Tuesday, April 28, 2009
New Friends: SUST - An Organic Women's Clothing Company
SUST ad in the May 2009 Issue of Dwell.
My first reaction while I was reading through the latest issue of Dwell Magazine and came upon an ad for a clothing company called SUST was, good name! We've been calling ourselves Susty's since we first got started over a year ago and are always on the look out for long lost friends. Couple that with the fact that I also use arrows in my marketing materials for my consulting firm Be One Creative and my heart started to beat a bit faster. After digging a bit more to learn about the company, its product, and its founders I started to uncover some striking similarities about how our companies came to be.
As we are always researching ways to diversify our Venture Space, we recently began discussing the incorporation of retail to supplement our co-working office and conference space. We will be coming out with our own line of t-shirts during the summer but we are also researching a collection of the latest sustainable, ethical, and responsible clothing lines. This in mind I contacted SUST to get further information.
SUST, Spring 2009
SUST is based out of San Francisco and was started by two childhood friends named Tristan Gribbin and Marion McKee. Tristan and Marion went through high school and college together in Northern California, which has always been a vortex for fresh thought and progressive culture. After working on their own careers and projects they recently came together in order to harness their creative potential and to realize their dream of harnessing the fashion industry to promote a positive movement of environmental sustainability and social responsibility.
Generation Sustain has a similar story. We were started by two sets of childhood friends who grew up together, attended the same highschool and college, and came together to start a business based on the positive and inclusive communication of sustainability. Tory Hanna and myself studied Environmental Design and have been working on harnessing the influential power of the built environment to create positive social change. We've always agreed that if the buildings and landscapes that we walk through every day have the power to influence our collective behavior, so must what we walk around in, clothes. Ethical and sustainable fashion, marketing, and product development are what Alee Marsh and Jennifer Kehoe have begun working on. The pair will both be graduating this year from the University of Massachusetts and we're excited to see what they will work on when they have a lot more time on their hands.
SUST's collection is made entirely of US grown 100 percent organic cotton in San Francisco. By working with US based cotton growers, local California based manufacturers, and mainataining a close relationship with the production of their garments, SUST ensures that true "fair trade principles are woven in every step of the way." Portions of their proceeds are also given to support ecological causes.
Their Spring 2009 collection invokes a minimalist beauty that seems to be very much a part of their business ideals. Their bright colors and simple elegant fits are depicted well in the photos of the collection taken in Iceland by Tristan's Icelandic husband, photographer and director Stefan Arni. The collection reminds me of the form of design that has influenced me the most, Scandanavian Minimalism. That said, if I were a woman, I'd wear their clothing. The clean lines and quality materials highlighted by bright colors suggest a positive break in a cluttered dreary environment.
SUST, Spring 2009
An example of Scandinavian Minimalism I spent much time in and around.
Shot facing north next to the "Black Diamond" Library in Copenhagen, Denmark.
We are happy to have come across this exciting new business and are looking forward to somehow working with SUST in the future. Our similar paths to starting our ventures speak to a new paradigm for innovation and sustainability, one that has moved away from alarmist environmentalism and cause elitism and will hopefully harness the power to influence through accessibility and quality design.
More information about SUST and photographs of their spring line can be viewed at www.getsust.com.