For Trusted clothes, I had the honor to interview a funky fashion brand whose aim is to combine music and chic fashion ethically. They opened up to me with the following questions sharing their motivations for starting Crepe Records.
Music has a long history in liberation of groups of people, and musicians are seen as critical voices in society for this, as a DJ and a Designer how did you find the courage to share the message of ethical fashion?
At the moment ethical fashion is not very accessible to people, because fast fashion dominates the high street to meet the demands of the industry. I wanted to bring awareness to the fact that people have a choice now to buy well-made, stylish, long-lasting clothing that has been made ethically. We designed our first collection to be music inspired, fun and affordable, breaking the stereotypes of ethical fashion being boring and beige and too expensive. From a Designer and DJ perspective, both roles aim to generate a movement. It’s about communicating a message; whether that is a new sustainable fabric, an undiscovered artist, or simply a catchy beat that you want people to listen to. I amalgamate these skills to show consumers that they have a choice to buy ethically and from independent retailers and by doing so I think we can change the perception of fashion.
Crepe Records brand encourages individuals need for expression in an ethical manner in the music industry, why is this so important to you?
The Music industry can be a very ruthless place. A lot of artists end up having to conform to looking a certain way and playing a certain role to sell records, especially young women. Our designs are about being true to who you are, by looking good and feeling good about what you are wearing. It’s about building your own style, being confident and connecting to people positively through music. I designed our womens’ collection to specifically offer fitted designs that were more flattering to the female form. This was because I wasn’t able to find t-shirts that fitted well and said something about my lifestyle-so I created a collection to fit this niche in the market. Each tee has been designed by myself and tested by people we know, to ensure it’s comfortable, shapely and stylish.
The suppliers you use have a lot of compliance certifications, what was the journey like in discovering these and how do they ensure the products are ethically made?
Finding suppliers that we wanted to work with took a lot of background work initially as we’re very picky! We secured these suppliers even before the design process started. We were keen to find like-minded companies that had similar ethical values as we do. We did a lot of research into potential suppliers and contacted them to ask pertinent questions about where their materials were from and where their products were made, as well as reading recent independent audits on these companies. We wanted our supply chain to be as transparent as possible and we include information of where the fabric is from and where it’s made on each of our care labels. We support the Fairwear Foundation, Ethical Manufacturers and Justice for Workers, and the Clean Cotton Campaign to name but a few and it’s great to know that the suppliers we have selected are continuously working to further reduce elements like carbon footprint and water usage, so we’re proud to be working with them.
This will be your second appearance at the Forest Hill Fashion week, what drives Crepe records to be involved in community Initiatives?
As we’re based locally in Forest Hill and some of our garments are actually printed locally, we feel it’s really important to help the community as much as possible. Forest Hill Fashion Week has been running for several years now and coincides with London Fashion Week. It does a great job of showcasing local designers and their collections, and celebrates creativity in the community by running workshops and fairs for everyone to get involved. It also provides opportunities for independent small businesses to trade at the event. This year I’m the music director for the catwalk show and will be playing a special DJ set too to warm up the crowd before the show begins. We will also be trading on the day and launching a special recycling initiative where people can bring their old t-shirts to us to recycle and in return we’re offering a discount on our range.
Crepe Records infuses inspiration of music, light hearted fun, and a clear conscious. Why do you think it’s great to provide consumers with an energetic option of clothing?
The best way to tell a story is by making it fun and the aim of our debut collection was to do just that! We never get tired of seeing the reactions on our customers’ faces when they first see our clothing- it so positive and brings a smile to their faces, they laugh and pull their friends over to show them and engage their reaction as well. We wanted to bottle that positive energy up and incorporate it into the designs of our first collection, which we hope is apparent.
What’s one thing you would like consumers to know about the founders of Crepe Records?
We’re perfectionists! We care tremendously about what we have designed and have really thought about how we can make the online experience of shopping with us a delightful one. For example, we spent time designing a bespoke letterbox friendly package so that our customers have their garments waiting for them when they get home (I spent a lot of time sending empty prototype boxes to my own address, just to make sure it worked correctly!) We also offer free shipping worldwide. We want people to choose our brand, because they want to say something positive and fun about themselves. Music and fashion are our passions and we are just as excited about sharing new music from across the globe as we are about making our clothing that is good for the people who make it as well as the people who buy it.
For more information on this awesome brand go to crepe records!
About the Author
Natasha Taneka is a London based consultant with an MA in political theory and human security, and a background in Purchasing and supply chains. While she primarily works in the business world, contracted by major international corporations, she maintains a keen interest in all things fashionable and questions of sustainability. You can read her blog ‘Ain’t seen nothing yet’ at www.maonei.org