The new collection is actually a return to form. Monsegue began her clothing career designing and embellishing pieces, but broadened her medium when she wanted to explore more. “It felt like the same forms of fashion or just people putting a graphic in the middle,” she says. “I shifted from that.” Hailing from Houston, she was surrounded by the storied airbrushing culture in the city from a young age. “There are old school airbrush flea market stands, and that is where I got my inspiration when I first started.” It’s also a family tradition: Her father and grandfather airbrush cars as well.
Monsegue’s first piece of clothing she made was an unairbrushed, patchwork long-sleeved T-shirt that she made from different car race tees. Constantly working and reworking her clothing, she’s always had a punk sensibility. She now describes her style as “circus fantasy.” Her first attempt at airbrushing was back in 2018, when she tried to make Halloween shirts for friends. It didn’t go quite as planned. “It was completely frustrating to work the machine,” she says. “But it intrigued me to keep working.” Currently, Monsegue thinks of her clothing as a canvas with no boundaries, airbrushing whatever is in her mind.
Her creations typically have a sexy spookiness to them—a theme that she culls from horror movies. For the Los Angeles-based label No Sesso, she created a shirt dress boasting a sheer skirt with a demonic dragon airbrushed on the front, as well as a ’70s-style jacket with a fur trim and lining dotted with spiky stars that almost resemble cobwebs. A large, eerie skull takes up the entire front of an otherwise classic button-up.
Typically, Monsegue pulls inspiration from horror movies and the late 18th-century Spanish artist Francisco Goya, whose own work had a supernatural-nightmare tinge (See: “Saturn Devouring His Son”). “He was always using replications of the war of that time in Spain,” she says. Monsegue also cites Jean Paul Gaultier, someone who often would infuse layered graphics into his designs, as an inspiration. “There is a way that he would use darker imagery, but on a chic dress,” she says.
Each piece Monsegue makes sells out, and each is one-of-a-kind and specialized. “It goes so fast,” she says. “I’d like to do more on a larger scale.” So maybe that rarity won’t always be the case.
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