Portrait of Jessica Young - GORE-TEX Roadshow

    Jess Young


    Jess, a multilingual art student from London and a natural language talent, has created quite a buzz with her layered outfits on social media.

    Follow Jess on Instagram @jess.young_

    A Conversation with Jess
    How would you describe yourself?

    I’ve not got a catchy one-liner for this one yet. I’m 22, from North London, and I fit in somewhere between writer, photographer, and influencer. But the ‘I’ word makes me cringe – in short, I get dressed and film it… I come from a languages background, I speak 5 and learnt Russian for my undergrad. Getting dressed is like another language for me, a way of saying something – that’s what I’m interested in. Sharing it was just an accident that worked out… well!

    Tell us a bit about your city’s climate. What are your three favorite spots - in the summer, in the winter (outside)? What is your favorite method of transportation and why? How do you prep for bad weather if you spend time outside?

    If the London climate is anything, it’s always changing. I’m definitely a better Londoner on the sunnier days though, so when it comes to prepping for bad weather, I just don’t. I probably cry instead or disappear under an umbrella… one that I forget to pack. I’ve become a girl about cycling as of late. I like seeing London, its architecture, its histories…I’m not about to bring up the Roman Empire, but studying art history, I’m interested in how we translate lived experiences and how different spaces influence these translations. A cabbie told me the other day when you live here long enough even a lamppost morphs into a meaningful landmark. He’s got a point – cycling around London is like doing a big dot-to-dot in your head. Some spots (or ‘dots’) I’m a big fan of include the canals (dodging Camden), the Huguenot Houses in Spitalfields, and a good car boot – Peckham preferably.

    What are you wearing today? Why are you wearing it, and did you have a particular weather scenario in mind when choosing this piece? What do you love most about your GORE-TEX product?

    I’m wearing my Beams x Clarks GORE-TEX Wallabees today. On days like this when the weather could go either way, the Wallabees are a great shout. Especially when the GORE-TEX coating means I’m in no danger of having my day ruined by a dodgy-looking puddle. I like GORE-TEX because it’s synonymous with quality. Growing up playing sport, when I got my first GORE-TEX kit, I really thought I’d made it. Luckily, GORE-TEX is known for a lot more than county sports kits, but it’s a bit of a wink to my younger self when I put these on.

    Where and when did you get this... Do you have any special memories connected to this item? If you could go anywhere, where would you like to take this piece?

    I picked these up pretty recently online. I try to sell before I buy anything new. After a recent good day at the office, a car boot sale, I wanted to re-invest in something that will last, like GORE-TEX. Too often I think people imagine sustainable fashion as a literal circle – as if it’s not a one for one swap, Greta Thunberg might materialize and slap you on the wrist. Neither the problem nor the solution is as simple as that. Buying something new can still be a green option, especially when it’s something that’s sustainably made and will really last like GORE-TEX. What matters is context, and I think people skip over that too quickly. These shoes that are made to be worn and I like that. You’ll catch me anywhere in them, but your best bet is by the canals (just hopefully not in one – they’re not THAT waterproof).

    Why do you think functional clothing has gotten more popular in recent years?

    The ideal answer here is that people are making more conscious decisions about the durability of their purchases. But I don’t think that explains the Arc'teryx-dripped-inner-city-living elephant in the room. Something we don’t talk about enough with online generations is that there’s this fascination with how things work. The BTS can often be just as viewed as the fully released video. It’s an interest in the functioning of things, down to the very science of it. I think functional clothing, in that sense, feeds our appetite for explanation.

    How do you define the term “comfort” in clothing, in particular technical apparel?

    Something I don’t have to worry about! I hate stressing about wearability so I although wear a good number of layers, it’s important to me that I don’t have to be too delicate with any of them.

    What are you looking for in the next six months, and what challenges do you see that you’re excited about?

    The next 6 months are a big one for me! In July I’ll finish my master’s degree in East European Art History. Alongside that, I’m looking to expand my voice online, finding new formats to leverage not only my style but importantly, my writing. Creating videos was always just the start, so I’m excited about putting out more types of content and taking new opportunities. I’m curating my first exhibition this summer, so that’s a big challenge that I’m looking forward to. It’s still early days, but I’m excited to show people what I’ve been working on. So, keep an eye out and as always big love xo

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