Gap 1969, fuses boyish casual with feminine silhouettes. Inspired by lanky basketball athletes, Nicole draws all of her sketches with extra-long legs. Nicole began sketching clothes at just four years old, culminating in a taffeta dress she created for her prom.
After studying fashion illustration in high school, Nicole moved to New York to attend Parsons. While attending Parsons, Nicole won a coveted internship at Gap. She worked on the first women’s jean for Gap 1969 and set the stage for taking on women’s design duties when the 1969 collection expanded. “What began as a capsule collection became a lifestyle brand,” recalls Nicole.
Calling upon different influences, Nicole uses herself as the greatest litmus test of design durability. “I start my day early waking up with my two year-old. I put on my jeans and roll around on the floor with my kids. Then, I can go out for drinks with my husband after work in the same fantastic jean.” Urban life is also a consideration when choosing the right denim. “I love the casual lifestyle in Los Angeles. I have a different wardrobe for New York. In LA, I’d wear boyfriend jeans with Converse. In New York, skinny jeans, heeled boots”.
Citing her mother, a textile designer, as a source of encouragement, Nicole highlights the origin of her passion for denim. “My mother works with indigo. Her hands were always dyed blue. That color is organically in my brain, my soul, my life.”