Molly O’Brien: Living the Dream


Courtesy of Molly O'Brien

Senior Molly O’Brien

Katie Billington, Staff Member


Molly O’Brien, senior, has been designing and creating clothes since she was 8-years-old.

She first started when she went to a fashion camp at her old school, but she really took to it after her grandmother taught her to sew. After that, O’Brien used her freshman sewing class and YouTube to learn more about designing and the opportunities that it offers.

“I guess I’ve kinda always been interested in designing, but when I lived in Nebraska, they had a fashion week and I saw they were holding auditions for it so I was like ‘okay, I’m going to try out,’” O’Brien said. “That’s kind of when I decided that I wanted to really learn to actually make things and just learn more about designing and making clothes.”

O’Brien has faced a great number of setbacks along her career that pushed her to grow as a fashion designer. 

“For my first fashion show, I definitely got some rough feedback because at that time, I didn’t really know what exactly a collection was,” O’Brien said. “I didn’t really know everything that went into designing, so I definitely have learned some things the hard way, but I guess in the end that’s how you understand things better.”

Since O’Brien has started her career in the fashion industry, she has taken part in three different fashion weeks in Omaha, Kansas City, and Vancouver with hopes to go to either L.A. or New York in the spring. O’Brien has designed clothes for celebrities and is going to be on the second season of the show Project Runway Junior, airing on Thursday, December 22.

“I’m so excited to see it air Molly O’Brien knows what it takes to be a teen fashion designer. It’s just going to be so awesome and it was so fun, like meeting Tim Gunn was amazing and it was just so cool,” O’Brien said. “Just being in the workroom where project runway designers work is just a really cool feeling. It’s definitely very stressful but it’s so amazing at the same time so there’s just so many emotions going on.”

O’Brien went on to explain that keeping up with her schoolwork and her career at the same time has its challenges.

“It’s definitely hard. Any free time that I do have, I have to just try to work on business stuff as well as schoolwork. Since it’s my senior year, it’s a lot easier because I don’t have as many classes, but I missed the first couple of weeks of school so it was hard to keep up with everything,” O’Brien said. “I guess now I’m used to it and I just make time. It’s like doing sports and you just have to make time for it.”

O’Brien plans to go to continue her career by going to a larger fashion week and then move into manufacturing to get her business to take off. She then plans to go to college in New York or L.A. to continue her budding career.

“Fashion is a fun way to just express yourself and it’s fun to design, there’s so many great opportunities in different parts of the industry and I just have a lot of fun doing it all,” O’Brien said. “I think it just has so much to offer, there’s so many different parts of the fashion industry that you wouldn’t even think of and designing is definitely a big part of it.”