Megan Rose, Designer
REVIVAL: Upcycled Style
Esty Website: REVIVALmens
Facebook: Revival Clothing
How many years experience in the industry?
How did you manage to launch your own fashion line?
My main focus when I moved to the bay area was environmentalism, but, while living in an expensive metropolitan area, if you only focus on ideals you’ll find yourself making coffee for a looooooong time. So, I started doing small, easy, seamstress gigs, like making bibs….for adults. Over the years, my environmentalism and sewing talent reached a head with a job offer for lead seamstress on a pilot project from Goodwill, which was upcycling Goodwill clothing. It flopped. However, it gave me the confidence that I could make upcycled clothing on my own and has thus been my focus for the last 4 years.
What is your philosophy of design?
Design is a combination of artistry and functionality, so a good design will have a solid artistic vision with a practical application. Some of my favorite design concepts are water-purifying sculptures. I’m making clothes to bring art back to fashion and away from cheap overseas manufacturing. A great looking shirt makes you feel good, straightens your posture, and helps you shine
Tell me about your collection. What makes your line (and/or retail store) stand out from the crowd?
The US is filled to the brim with overseas manufacturing that’s made as quickly and cheaply as possible by an overworked, underpaid human that deserves more from life, and I find the fashion of today looking very cheap and uninteresting. In order to bring my designs to this market I adhere to 3 PRINCIPLES:
RECYCLE–To cut down on waste I use thrift store shirts, kick downs, and rejects. Then I deconstruct them, design, and reconstruct them into a striking new piece with VERY little waste.
QUALITY–Each piece receives a unique design quality, even if that means having to take in the sides or adjust the collar, and is reconstructed to fit like a brand new, high fashion piece that’s machine washable and lasts for years.
UNIQUE–No two pieces are alike, so when you find the shirt that’s right for you, you will know it’s the only one of its kind and fits like a charm, so you will always look good and be proud of the awesome score!
Also, everything is made on Maui, and I employ my community to help with production, and also lend their creative ideas into the process.
Where do you draw your style inspiration from? Who is your favorite style icon?
I draw my inspiration from festivals, mostly. The art, color, music, and delight from having fun and being free. As far as style icon….Ganesh, I guess.
What are the current trends in your industry?
Fashion forecasting is a class you can take in fashion school. For my design philosophy, fashion is about getting closer and closer to an artistic vision in design and reaching out thru social media to find the like-minded folks that resonate with that vision and add it to their wardrobe.
What is your favorite piece from your collection?
Probably the Molotov cocktail laser cut tie. I made it years ago when I lived in Oakland, and it was a big hit. In Maui folks rarely wear shoes, let alone ties, and in general are not into violent uprisings.
What shapes and styles are found in your clothing designs?
Lately its been keys, bulls, and phoenix shapes, but these change periodically from season to season. The muse comes in many forms, and sometimes one symbol has more focus than the other. As a designer/artist, being fascinated with one image is usually a reflection of your environment.
Please tell me about the textiles you use in your designs. Any specific fabrics and colors that you love to work with?
I like to work with woven materials, because it tailors nicely has a higher quality than jersey/stretch, which is really important when you’re working with used materials. If I can get my hands on them, I like silk brocade and embroidered upholstery.
Do your designs feature upcycled textiles? Tell me about how you obtain them and your process.
As an environmentalist I only work in recycled fashion, even for custom designs. I find the pieces mostly at thrift stores, sometimes I’ll have friends shop in major cities they live in and have them shipped over to me. It’s pretty cost effective, actually, and I make my price points accordingly. I don’t always work with just clothes, if it’s a big project I’ll use a duvet cover or curtains. The biggest problem is not being able to do a line run of the same look over and over, which is a challenge every time someone wants a piece that doesn’t fit, but the fits are surprisingly universal. The best approach is to get a custom piece based on the design elements you see from REVIVAL for total satisfaction.
What clothing/accessory lines do you carry in your store?
If we took a peek in your closet, what would we see? What is your ‘can’t live without’ item?
I don’t have a closet. Clothes come and go and easily and fluidly as I do, and are relative to where I live, where I’m going, and how good my thighs look.
What is the staple clothing item or accessory every woman on Maui should be sure to have?
Every woman should have one dress she doesn’t have to wear a bra with.
Tell me your top 5 styling tips.
1. look good
2. feel good
3. good posture
4. Have amazing hair
Biggest fashion no-nos?
Don’t just buy something because it’s “trendy’ or around or in the magazines. Our emotions and our visual perception are connected on the same sides of the brain, so “style” is directly related to how we feel when we wear something. The focus on shopping should reflect your state of mind. Just cuz skinny jeans are “in” doesn’t mean you’re gonna feel good wearing them. Chances are you feel awkward and fat. Wear the jeans that make you feel sexy, or tall, or in control, or whatever makes you feel GOOD!