MSU seniors create sustainable and versatile clothing line
EAST LANSING, Mich. (WILX) - We can all agree that we want to maximize space in our closets.
Now, there is a Michigan clothing company that does that - while remaining eco-friendly.
The best part- is that it was started by two Michigan State seniors!
MSU students have a lot on their plate between their studies, internships, changing restrictions - all amid a pandemic.
But for MSU Seniors Jackie and Olivia, they are doing all of that while running their own apparel company.
“I just think that it really doesn’t matter what age you are, you can accomplish anything,” said Jackie Smythe, a senior and co-founder of Infknit.
You can say that again - the two have started Infknit Apparel. It’s a company that specializes in versatile apparel for the conscious consumer.
“We create products that are completely reversible and built with functional features intended to maximize consumer wear and minimize the amount of waste that’s going into the clothes you’re purchasing,” explained Jackie. “So essentially, what we’re trying to do is increase the number of times a consumer can wear a product before they’re throwing it away because most people only wear something about seven times before they tossed in the trash. So that’s why we create products that are versatile - that way we can further minimize waste and help fight fast fashion.”
This company that continues to see success, believe it or not started, started from a homework assignment.
“We were studying abroad in Costa Rica and we presented this final business project to our professors and they were like, is this a real thing? And they were like, ‘you should join the Hatch and Student incubator program at MSU,” said Olivia Miller, co-founder of Infknit. “So we’ve been in that program and have had really good experience with it.”
Since then, they have teamed up with a manufacturer in Detroit who was actually apart of the same program.
“He was a product success story of this hatch program, so we really have seen the whole program grow full circle now that we’re working with him, and it’s a great relationship,” said Olivia.
Not only is the clothing fashionable street wear, but versatile and reversible.
“So we’re both wearing our back to back long sleeve right now and as I mentioned, everything’s reversible. So mine reverses into a green side, and Olivia’s reverses into a tan. Then we also have our number one dress. We first started on Kickstarter back in 2019 with our number one dress, so it’s completely reversible. You can see there’s the purple side here and the black side. There are two necklines and then there’s also these loops going up the side of the dress that allow you to alter the length.”
Their Number One Dress was even featured in British Vogue.
“We have feature in British Vogue in the December, November and January issues of 2020 and then January 2021. We were like, Is this real?”
Jackie and Olivia are currently working on ways for their sustainable clothes to sustain the pandemic.
“We saw things change a little bit with what consumers were buying, so we started doing more comfort wear, and we did another color of our long sleeve. Then we also added masks and beanies. Yeah. We also have a bunch of other products that we’ve been working on for the summer and fall as well. So after everything kind of shifted a little bit, we’ve also shifted our strategy to do a little bit more wholesaling and to have more of a presence in retail, as well.”
The two are preparing to graduate this December.
They hope their business can not only inspire students, but their customers as well.
“It’s not even necessarily about creating something, it’s also learning along the way, and what you gain from that as a person. So even if things don’t go as well as you want them to, you still have all that knowledge and experience. That’s why I really think that everybody should start a business because you’re putting yourself in every role, and you get to learn and decide what you think you want to do,” said Jackie.
“Every small change is like a positive way, even if it’s a small little change, but it’s like all those can add up to like a bigger impact, added Olivia.
To check out Infknit appearl: https://www.infknit.com/
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