A new sustainable fashion magazine is out! Sumzine’s first issue is hot off the press. Inside what they are about: “If there is anything that I won’t forget from my undergrad education, it is the lucid Spanish proverb, “poor people can’t afford cheap things.” This European ethos of quality seems so novel in today’s blog-eat-blog world, but when I stand on that one corner in SoHo and see two H&Ms facing each other, it blasts in my head.. After some candid talks with the influencers in this issue, a couple things became clear. First, there is a slow fashion movement already happening in our subconscious. We may have different approaches—by creating seasonless products, upcycling, or preserving authenticity—but it’s there. Also, there is a new vocabulary evolving. Collage dressing, batch systems, and second market are some of the terms being used to describe the new guard of sustainability.
More than one road leads to conservative consumption. Whether you’re reusing, upcycling, or buying the best of the best as a consumer, you’re making the right move in our book, because somewhere in there you are preventing more waste from being made.”
Here’s a sneak peek at some interviews the first issues has to offer–
In 2009, Molly Keogh and Maryanne Mathias took a risk. Having two separate lives as a stylist in Los Angeles and as a designer in Montreal respectively, they were both ready for a change. When catching up at a high school reunion after 10 years apart, the two went all-in. Osei-Duro started as an experiment, but quickly turned into much more.
While the brand does maintain a discreet identity with the use of beautiful colors and flip flopped prints, it always strives on a daily basis to be a transparent business. Molly and Maryanne love the process of supporting the industry with local Ghanaians in Accra as much as they love dreaming up the next collection. This love and passion jumps right off of the clothes, and certainly transforms the wearer into the coolest girl in the room.
Tell me about that first badass line of up-cycled leather biker jackets. Did you all spend a lot of time buying a bunch of big, ugly old leather jackets at first to collect the scrap leather? Tell me a little about the design process and the production.
Carl: The design process looks pretty much like it does at any other fashion label, except for the fact neither of us has any formal education, haha. We go through old photographs of our style icons and make our own interpretations of both well-known and forgotten classics. Most of our production is based in Bangkok now as they have an enormous excess of vintage clothing.
Felix: We have formed an excellent workplace their together with our Thai friend Yutama, an unbelievably creative individual. Yutama has previously worked with a brand to make backpacks and bags from old bicycle tire tubes. And yes, we buy a lot of ugly old leather items and reuse them for our patterns. We also buy scraps and over-spill from the leather industry, so our model is based around altered vintage leathers as well as recycled scrap materials.
What is your own personal buying philosophy when you go shopping?
I usually buy very simple clothing, stuff that is functional. I’m an online shopper, I do some research. Occasionally it will happen, but I normally won’t walk into a shop and drop a bunch of money on something that I just saw for the first time. It’s usually, Oh, I need a jacket! then I will go to the brands that I love and compare and contrast, go try it on, and then decide what to buy. There are no limitations, but I tend to buy more expensive things less often because they usually last longer. Longevity is a priority.
Elliot Aronow has started a lot of things in his day. Whether it be a mosh pit, a zine, or a site, he’s done it and in multiples. He earned his chops as an editor for Fader Magazine before launching the taste-making music site RCRD LBL (just to shut Lars Ulrich up). Then he went on to launch the TV show and zine, Our Show, where he interviewed and got weird with some of music’s finest.
Last year, Elliot launched his latest incarnation: #jacques-Elliott. It’s the collision of Malcolm McLaren and Ralph Lauren, a punk rock gentleman’s attitude and worldview. To make it easy on the fellas, he recently released his third collection of #jacques-Elliott ties. But that’s beginning of the story. On the first chilly afternoon of the year, we caught up with Elliot in his home in Williamsburg.
Be sure to check out the magazine and we look forward to watching their growth!
images from Sumzine