Something said often in our team is, where there is shared passion, the potential for collaboration is far more valuable than competition. It’s a belief that speaks to the core of our mission. With over 20 collaborations (and counting), we take pride in working with different artisans, designers, and brands, connecting people from different backgrounds to tell their stories through our prints. Together with our friends at Miakoda, an eco-friendly, sustainable, and ethically made company based in New York, we’re adding a selection of loungewear styles. The Robe, The Bodysuit, and The Bralette – crafted for comfort and confidence, these pieces are our intimates for your everyday.
How did Miakoda begin? What did the journey look like to get you where you are now?
Miakoda began in 2012 when I graduated from design school with a degree in fashion design with a strong distaste for the unsustainable and unethical practices that are unfortunately very common in the fashion industry. I wanted to work for a brand and contribute to the world as a designer in a meaningful way, but couldn’t find a brand that fit all the ethical and aesthetic boxes that I was looking to cross off. That’s how Miakoda began. I teamed up with my sister, Laura, who shares my passion for sustainability and living mindfully and ethically, to create our company! The journey to get to where we are today has been fun, challenging, exciting, difficult… but mostly extremely rewarding to put something out in the world that we are so proud of and stand behind 1000%.
Why the focus on ‘comfy clothing’?
Throughout my life, I’ve always noticed how much my outfit and how I feel in my clothing and in my body affects my mood. I can remember days in college where I wore outfits that were so uncomfortable because they “looked good.” At the end of the day, I’d rush home to change into something comfortable, and my mood would lift immediately. We never want to create a garment that someone can’t wait to take off.
What was the experience of the collaboration like for you, and what did you learn from it?
Collaborating with Matter has been really fun and really exciting. What I personally have loved the most was connecting with another brand that truly believe in and embodies what we believe in! I have definitely learned to give up control (I am in charge of all of Miakoda’s production and in the factory regularly ensuring everything is how I want it to be… in this collaboration, Matter took care of the production in India, and that was a fun change of pace!). We love collaborating with like-minded brands because it allows us to work towards a common goal of making the world and the fashion industry a more ethical and sustainable place. PLUS we are so in love with the pieces we’ve created in this collaboration!
Can you tell us more about the intention behind working with eco-friendly plant based materials? Are there certain challenges with this?
We choose to use plant-based materials because we are a vegan owned company. We love to grow plants, eat plants, and wear plants! Animal agriculture is a tricky thing and we don’t believe in using animals for our own benefit, and although we have been on sustainable farms that sheer their sheep, turn that wool into yarn, and knit it in a very loving and ethical way, on a large scale, most animal agriculture isn’t so loving or ethical.
What does sustainable fashion mean to you?
To me, it means clothing that thinks about where it came from, how it affects the people who worked to bring it into existence, and how it will hold up and last for the person buying it. Sustainable fashion is clothing that is made from eco friendly materials, cut and sewn in ethical factories, and made to last.
What is it like working with family?
We love being family owned. Starting Miakoda together has allowed us to truly create something that we really love and feel extremely strongly about.
Describe your creative process for us. What steps do you go through when you’re working through a project?
I think my creative process changes and is specific to each project. Designing new pieces, coming up with new photoshoot ideas, creating content for social media or email campaigns. No matter what, I love to be visually inspired and spend a ton of time on the Internet, out in nature, exploring, researching, and on Pinterest! I will keep digital folders of pictures, phrases, little jotted down notes so when I can sit down and put all my thoughts together, I have tons of visual inspiration and thoughts in front of me.
#ChangeBeyondTextiles reminds me of a quote that used to bother me, but that I now love. The quote is “Clothes aren’t going to change the world. The women who wear them will’ – Anne Klein. This quote bothered me because I wanted to change the world by making ethical and sustainable clothing. Yes, these garments are important to create, but ethical and sustainable clothing hanging on a rack will NOT change the world. Beyond the clothing… Beyond the textile… the garment allows awesome humans to go out into their lives (wearing awesome clothing) where they can create their own stories and follow their own passions to make the world a really awesome place.
What is your hope for the fashion industry 10 years down the line?
I’m not sure if this will happen in the next 10 years… but ideally, it would be amazing to see a day where “ethically fashion” and “sustainable fashion” isn’t a “thing” because it’s standard. Realistically, I would love to see the ethical and sustainable fashion industry grow—especially in terms of how many consumers choose to shop this way because it feels important to them!
3 styles, 2 artisan techniques, 1 new print. Natural dyed and handcrafted in batik, sign up for our mailing list to get first updates on when the loungewear range is out.