Jhane Barnes, a men"s fashion icon, is also recognized for her innovation in contract and interior textiles, carpeting, eyewear, and office furniture. Jhane"s carpets, upholstery, and furniture appear in the offices of such high profile companies as Google, Delta Air Lines, and SONY. Known for her inventiveness, Jhane has become one of the most sought after designers for almost any industry seeking intelligent, environmentally sensitive, and aesthetically groundbreaking design.
Jhane"s career began serendipitously in high school in Maryland. Impressed by clothing she had made for herself and friends, her high school principal asked Jhane to create uniforms for the school"s dance band. This experience, coupled with a trip to Europe, reinforced Jhane"s interest in fashion. She cast aside plans to study astrophysics at Cal Tech, and enrolled at New York"s Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT).
While Jhane initially studied womenswear (menswear was not offered as a major), her senior show at FIT featured menswear. Her line earned rave reviews from DNR, the leading men"s fashion trade publication, and she was besieged with offers for her clothing. With a $5,000 loan from her biology professor, Jhane went into production, transforming her apartment into a studio. This was only the start of Jhane"s much praised fashion business.
From the very beginning, Jhane sought a hands on approach to fashion. In 1978 she purchased a loom and began developing the rich fabrics that led to her 1980 COTY award at the age of 25. Jhane was the youngest designer ever to receive this award, which she won a second time in 1981. This same year, Jhane won the inaugural CFDA (Council of Fashion Designers of America) Menswear Design Award. In 1981 and 1982, Jhane was named Outstanding Designer of the Year by Cutty Sark. In 1991, Jhane received the Woolmark Award for Continuing Integrity and Design Leadership through her use of unique colors and textures. These are just some of Jhane"s many accolades.
In 1983, Knoll approached Jhane to design a collection of contract textiles. Jhane applied the concepts that succeeded in her menswear designs to develop original upholstery fabrics. Her aesthetic and design process are a true union of science and art. Jhane incorporates fractals and algorithms into her patterns, producing unique, multi layered fabrics. She uses custom software developed and maintained by noted mathematicians. During Jhane"s 15 plus years collaborating with Knoll, she earned several IIDA (International Interior Design Association), Good Design, and Best of Neocon awards.
Uncompromising and innovative use of materials, from stretch knits to recycled polyester, earned Jhane a reputation in the contract furniture market. She began making panel fabrics, wall coverings and draperies. Bernhardt sought her out to design furniture, and Tandus approached Jhane to develop modular floor tiles. Jhane continues to design for these companies today.
Jhane is known for her design innovation and for her efforts to maintain environmentally sensitive practices. This is reflected in Tahke, Jhane"s new line of office furniture for Jofco, an Indiana based manufacturer. Tahke is made from bamboo harvested by hand in China, and is as environmentally sensitive as possible. Even the glue, tack surface, finishing, drawer boxes, and compact fluorescent lights in the overhead take into account their environmental impact.
In another recent project, Jhane applied her signature push pull technique used in her menswear line to design wall panels and tabletops for Lumicor. Her designs feature sheets of brightly colored, push pull, double woven fabric sandwiched between layers of acrylic.
Finally, Jhane is thrilled about the imminent debut of her men"s and women"s uniforms for ARIA Resort and Casino, which is part of CityCenter, a new, 67 acre, casino resort opening in Las Vegas on December 16th, 2009. Within a mere 18 months, Jhane designed nearly 200 distinct garments for 31 different rooms or areas. Each design complements the interior of the room where it will be worn. Jhane was particularly excited that ARIA and CityCenter made extensive efforts to be environmentally sensitive, and that many of the spaces for which she designed uniforms use natural materials, like recycled glass and bamboo.
Throughout her career, Jhane has approached design with novelty and ingenuity, introducing new concepts, methods and technologies to men"s fashion, interior and contract fabrics, office furniture, and more. As Jhane takes on new projects, she is certain to continue to push the boundaries of design; to redefine the relationship between technology and product development; and to revolutionize the links between product development, aesthetics, and environmental sustainability.
For Fall 2012 designers are inspired by a wide range of influences, from the elaborate details of brocade and metallic gold embellishments to the dynamic mix of military chic and power pantsuits. Colo