I clearly have a penchant for comfortable clothing that works with my lifestyle (read: crawling on the floor wiping up crumbs/typing alone on my computer/but also wanting to look good) so when I was in Lowell’s the other day I knew that when I spotted a pair of Skinny Sweats Trouser Sweats they were a winner.
Designed and manufactured in Toronto, these pants also fulfil my attempts to buy carefully only things I love made in a loving way.
Designed by Adrienne Butikofer (shown below in the sweatshirt) she designs the line as a way of balancing being a mom of two. Her biography is quite sweet. Reading her blog it’s clear that she wants her clothes to be respected, cherished and timeless. Her blog also explains her costs and why locally made clothing is so expensive. I hear you Adrienne! For any of you wondering what costs make up locally made clothing I encourage you to read her post here. I especially like the last paragraph.
Adrienne was kind enough to answer a few questions about herself and the brand.
As a mother of two what does it mean for you to have your own business?
It can be really overwhelming- but I think that’s true for all Mom’s at some point. While working from home makes me available all the time, I’m also always surrounded by so much that needs to be done- work, household chores, and the part of me that just wants to spend time and be present for my daughters. I think I carry a lot of anxiety about what isn’t getting done (lots!) or what needs more attention (everything!) but I’m optimistic that I will eventually find balance or a rhythm that makes sense. I am really lucky to have a wonderful husband who is an amazing dad and an equal crusader to maintaining a happy, healthy home. When I go through periods of needing to put in 16 hour work days he always steps up and runs the show.
Did growing up in the prairies have any influence?
As a girl I was enraptured with the idea of pioneer women, and that early Canadian settler life is easier to imagine on the prairies. It influenced me to want to learn to sew at an early age. Style wise, I was a pretty wild and free teenager, my style was never contrived and my wardrobe was a passion project. I think Winnipeg still has it’s own thing going on. People are not afraid of weird fashion, but it’s not worn ironically. They’re wearing weird stuff because they like it, and it’s fun.
What is your hope for the future of fashion?
I want it to slow down. I’d love to be able to put more time and effort into the art that I make- which happens to be fashion. But unfortunately there is a huge emphasis on cheap in our culture, and selling what I make is part of the equation. I hope people develop a more thoughtful approach to what they buy. My own shopping habits have been at an almost standstill the past few years. I’m lucky that I make clothes so I’m still satisfying that need for new every so often but I decided a while ago that I was done with buying fast fashion crap, and that I only wanted to buy handmade or high quality [more expensive] things. I can’t really afford any of that, so I just buy nothing. I’ve picked up a couple key things a year that I will probably wear the shit out of because they will last, and they were thought out purchases. On the other hand- fashion is fun, fashion makes people happy and I hope it gets treated with more reverence than it’s getting now. From the heart frivolousness is part of what makes fashion exciting and great.
Thanks Adrienne for all of your time and help! Also readers, keep your eyes peeled because Adrienne’s hoping to come out with another line of elegant basics that can be worn with the Skinny Sweats line perhaps even as early as this spring.
Adrienne Butikofer Etsy Store (there’s a few more things from her than shown on her Skinny Sweats website)
Please note that the above items were pulled from both her Etsy store and the Skinny Sweats clothing line.
ps Some hideous pics of me in my Skinny Sweats. I am not a master of the selfie.