Jodie, founder of Clarence and Mabel shares her story on running a completely sustainable business.
Vintage clothes is a passion many of us share. Reusing items that have a story behind them rather than just purchasing a random piece of fast fashion that lacks a story and character behind it.
Clarence and Mabel are the ultimate vintage focused brand with their story of completely up cycling vintage fabrics into beautiful custom dresses.
We were intrigued to speak to Clarence and Mabel founder Jodie about how her business practices solely on creating sustainable dresses with only vintage fabrics.
Over to Jodie…
Clarence and Mabel is a beautiful brand and with using vintage fabrics at its core, what inspired you to go down this route?
My mother was a seamstress, and for my 13th birthday I asked my parents for a sewing machine. For almost as long as I can remember I’ve been passionate about sewing and dressmaking. This passion has now evolved into my label, Clarence and Mabel, where I createunique, one of a kind items of clothing from natural fibre textiles and salvaged vintage fabrics. I’ve had a life-long obsession with salvaging unique fabrics. When I’m making a garment I love wondering what stories are ingrained in the fibres, what journey a piece of fabric may have been on, and then giving it a new life, with many stories yet to tell.
Why is reusing fabrics and sustainability so important to you as a brand?
It is so important to me that I don’t contribute to thedevastating impacts of the fashion industries consumption and waste cycle. I’m always thinking about how I can do better by focusing on a more circular approach to design, where existing fabrics are upcycled and garments are subsequently repaired when needed.
What are some of your favourite pieces you have and are you excited to source more vintage pieces to make more products?
I spend so much time trawling through vintage markets, and thrift shops, looking for the next vintage treasure. You just can’t recreate the colour and texture that is unique to vintage fabrics. It comes from the years of life already lived and that’s what makes them so precious. It’s also important to me to only use vintage finds in my designs that are ready for a new life. All the other piecesthat I find that are just too precious to cut into are added to my personal collection to be treasured.
What is next for your brand product wise and what are some exciting things ahead for you?
I’m currently working on an exciting collaboration with another artist, incorporating plant-dyed sustainably upcycled natural fibre fabrics into my garments to create truly special one of a kind pieces.