Trunk Show + Sample Sale!

You might have seen on social media that LAUNCH, a boutique in downtown Houston is featuring different groups of local designers each month in their space. We were asked to take part in their April lineup, along with several other mens + womenswear focused brands. 

In addition to being generally awesome, they have invited us to host a trunk show + sample sale this weekend, and we'd love you all to come! We will be there in person from 10-6pm and will have some refreshments on hand in the afternoon. This is our first ever sample sale, and we will be finally letting go of some of our early stuff (from when I used to sew everything!) as well as some vintage finds we've collected along the way. Hope to see you guys there!

Kathrine Zeren trunk show + sample sale!

Good Reads | Transparency in Pricing

Better Together

I have recently found myself often caught in conversation with other designers who have similar convictions about what the role of an designer could and/or should be, and I think that a general conclusion has been that if any of us want to have a chance at competing with the big box stores or corporate brands, we will have to be more open to promoting and celebrating each other's work, especially when that work has the potential to create lasting change in the industry and to help make the world a better place.

As mentioned in my previous post, I am going to start sharing some of the articles I have recently come across which have moved me on a very personal level. Some are by other designers, some are by writers following a lead, but I believe that all are extremely relevant in today's political and cultural climate. The first step in dealing with a problem is to acknowledge its existence, right? So, let's get down to business and begin the conversation.

Today, I've chosen to share a few articles about and from a Nashville based designer Liz Pape, the founder and CEO of Nashville-based Elizabeth Suzann, who has been working to be more transparent about her pricing strategy, while also being frank about what it actually costs to make the clothes we wear. While it might seem strange to promote another designer's work, I really do believe that we will all have a better chance of being change agents if we collectively promote the good that anyone is doing. We won't all go about business/design in the same way, and I believe that there's plenty of limelight to share.

Image by Elizabeth Suzann

Image by Elizabeth Suzann

In this interview with Racked, Liz discusses many of the struggles she has had as a designer and small business owner with wanting to make beautiful clothing that is also priced fairly in an industry often ruled by who can do it faster and cheaper:

Here's How Much

it Actually Costs to

Make Your Shirt

 

For an even more in-depth look at her business model and pricing strategy, I would also recommend taking a look at her blog post from earlier this year which actually led to the interview:

Money Talk

 

It's complete with charts, graphs, and drawings to illustrate how and why she prices her clothing and accessories. It's long, but very informative and definitely worth your time!

On a personal note.

Kathrine Zeren

I've been relatively quiet both here and on social media since the holidays, partly because I was worn out and then sick for a bit, and partly because I felt the need to to take a step back as I considered the future might look like for this company. As you might imagine, I've been doing a lot of reading and soul searching. In the process, it has become increasingly clear to me that my role as a designer and entrepreneur is not one to be taken lightly.

I realize that I've discussed this before, but much of my research has given me a heavier sense of urgency. For example, did you know that the apparel industry is second only to the oil industry in contributing to global warming? Did you know that in the past 20 years, we have collectively been buying twice as much per year, while discarding of old clothing twice as fast? Did you know that the harvesting of inorganic cotton has led to higher cancer rates among farmers, from Texas to India?

While bringing things to you that are "sustainably sourced & American made" has been central to my mission for some time, I have come to realize that more must be said about why these principles are so dear to my heart. In the coming weeks and months, I plan to start discussing more of these issues, especially on the blog. I would like to share some of the articles I've come across that have both angered and moved me to tears.

I want to be clear that I am not trying to shame anyone from my soapbox, but rather bring undisputed facts to the forefront of the conversation. As Al Gore has said in the past, these truths may be "inconvenient", but that doesn't deny their veracity. I invite you to struggle along with me on this journey. It might be difficult, probably won't be pretty, and will most certainly challenge the way I approach things. But, I have come to believe that transparency - even in times of change - can be a good thing.

- Kathrine

A lovely day for a wedding

This post is rather late, but here are some pictures from when Jeff and I were married last May. It was a lovely day, despite the spring showers. There's nothing quite like gathering with all of your closest family and friends as you make a life-long commitment to someone, especially when that person is your best friend. 

Jeff wore our solid black (diamond point) bow tie. His groomsmen wore neckties in the same fabric. They were styled with navy suits and vintage white hankies for pocket squares. It was simple, but clean and elegant. 

Enjoy xx

All images courtesy of Joseph West.