Made in the USA
If you are a person seeking a coat that is Made in the USA, you could be doing this for a variety of reasons. You may want to promote and support your local economy, you may believe that US regulations ensure better working conditions wages and, or you may think that buying local reduces your carbon footprint.
And while I believe all of these points to be fantastic reasons for wanting to purchase a women's coat that was Made in America, I wanted to share with you MY reasons for having my coats sewn in the USA.
After all, it wasn't long ago, that I struggled to find a nice coat for myself that was Made in the USA
Having my line of women's coats and jackets sewn in the USA has been important to me since the inception of this outerwear brand. In addition to wanting to ensure quality, oversee working conditions, and guarantee fair wages...
I want to preserve my craft.
Sewing is a skill that my grandmother taught my mother, and my mother taught me. And while neither my mother or grandmother were paid seamstresses, they used their skills in sewing to mend worn items, express their style, and advance their lives and careers.
My grandmother came from humble beginnings. She was a fierce woman with a fighting spirit who always wanted more than what she had. In the 1950’s she set out to get her real estate license and established her own company. She made her own clothing and wore costume jewelry. She dressed for the life that she wanted, rather than the life that she lived. She combined fashion and self confidence with her drive for success in order to achieve her goals.
Sewing has always kept me employed. After college most of my 20’s were spent behind a sewing machine. I floated amongst local theatre productions to craft costumes for the stage. In between these gigs I would do on-site alterations for fashion photo shoots. In my thirties, I eventually worked as a designer for a major retailer. I was known for having a sewing machine on my desk (next to my computer) where I would mock up small samples of ideas. Back then, my drawing skills were pretty horrible so my sewn mock ups allowed me to express my ideas in a way that not everyone could do.
I took this technique with me when I later landed a job teaching at a local fashion design school. I taught my students to use sewing as a means of communication. My most fulfilling moments came while watching the spark in my students eyes as they learned the arts of sewing and pattern making. The endless possibilities made apparent in an instant by a quick demonstration. I've seen typically nervous and distracted students surrender their minds to peace and calm with repetitive hand stitches all evenly spaced and perfectly timed. Many of them commented on how nice it felt to just "unplug" and "make."
Women owned means supporting women
As a business owner, I have pledged that my coats and jackets will always be sewn in the USA. Being sewn in the USA, (to me) ensures that other women can have the opportunities that I have had here in this country. It ensures that my craft lives on in my home and that “students” in the future can still experience the therapeutic qualities that come with this art. It ensures that my craft does not go the way of archaic traditions or art forms that once were. It keeps my craft present in the here, now, and future.
Having my coats made in the USA has benefitted my customers in so many ways as well. It has allowed me to offer a quick turn around Made-to-Order, and Size Inclusive pieces quickly without holding a large, wasteful inventory. It has allowed me to provide my customers with exactly what they are looking for in quality and size while keeping our carbon footprint small and providing transparency into this outerwear brand.
Communicating through a Bespoke Coat
Made in the USA matters (to me) for my own personal reasons. And while I don't expect every woman to share in my exact journey, I hope that every woman can find a way of expressing her own values through her outerwear. Because after all, it's the most important fashion statement a woman can make.