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Series / Jane by Design

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From high school to high fashion!

Jane By Design is an American teen dramedy that premiered on ABC Family in 2012.

Jane Quimby (Erica Dasher), an average, everyday 16-year-old girl, winds up with a job at the prestigious fashion company Donovan Decker and a chance to work with a world-famous designer, Gray Chandler Murray (Andie MacDowell) and her quirky co-workers, Jeremy Jones (Rowley Dennis), India Jourdain (India de Beaufort). The problem? They do not know how old she is or that she is still in high school.

Now Jane must juggle her two lives. She has the help of her childhood Best Friend Billy (Nick Roux), although his hidden relationship with Jane's rival/bully Lulu Pope (Meagan Tandy) causes problems in school. To furthercomplicate thing her older brother Benjamin "Ben" Quimby (David Clayton Rogers) started to work at her school as the athletic assistant.

Tropes Include:

  • Advertised Extra: Andie McDowell as Gray. Gray usually only has about 2 scenes per episode and almost always only seen via Skype or on the phone.
  • Adults Are Useless: All the adults on this show are completely oblivious to Jane's double life. Jeremy and India visit Jane's school and don't even notice that she's a student. Ben doesn't even notice when his little sister flies all the way to Paris. Ben slowly comes around to figuring out Jane's secret but the fact that it took him so long is quite ridiculous.
  • Alpha Bitch: Lulu and India, both doing her best to make Jane’s life difficult at the fashion house / school. They do get some depth and come across more like a Lovable Alpha Bitch. They both also have shades of being Academic Alpha Bitches since Lulu's dislike of Jane stems from academic rivalry (prior to her jealousy issues with Billy) and India dislikes Gray and their co-workers favoring Jane.
  • Always Save the Girl: Billy pulls all stops and drops everything to help Jane with her job when she needs it.
  • Always Second Best: Lulu believes this in comparison to Jane in terms of Billy. Also, Nick, who thinks Jane puts her internship above himself.
  • Beta Couple:
    • Billy and Lulu have a secret physical relationship, made complicated by Jane and Lulu disliking each other.
    • Ben and Rita, one of his colleagues at school. He realizes his feelings for Rita on the school camping trip via Green-Eyed Epiphany when another teacher sets his sights on Rita.
    • Jeremy and India has a Friends with Benefits relation, but Jeremy breaks it off after India steals Jane's wedding gown design.
  • Big Bad: India is the series' main antagonist, always scheming to sabotage Jane and steal Gray's job. Jane's pretentious colleague. She always tries to sabotage Jane and steal Gray's job.
  • Big Man on Campus:
    • Nick is the usual popular high school job.
    • Ben used to very popular back in his high school days.
  • Birds of a Feather: Billy and Zoe have a lot in common.
  • Brainy Brunette: Jane and Lulu's are both smart brunettes and a lot of their animosity is based on their academic rivalry.
  • Childhood Friends: Jane and Billy have been Best Friends since they were children.
  • Childhood Friend Romance: Billy's had a Love Epiphany and came close to confessing to Jane at the fashion show until Jeremy interrupted. He apparently went to juvie the next day after he ran off, and as of the moment, lies to Jane when she asks what he meant that night ("It's you!"). Jane herself doesn't know what she wanted to hear, but both seemed disappointed.
  • Cliché Storm: Ben's ghost story during the camping trip is an In-Universe example.
  • Clingy Jealous Girl: Lulu is jealous of Billy's close relation with Jane.
  • Dude Magnet: Jane is very popular with guys. She has obtained the affections of Nick, Jeremy, Billy, and Eli.
  • The Glomp: Jane loves doing this to Billy when she's happy/excited.
  • Green-Eyed Monster: India grows increasingly jealous at Jane's success in Donovan Decker.
  • Held Gaze: Jane has this with most of her love interests, but it's especially highlighted the first time she sees Billy after his two month stay at juvie.
  • Informed Ability: Jane is apparently fantastic at her job. However, all we ever see is her screwing up even the most menial of tasks and then fretting about fixing it without anyone noticing. She always fixes the problem but she almost always requires Billy or someone else's help for it to work. This makes sense from a certain perspective though: since she always manages to cover her failures, none of the people who tell us how fantastic she is at her job (Gray mostly) are aware of how impressively she manages to screw up.
  • Meaningful Name: "Plain Jane".
  • Modesty Bedsheet:
  • The Mole: There's one in Donovan Decker. Jane thought it was India and reported her to Gray, resulting in India losing her job. It turns out it was Jeremy.
  • Pair the Spares: Nick and Lulu got together after Jane and Billy dumped them respectively, though it doesn't seem like they're fulfilled in the relationship. And understandably, they broke up.
  • Parental Abandonment: Billy's and Tommy's parents are nowhere to be seen, and it hasn't been brought up.
  • Missing Mom: Jane's and Ben's mother left them, or rather, Jane. Therefore, it made Ben sacrifice his baseball league dreams to take care of her.
  • Promotion to Parent:
    • Ben to Jane following their mother leaving them and their father passing away.
    • Tommy Nutter, Billy's older brother, due to the parents' absence. However, unlike Ben, he took little responsibility.
  • Real Song Theme Tune: "Work of Art" by Rachel Platten.
  • Post-Coital Collapse: In "The Birkin", a scene begins with India curling toes before panning up to her rolling off of Jeremy post-sex, each of them wrapped in their own Modesty Bedsheet.
  • Secretly Wealthy: Tough, streetwise Zoe is dropped off by Billy at a shack of a house. As soon as he leaves, Zoe walks past the house, through some yards and to the massive mansion that is her real home. A later episode has Billy following Zoe to this mansion. He assumes she's planning on robbing the place and is trying to drag her out when he spots a portrait of Zoe in a posh outfit on the wall and realizes this is her home. She explains that she puts on her "street" act because, at her old school, she was either an outcast due to her wealth or people just wanting to be friends with her because she was rich. She thus took advantage of being transferred for a fresh start.
  • "Shut Up" Kiss: Billy kisses Lulu to shush her in "The Birkin".