REBRANDED transforms factory-rejects into cool streetwear
REBRANDED is a new sustainable clothing line out of Los Angeles. Launched in February 2022, REBRANDED wants to revolutionize the way we view fashion. Inhabitat sat down with founder and CEO Tricia Hoke to discuss what inspired this new fashion line of discarded materials.
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“Every day, thousands of products go to waste at the factory level due to error and imperfection,” the brand states. “These items are typically discarded, causing waste and harm to the environment. REBRANDED takes these “unwanted” and “unworthy” items, using the materials to create new, reinvented, rebranded pieces of clothing.”
Inspired by culture, music and artists, REBRANDED offers unique streetwear style. We asked Hoke what led her to launch this new brand in the busy fashion landscape.
Tell us a little bit about the backstory on REBRANDED and what your mission is with this line.
Hoke: Sustainability and streetwear typically do not play together, but with REBRANDED, we take the angst and the magic of streetwear culture and cross-pollinate it with social responsibility and environmental concern.
We “rescue” abandoned clothing production lots and rejected products — saving them from the landfill, fast-fashion outlet retailers, and even from burning alive — paying the factories fair value in the process. We re-imagine, re-invent, and re-brand these garments into designer goods, often employing more people at a fair wage, and offer our customers limited edition “drops” on products that otherwise may have been left for dead.
What makes REBRANDED sustainable?
Hoke: Brands hire factories (often overseas) to produce their garments, and somewhere during that process … sometimes … things go awry. Brands have to have quality standards. If their garments do not fit right, or the colors do not match what’s in stock already for instance, then they have to reject the goods.
The sad part about this is that the factories have usually finished sewing and packing the garments. So when the brand rightfully (or not so rightfully) rejects the products, it’s the workers who suffer. In some cases, the factories can not pay the sewing teams and may even have to shut down.
In most of these cases, the brand does not allow the factory to sell the goods. (Rightfully so, no brand wants a poor quality product with their name on it hitting the street.) So these items get dumped into the garbage, abandoned at the port, and sometimes even burned.
This is where we come in. The brand or the factory will request us to “rescue” their rejected production. We then will assess the issue(s) and then will make a plan to create a more awesome product in its place.
Say it’s a t-shirt with the wrong label (oops). If it’s a bomb shirt, we may just relabel it, print on it, or dye it a new color; the opportunities are endless.
Say it’s something more complicated like a trench coat where the fit was off? Well in this case we will use as much of the product as we can, and we turn the “problems” into a design challenge, aiming to create a beautiful limited edition fashion piece.
What are your favorite pieces from the current line, and why?
Hoke: From our current line, I think my favorite pieces are the Kintsugi tee. We love the idea of something broken and cracked getting put back together with literal gold, making it much more valuable than it was in the first place.
It speaks to the underdog in all of us. Every time you have been broken, what did you do? You came back better and stronger than before. All of our products tell the “origin” story on their labels, and we even have more “back story” information that you can access from the tag on the inside.
The print on the side of this shirt says, “I WAS DEEMED UNWORTHY.” There is an angsty beauty about it. That’s life, you know. All the ups and downs. Sometimes you have to get a little pissed off and let people know they made a mistake misjudging you.