This week, my guest is Clare Lewis of Retold Vintage.
Thanks for listening!
Retold was founded by Clare Lewis in 2018 with the mission of curating beautiful vintage pieces for lovers of modern and contemporary fashion. Based in east London, Clare handpicks each item – her edited finds are listed on retoldvintage.com every week! Clare hopes Retold encourages more women to consider vintage and secondhand shopping as an alternative to buying new which in turn will contribute to a more circular and sustainable fashion model.
We discuss vintage (and much more) in this week’s podcast episode, but here, Clare shares her tips for incorporating vintage into a wardrobe of new.
“Avoid the head to toe vintage look! Unless thats your vibe, which is totally cool, but if you are new to vintage then start off small. It may simply be an accessory such as a vintage belt or bag or a beautiful silk blouse that you can wear with your favourite jeans.”
“For me, adding a pair of modern shoes to a vintage dress or skirt instantly makes the outfit still feel current yet unique and individual.”
“Make a tape measure your new best friend! Avoid referring to labels on vintage clothes; sizing has changed so dramatically over the years and also depends on the country you are in, so ditch the habit and shop with a tape measure instead. YouTube has some great videos on how to measure yourself so make a note of all your details and refer to this when shopping for vintage. You may be pleasantly surprised!”
“Be you! The joy of vintage is there is something out there for everyone’s style and taste. Just because you start shopping vintage, you have to change your whole aesthetic. Like you have your favourite high street brands, get to know vintage traders and what they specialise in. Don’t be afraid to ask for advice, they are the experts and can advise on fit, style and after care. “
“I love their style. They have amazing jumpsuits that are all block printed by hand in Jaipur, India. I think that humanitarian elements really speaks to me because that is my background. They produce really awesome, fun clothing. What’s really special about Humphries & Begg is their a young company. Seeing them improve their supply chains while we’ve worked together is so inspiring. They’re now phasing out any conventional cotton and are moving into organic. When we spoke about a year ago, they told us that was their goal. It’s been really amazing to see them actually execute that. It’s all about doing the best you can and continuing to make changes.”
“Elvis & Kresse are so impressive. Kresse Wesling who runs the company is an OBE. They are really interesting because they work ‘problem first, product second’. She found the problem of firehouse waste, then designed her accessories to take it away. The whole design process is completely flipped backwards for them. They now take 100 percent of all firehose waste from the UK, and 50 percent of their profits go back into firefighting charities.”
“Rakha is a really beautiful brand. You’d look at them in a magazine and all you’d think would be, it’s gorgeous. Then you delve deep into the story. The founder, Gözde, is currently getting her Masters from the University of Cambridge in how to better recycle textiles and make a more circular economy. In think it’s a really inspiring brand because it’s all about active learning. It’s not about running with the status quo. They’re always think about how to get better and how to inspire others.”
Straight after recording this week’s podcast episode, Jennifer Ewah shared what she’s learnt from balancing her job as a lawyer, with her ethical jewellery brand Eden Diodati.
“Definitely focus on time management. It’s not fun, but it is important to prioritise the things that you need to do over the things that you want to do, when you have two different jobs.
“That means getting up early and prioritising the paperwork you have to do over the content creation that you want to do. Or doing the stuff that is a little bit more procedural, but needs to be done as a matter of priority.
“I’m awful at that. So much of the brand is such a pleasure for me – being artistic, creating, designing – but I can’t spend all of my time creating and crafting, or bonding and philosophising. Sometimes you need to do really boring stuff. But if it has to be done because it’s essential, get that done first. It’s like delayed gratification.
“Equally important – believe in your own vision. Even if other people don’t. Fashion is often about trends, and that means you’re asked to believe in what other people will find desirable. You need to find what your voice is. If your voice is unique, offer it. And make sure it’s visible. Then you don’t need the trends. You are a trend.
“Often, you need to refuse to take no for an answer. And a refuse to believe that certain things can’t be done. One thing is certain through every up and down: you’ll never regret doing this, because you and your business are about making the world a better place.
Eden Diodati is launching a product based crowdfunding campaign in Autumn 2019. To register your interest for exclusive campaign benefits, visit www.edendiodati.com.