Launching a Sustainable Fashion Company
Hear from Micki, the founder of PETAL + ASH.
Let's talk about circularity! The @ellenmacarthurfoundation states "A circular economy is based on…
Addressing the negative effects of fast fashion is important for our present and future. At Feminine Digest, we support creators who are focused on social responsibility. We wanted to share a short interview we conducted with Micki Weiner, a budding entrepreneur in the slow fashion space.
Please tell me about your passions and about PETAL + ASH.
I’ve spent most of my life as a professional dancer, and for the last six years I was on tour with the Phantom of the Opera. While on tour, I saw a lot of the country — and saw a lot of the ways different cities and states functioned. I loved how sustainably forward the west coast was, but at heart I’ve always been a New Yorker! I’ve also always been an environmentalist, and over the past ten years I’ve become more and more passionate about the cause. I don’t have a formal fashion background, but as a side hustle I started dying baby onesies and scarves — which led me into the world of natural dyes. As I got deeper into natural dyes, I started to dream about ways I could combine my creative passions into something tangible that could help make a difference and help change the narrative of what it means to be ethical and sustainable. I love bras, and some brainstorming and research led me to realize that there was this gap between sustainable options, which are mostly basics, and more feminine options, that are beautiful but largely unsustainable. That’s how the idea for Petal + Ash, an ethical and sustainable lingerie brand, was born.
I love that your brand focuses on being ethical, sustainable, and natural. Is there anything you want to highlight?
I keep saying that we can’t stop people from consuming, so we have to change how and what they consume. Nobody is going to buy a bra just because it’s sustainable. People still want comfort, a good fit, and to feel sexy. My hope is that Petal + Ash can deliver on these fronts, and show the world that sustainability can be fun and sexy. It’s not a “this or that” conversation; you can totally have both!
You are set to launch in 2021. What are the things you are focusing on?
Working to launch a brand in the time of Covid certainly is interesting. In some ways, there are a lot of challenges with everything going online. But in other ways, the current remote live/work situation can also be used to our advantage. So I’m focused on how to best move forward in this new normal, for both myself and the brand. Right now the main focus is on product development, so I can bring my vision to life in the best way possible. That, and building a brand following!
What advice do you have to any female entrepreneurs that are wanting to get started with a project of their own?
Don’t wait for anyone to give you permission. If in your gut you know you’ve got a great idea, then be bold and go for it. Do tons of research and be prepared for a lot of ups and downs. And most importantly, pace yourself so that you can stay focused and motivated, without getting burned out. I’m always amazed at how the ideas flow, after taking a solid day off!
Please feel free to share anything else.
You can head to www.petalandash.com to sign up for email exclusive updates and be the first to know when we launch. You can also follow us on Instagram (@petalandash).