I recently read this great article from the New York Times about whether or not small designers will be able to make it through COVID without having to close down.
You can also read the article here >
One thing that has become quite clear during this time for me as a store owner and as someone who is buying from small designers is how important it is to keep these designers alive. I have seen the inside of this industry and I can assure you, the small, independent designers are doing so many things right, well and with integrity. It’s not to say there aren’t large fashion firms also doing things with integrity, but it is rare to find a small designer who lacks passion, sustainability and beautiful craftsmanship and I can’t say the same for the latter.
This time in quarantine, at home, being quiet, turning inward, have sharpened my focus on these smaller designers and reinspired me to hone in on the products that I can stand behind, support and sell. When I know the designer, when I get to see their process, understand who they are working with in production, when I develop a relationship with these people, and I love and believe in their product, it is a different level of retail.
This spring, we have new designers coming into the store. One of them, Atelier Delphine, was one of my personal favorites. As I get older, I want to dress and feel a certain level of curation—not to be a snob or to be inaccessible or to make it hard, but I want to be purposeful with what I wear. It’s not about the clothes needing to be older, younger, revealing, modest...etc, but it’s about the clothes being representative of who I am and what I am trying to express.
I think there is a place that exists between mature and sexy and that is the place I want to live in. Mature feels old, baggy, shapeless. Sexy feels young, objectified, limited. There’s a sweet spot for me where the clothing is polished, specific, meant to be, on purpose, elegant, well crafted and then it feels right. It reminds me of any kind of artwork that if not sequenced, or crafted or curated, it misses and the feeling gets lost or miscommunicated.
And so, I am finding these small designers to be inspiring me and to be nailing again and again this space I am searching for—it is neither old nor young, bland nor loud—it is a nice place where classics meet art.
Atelier Delphine is designed in LA by Yuka Izutsu. Its high quality fabrics and laid back look are unconventional and cozy.
Let me know what you think.