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Deer Designer: A Profile on Casey Desmond

            Surrounded by synthesizers, brightly colored fabrics and deer figurines, musician and fashion designer, Casey Desmond, is, quite literally, at home as she sits in the studio room of her apartment in Brighton, MA. A tour of the apartment reveals a living room housing three dogs, a small kitchen and a performance venue for her dad’s company, Sound Museum Music. All of the rooms display old photo and paintings and quirky knick-knacks. “Chatskis,” Desmond, 25, calls the decorations as she sits cross-legged at her computer desk, her bright red hair with purple undertones contrasting against her black romper and metallic black leggings. Even after appearing on the cover of Improper Bostonian Magazine and performing as a contestant on NBC’s The Voice, Desmond remains as humble as her eccentric abode.

            Although many of the “chatskis” are her parents’, the deer figurines are all her own. In fact, she loves the creatures so much that she named her fashion line, OHDEERGOD, which was released in August at the Middle East Upstairs, after them.Along with having models display her designs, Desmond performed in one of her home-made leotards and sold t-shirts imprinted with the OHDEERGOD logo—a Native American inspired deer god that Desmond drew herself.
            Desmond considers her designs  an extension of herself and her electro-pop music. The idea for their creation  started when she was asked to perform at a fashion show.
           “I’ve always really liked making stuff and I just decided randomly like two days before that I would make an outfit for the event,” says Desmond. “It was awesome, people really loved it and I got lots of compliments.”
           The positive feedback encouraged Desmond to create more of her own outfits and since then, she always performs in her home-made creations.
             “I like feel in a lot of cases [music and fashion] go hand in hand because music isn’t just about music for me; it’s about performance…I like the whole theatrical aspect, and the whole experience of going to a show where someone creates this spectacle for you,” Desmond says. “Also, if you are trying to market yourself and brand yourself then it is cool to establish a certain look, so the stuff that I like to where that is really colorful and crazy is just a projection of who I am,” she adds.
Desmond’s complete line consists of sparkly and cheeky leotards made of striking pinks, deep blues and bright purples; screen-printed with the deer god logo in neon oranges and lime greens; and animal costumes including an owl, a fox, a wolf, and of course, a deer head.
             “I think it would cool to design things that everyone can wear, but right now I just focus on really abstract crazy pieces and stuff,” says Desmond. “If ever had the opportunity to have a real line, then I would use the things that I’ve been working on as inspiration to make something for other people.”
To start on the road of creating everyday designs, Desmond is working on making her fashions available online and taking personalized requests. Although Desmond left the Art Institute of Boston a few years ago to pursue her music career, she would like to go back to school eventually to strengthen her design and styling skills.
            “I want to make enough money as a musician to be happy and have my studio and put myself through like intense awesome fashion training, just because I want to. I don’t know, maybe I could make money off of it, but I just really love it,” she says. “I secretly want to run away to like some crazy European fashion school and have them be strict and mean and say ‘no, you must learn the ways!’” she laughs.
            For now, Desmond is excited about upcoming performances and the release of her first full-length album since 2007, and continues to incorporate her designs into her musical career.
           “I am really am going to keep working hard to make [clothes] that the public can enjoy, but I am also focusing on performance, but I want [music and fashion] to be tied together,” she says. “I never want to give either of them up.”
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