There are many moments in time that give us the opportunity to take stock of what’s around us. From how we live our day to day lives, to how we take care of ourselves, our families and our friends to how we run our businesses. These times are not always positive, but they are always poignant and offer us the chance to listen to that guiding light of intuition. The feeling that allows us to have the courage to make a change, that we know in our hearts is the right one.
I started my label many moons ago and it has gone through ups and downs like any business. But it was always the right fit for me – like something I had to do rather than chose to. I love the creative process of it all – coming up with a single idea that becomes something tangible and beautiful.
Over the years I have never employed anyone in-house, choosing instead to work with agencies, invaluable freelancers from time to time and an accountant. My ever patient boyfriend has also been with me every step of the way and will now have a more permanent role in the day to day running of the business. 2020 has affected everyone in very different ways and we hope to turn this time into something incredibly positive and fulfilling for years to come.
KELLY LOVE has always worked to seasons and predominately been a wholesale brand. The label was sold to shops all over the world and I will be forever grateful for the relationship and opportunities that this has brought over the years. However, as the years unfolded, I could see a shift in the industry, in consumers and in myself.
Before I launched KELLY LOVE, I worked in couture - creating one off pieces that were incredibly special and made the customers feel so beautiful. This gave me an insight into a world of high quality fabrics, handmade craftmanship and beautiful finishings. I chose to take some of this away with me and my pieces still reflect this in some way. The fabrics I use are heavy silk satins and crepes, natural linens, cottons and wools, the prints are hand drawn and exclusive to my collections and the workmanship is of such a high quality. I believe that the inside of the garment should be just as beautiful as the outside and every piece is made with this in mind.
I’ve also, like many of us, become more and more concerned with the impact the fashion industry has on the environment. From the copious amount of clothing that becomes landfill every year to brands and consumers throwing unwanted samples and garments away. From the practice of burning unsold stock that many luxury labels adopt, to the toxic chemicals produced through dying and printing and the high volume of plastic that is used through packaging and storing.
Another common practice within the clothing industry is unethical treatment of workers, from the farmers who grow crops for the fabric to those who work within the factories. This mistreatment is shown through pay well below the minimum wages, working conditions that aren’t hygienic or safe, poorly managed overtime practices and overall mistreatment. There are many sectors of the industry that need to be evaluated and I believe so much of the responsibility lies with the brands themselves. We have a responsibility to the people who make our clothes and to those who buy our clothes.
Which brings me to the very exciting changes that we will be making to the label.
The quality of fabrics and craftmanship will remain the same, we will still be working with an ethical, family run workshop and we will continue to work with sustainable fabric mills. However, everything else will be a little different. With the exception of a few loyal stores selling exclusive items, we will no longer be a wholesale brand. Our pieces will be made to order, meaning we will have no waste. We will also have smaller and larger sizes available online and have the facilities to make small changes to styles that you love.
We will no longer be working to seasons as the idea that our clothing can only be worn for one seasons has never been at the forefront of our brand. We have always designed timeless pieces that can be worn for years to come and the workmanship ensures that these pieces will last. Instead, we will focus on signature pieces and bring out smaller collections and one off styles. The fabric we use for each style is limited to ensure we have no waste, meaning you will own something that very few people in the world own.
As we will be making in a more flexible way, this also ensures that the mills who make our fabrics and the workshops who make our clothes will no longer be working to strict Fashion Week deadlines.
The most exciting change for our customers is that you will now be able to purchase our collections for lower prices as the pieces we sell online will no longer have a shop mark up. We hope however, that you will keep in mind, everything that goes into making a garment. From the designing, the hours of meticulous pattern cutting, the sustainable fabric and the work that goes into make this, cutting the fabric, fastening and trims, sewing each piece, pressing and packaging. There are real people every step of the way who ensure each aspect is completed mindfully and skillfully. We want to create something special that in the end will belong to you. We will do this while paying everyone involved fairly, which is reflected in our pricing.
Finally, we have designed beautiful packaging that you will receive your new clothes in. We have made this recyclable so it can be re-used or disposed of in the most environmentally friendly way.
We aim to be sustainable in every aspect that we can be. We are still learning and we are always open to suggestions via our email firstname.lastname@example.org or our Instagram @kelly_love_com
Thank you for your support, and here’s to many more beautiful pieces of clothing to be made…..