Fruits of Venus is an ever-evolving portrait of the divine feminine. Beauty in all of its manifestations. Wearable and cultivated art for every form, following the nature and curvature of each individual body. Curated and lovingly designed out of Philadelphia by me, Carly Mckown. Each piece is one-of-a-kind and hand painted. Crafted with only vintage and upcycled materials, these garments are meant to inspire your inner whimsy, play, spontaneity, love and warmth. To be worn daily and treasured forever.

 In 2016, I graduated from California College of the Arts with a degree in Painting and Drawing. After becoming disillusioned by the art world and leaving the Bay Area, I moved to New York City with the sole intention of starting a band. For four years, I was in a committed, monogamous relationship with music. Though I secretly missed painting, I wrote off fine art entirely. I had endless lists of unfinished project ideas that were always trumped by music. I was perpetually convincing myself that it “wasn’t the right time”.

I finally began experimenting with clothing as a medium in 2020. By that spring, Covid had already cemented its place in the normal world. My "temporary" new living situation, back at my parents house, was starting to feel permanent and claustrophobic. Without a job or any kind of plan, I knew I would have to give up my apartment in Brooklyn. This wasn't the hard part, giving up New York was easy. I'd fallen out of love with the city long before Covid, worn out and drowning in the grind of it all. By the time the summer rolled around, I welcomed the unknown, the emptiness, and the bizarre surplus of free time.

While forcing myself to write music, I stripped the entire process down to the bones. Gradually, creating began to feel like pulling teeth. Painful, calculated, void of all pleasure. In the midst of mental chaos, with nothing but time, I became restless. I wanted to make things again. Things that I could touch and hold. Things that weren’t the sum total of my deepest heart aches and obsessive thoughts. I wanted to comfort and nourish my creative hunger. I had the classic and futile urge to reinvent myself. 

I began to scratch the itch by drawing again, but it wasn’t enough. I needed it to bleed. I needed to be inside the art, to envelope myself in beautiful things. I was desperate for relief from the harsh reality of the real world, if only for a few hours a day.  During that period I had vivid dreams of suitcases filled with extraordinarily bold and colorful pieces of clothing. I would wake up with visions of patterns and colors and clothes I wished I owned. I set out to create a new body of work but instead of working on paper or canvas I worked with clothes from my own closet.

 The beginnings of Fruits of Venus coincided with the beginning of a softening and a kind of surrender. It restored my desire to play, and renewed my love of rule breaking. Today, this project continues to feed my creativity and love of trying new things. Fruits of Venus a living promise to myself to remain open and stay curious.