Meet Designer Joanna Mae-Noel for VOA Woman

Joanna Mae-Noel Weadon

Norfolk, Virginia

Mae-Noel is my clothing brand that celebrates the influence of a woman and her style. Clean lines and classic designs compliment the natural beauty of the woman, while high quality, responsibly-made materials reflect the way she values the world around her. Versatility allows her to worry less about what she will wear so that she can give more attention to the things that matter to her the most.

Mae-Noel is an extension of myself. I strive to design clothes that women can make their own and enjoy on countless occasions. As a young mother with no formal training in fashion design, I have found found an empowering creative experience in designing and creative directing Mae-Noel. I want to share my story with other women around the world.

In recent travels throughout South Africa, I found so much inspiration in the story of the anti-apartheid revolutionary, Nelson Mandela, who famously said, “It always seems impossible until it’s done.” I hold on to these wise words as I continue to grow and evolve along with Mae-Noel.


VOA: How are your designs and creative process connected to your identity as a woman?

Women balance countless responsibilities every day. As a woman, I am designing clothing with that in mind. I seek to create simple, yet beautiful, pieces that women can easily wear throughout their day, whatever it entails.

VOA: What does “flight of a woman” mean to you?

It speaks of the empowering journey in which a woman truly finds herself, and shares what she has discovered with others. This is the essence of my experience with Mae-Noel, and I hope to continue to grow and share my vision with women all over the world.

VOA: Why was it important for you to launch a brand using only organic materials?

I believe we all share a responsibility to care for our environment, including in what we wear. I use only organic, eco-friendly fabrics for my designs to help women adopt and maintain more sustainable lifestyles.
Mae-Noel “Amanda” Dress

VOA: What feelings do you want women to take away from your brand?

I want a woman to put on Mae-Noel and feel like a work of art. I want her to find a deep sense of joy and freedom in making each piece her own. I want her to be reminded of her true value, and inspired to use her influence as a woman to bring hope to the world around her.
“Loving my new little work space”

VOA: Describe how culture and cultural identity inspire your designs?

I am greatly inspired by women of the past. I love looking through vintage sewing patterns and imagining my own grandmother and mother wearing the designs. They are distinctly feminine, yet the women who wore them were hard-working and strong, paving the way for us today.

VOA: What part of the world inspires you the most and why?

It’s difficult for me to choose only one part of the world that inspires me; there is so much we can learn and appreciate from every place and culture. I most recently visited the country of South Africa and was deeply affected by the raw beauty of the landscape, rich diversity of its various ecosystems, and genuine hospitality of the people who welcomed us there. All that I learned and experienced in South Africa continues to inspire me to be brave in every aspect of my life.
Joana’s South African bungalow
“Black and white together. In South Africa!”
“100% washed Italian linen in a classic camel color. Slow Fashion.”
MEET THE DESIGNER
Joanna Mae-Noel Weadon and international designers like her will be showcasing one-of-a-kind handmade fashion and accessories collections in San Francisco on Saturday, November 12th at VOA Woman’s intimate shopping experience, “Flight of a Woman”.
Be Our Guest! Register to attend: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/flight-of-a-woman-tickets-27037809817

Interested in showcasing with us? We are always looking to meet international designers creating wearable art + handmade collections of clothing, accessories, art, objects or textiles. We’re based in San Francisco, California. Contact us: voawoman@gmail.com

www.voawoman.com | www.instagram.com/@voawoman

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