Riley Reed arrived in Nashville from her home state of Illinois nearly 15 years ago. Since then, she worked her way through college at Nashville`s #1 honky-tonk, and the home of traditional country music, Robert`s Western World. Here she gained some up close and personal, true blue honky tonk inspiration along the way, and was even voted 'best bartender' by the Nashville Scene 2 years in a row!
With an interest in historic fashion and the completion of her Associates Degree from the International Academy of Design and Technology in 2008, she got the chance to intern with the legendary western wear designer Manuel, furthering her creative scope and inspiration and continues to learn skills from Manuel today.
Upon completion of her Bachelor`s degree in Fashion Design and Merchandising, Riley returned home briefly to work with an independent designer based out of Chicago, Anastasia Chatzka. Upon returning to Nashville, Riley accepted a job with the queen of Nashville western wear, Katy K, at her shop Katy K’s Designs and Ranch Dressing. Here she created custom vintage-inspired pieces.
With the inspiration and knowledge she learned from the crème de la crème of Nashville western designers, Riley still continues to create wonderfully nostalgic pieces of wearable western art. Every year she curates the annual “Western Roundup Fashion Show” at the Nashville Boogie vintage weekender, which showcases her fellow contemporary western wear designers.
Most notably in 2019, Riley was part of the team that constructed Dolly Parton’s iconic 2019 Grammy Dress. She has occasionally worked on Dolly’s wardrobe team since 2018. Riley also designed and constructed the new costumes for the Grand Ole Opry square dancers, which debuted Saturday, May 4th, 2019 at Randy Travis’s 60th birthday celebration. These costumes can be seen on stage at the Grand Ole Opry every Saturday night.
Check out Rhinestone Cowboy: a film in the works about is the rags-to-rhinestone story of the legendary Nudie Cohn.
+ Margo Price
+Tanya Montana Coe
+Lauren Ray Grisham (American Pickers)
+Dolly Parton (wardrobe assistant)
After design school, Riley apprenticed under Manuel, the Rhinestone Rembrandt and tailor to the stars.