Wes Anderson probably is envious of Emily Adams Bode.
She designs clothes of vintage merit and sports pennants. She has a whitewash network of antique dealers from Paris to Atlanta. She collects small furniture from the 1960's. She can distinguish between the different tribes of the High School Art Girl. ™ ("I was never a happy goth girl, never a fun glitter girl. I was more into preppy vintage fashion," she says, because again: Wes Anderson could never.)
But Bode is not just a certain classification of cool, or even an arbiter of the fashion future in New York, although the 30-year-old with a CFDA award certainly is . But the reason why we're obsessed with her is because besides the buzz, the cool factor and the Moonlight Kingdom vibes, Emily Bode is at the forefront of a new way to shop.
"It starts with the fact that sustainability doesn't mean what you think it means," she sighs. "People like to use that word, but look: sustainability doesn't mean you make new clothes from new materials, even if the fabric is easier for the environment. If you produce too much, you can't sell, guess which, even though they are made from eco-friendly materials, is not sustainable! And maybe you don't even look at the communities you work with in your production, maybe the material is sustainable, but how you treat people or the the way you run your facility is toxic, and I know it's complicated, I know we still have to sell things. & # 39;
To prove this, last year Bode opened a tiny boutique in Chinatown and sold tailor-made and limited pieces in a mix of padded, recycled and natural materials. "We have a large size, over 20 sizes," she says, noting that each garment is unisex. & # 39; And the funny thing is that my mentors and teachers would have been so against it. They would be like: & # 39; You can't open a store until you know your customer! Know what they are! & # 39; But sorry! "She laughs." We make larger and smaller sizes because bigger and smaller people buy our clothes. Because we have an order business, we just have to make what we know what we sell, which is now pants. We have no idea what people would be like so in our pants, "which is basically the Dazed and confused film flames in fabrics ranging from denim from the 70's to Japanese silk.
But what happens when a sustainable attire wins fashion awards, counts Insta-Fame, lands on magazine pages and suddenly has to buy fabric? "We are still making a lot of vintage purchases from all over the world," Bode says, "but we really trust Woolmark. They have opened the doors to the best woolen suppliers in the world, with whom they would not talk before." she laughs. & # 39; They let me make replicas of my vintage fabric pieces and still feel like it's part of our mission. & # 39;
"So much of the brand is for me to create heritage clothing and preserve this history and techniques that would otherwise be lost forever," she says. "With Woolmark, we can work with these smaller mills that have traceable and certified sustainable yarns. To have a clear picture of where your materials come from and transparency about them, what they sustainable. "
This week, Emily is competing for the prestigious Woolmark Prize that offers even more funding and support for the designer if she were to win (such as Karl Lagerfeld and Yves Saint Laurent, who are just two of the many success stories from the international competition). with these legendary designers, she doesn't feel the same rivalry with her peer, including fellow American cool head Matthew Adams Dolan.)
& # 39; Fashion likes to compete with people, & # 39; she says. "It's just part of the industry, it's part of the way they do design schools … but I refuse to believe that my peers, and the people around me that I love and respect, & # 39; competition & # 39; you know? " She laughs. & # 39; I think of it as & # 39; you are competing for one thing. You don't compete in life. & # 39; We and these other designers are not very similar. & # 39;
And for Emily Bode, that's exactly the point.