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“The detour”

I have been waiting for the right moment to kick off this Journal and with the Summer Holidays coming up – I thought – this is it! Hopefully you will have time to enjoy a bit of reading over the summer.

In this journal, I will share with you my work and thoughts, facts about sustainable fashion, studio life and much more. I will also add little pieces of inspiration and interviews with other designers and small business owners as we go along. But first, I will tell you about my “detour”.

People often ask me how I got started. So, this post will be all about me, myself and Weasel Wardrobe – from the beginning.

I graduated from TEKO as a Fashion Designer back in 2006 and I have been working in different aspects of fashion since.

I started out in Menswear and loved every minute of it. Travelling, trendspotting, designing, styling and I “grew up” as a designer. I did mostly knitwear and a lot of print-design.

Back then, everything was Fast Fashion, huge collections – and many of them every year. I designed hundreds and hundreds of garments and somewhere down the line, I began to feel the need to do something else. To take a detour.

I jumped the boat and began studying “Environmental Technology” in Aarhus, thinking I would try to clean up some of the mess the fashion industry has left, and is still leaving, behind.

During my studies, I learned the bad facts and spent my final year mapping all the environmental impacts of the fashion industry. It really is a dirty business on so many levels. After that, there was no going back for me.

When I graduated from EAAA, I knew I wanted a small brand of my own. A simple set up – far from what I used to work with.

Somewhere in between, my daughter was born and I became aware of how ridiculously many clothes babies grow out of in no time.

I began looking into the different size charts and found that there was really no need for all these size steps. The only reason to keep the regular size chart would be to sell more products. Not a very sustainable approach.

I figured there had to be a better way to do this. I started making patterns and trying out different shapes and sizes until I finally found the fit I was looking for. A design that would be able to grow with the baby and fit across three regular size steps.

I founded Weasel Wardrobe in 2016. I bought a few basic machines and a pile of fabrics and started stitching.

At first, I wanted to see if there was any interest in my designs. I thought, “if it’s a success, I will find a manufacturer to handle production”.

Then I learned how much I enjoyed the process. How simple it was. How little I had to rely others to keep their word, to keep deadlines and so on. It is not as easy as it sounds to have a manufacturer handle production. Especilly not as a small business owner with very little to offer. I leaned that during my years in menswear.

Now 5 years later, I am still stitching and printing every single piece. It has become a big part of Weasel Wardrobe and it makes more sense than I ever thought it would. I will tell you much more about the Slow Fashion aspects and its many advantages in another post soon.

“The detour” turned into a small company and a whole new way of life. Of course, I had many doubts, ups and downs along the road, but this is the short version of how I got started.

I am excited to see what the future will bring and have my fingers crossed that Slow Fashion will be a bigger part of “the industry” in the years to come. I sure will do my bit to make it happen.

If you want to know more and follow our journey, you are more than welcome to join our daily life on instagram @weaselwardobe . Otherwise, stay tuned for more journal updates.

Have a great summer!

All the best

Karen-Louise Wenzel