At the heart of our work, we make people look good and do good in the world.
The business I co-founded, Retrofit Republic, is a styling firm and vintage retailer with a social impact. We specialize in vintage and recycled clothing and offer styling to individuals, changemakers, and brands.
Our vision is to change the belief that fashion and social justice are mutually exclusive.
As a values-driven, women-owned business, we’re committed to impeccable style, sustainability efforts, and initiatives that benefit low-income populations, communities of color, and our LGBTQ family.
Hard to believe now, but it started with a yard sale in 2009.
My close friend and I were moving to San Francisco and when we found our centrally located San Francisco home, we quickly realized we had too much space and not nearly enough space. Being resourceful immigrant daughters, we hosted a yard sale. And, surprisingly, of all the things that we were selling, there was a shocking response and demand for our unwanted clothing.
People asked us if we had owned clothing stores (nope- just a penchant for good shopping, we said), if we would host repeat sales, if they could hop on an email list, and these questions really encouraged us to think a little bigger. And the rest, as they say, is history.
Being a small business owner means you get to wear all the hats of your enterprise. I joke that not only are Jenny and I the co-founders and the executive stylists, we’re also the interns, the caterers, the pickup crew, the steamers, and the receptionist. There’s nothing that we can’t do ourselves and I think it makes us stronger business women.
Being my own boss. The ability to think of projects and run with them—without anyone telling me what I can and cannot do—has been one of the most liberating experiences of my adult life. And to work in a creative industry while promoting our strong, progressive values is also a huge perk to what we do.
Make it happen. Lean on the community around you and always remember to give back.
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