Austin Juno: Sustainable Runway Fashion


Jesse Barber

Austin Juno, an apperal design major, sits in his home studio in Boone. He started his fashion brand, “Juno” in high school as a form of artistic expression and an outlet from his small town.

Georgia Privott, A&C Reporter

Austin “Billy” Juno goes beyond what his clothing brand Juno Studios looks like. He dives into the story behind each collection, the ethics in the fashion industry and his audience’s emotions. 

The senior apparel design major said he appreciates the process of making a garment and has found his passion in creating his own.

“I appreciate a well-tailored suit or well-cut dress because not everyone knows it. I think it’s the same with high or modern art. Somebody who’s not educated on that artist might look at that painting and think it is terrible, but someone who’s educated on it will think it is incredible,” Juno said. 

Juno applied this consideration with his collections, “Space Outsider” and “Made in,” and he is currently working on a third collection. 

“Space Outsider’s (inspiration) came from rural America because I felt like an outsider when I was growing up. I had all these things that made me who I am, and they probably shouldn’t work together, but they do,” Juno said. 

Juno said the “Space Outsider” collection was a combination of metallic and futuristic themes, with aspects of rural life. 

His most recent collection, “Made in,” took on a different and more jarring effect for his audience by throwing fake blood on models as they walked down the runway. 

“It was meant to be very uncomfortable because it was about sweatshops and factory workers in the fashion industry. I wanted people to crawl in their skin so it would stick with them,” Juno said. “The music and the film was very graphic. It was meant for people to see this gruesome thing that is happening and feel emotion for it.” 

Juno said he loves putting on his own fashion shows because he is able to control the environment that the audience experiences. 

After interning this summer for sustainable fashion company Jussara Lee, Juno began changing the way he made his clothing.

“I am using all organic cotton for my upcoming collection. Anything I use is going to either be organically grown or recycled. I’m actually working with a billboard company, and I get their old billboard scrap,” Juno said. 

In his upcoming collection, Juno is taking inspiration from pieces he already owns and is creating something based on their looks. The collection will also be environmentally friendly and contain pieces wearable for daily life. 

“As I mature and grow into who I am, my work is also doing that. It’s an extension of what point I’m at in life. I think that is when work is really authentic,” Juno said.