Musician and model, VV Brown's transition to the world of fashion seems like a fluid and natural journey and perhaps even expected of musicians these days. But unlike many of her peers, VV's venture into fashion has been woven with values that reveal the brand as one that is compassionate, thoughtful and innovative.
VV Vintage, the singer's recently launched e-commerce site aspires to bring its customers exclusive and bespoke fashion pieces that have been created with sustainability, recycling and up-cycling at the very core of the enterprise. Furthermore, the brand has collaborated with the charity Oxfam in presenting DWO - the Design With Oxfam program, a pursuit that encourages and allows designers to up-cycle second hand clothes, with the freedom to use their creativity to the fullest and sell them via the online store. Ten percent of all DWO profits go to Oxfam.
Intrigued by her new endevours, I was eager to learn more about VV Brown's insights on vintage, sustainability and her plans for the near future.
In Conversation with VV Brown
I personally wouldn't describe the fashion offered at VV Vintage as Vintage. How would you define vintage and why do you believe the clothes at VVV deserve the 'Vintage' identity?
It's our aim to spread the word about sustainability and the recycling of materials. There is a great feeling and power in reinvention and through the process of innovation and design we can take clothes and materials and turn them into something else.
The Vintage identity comes from something old and made new. However our preference in pieces is all encompassed in an ethos that we don't just want to be your average vintage store we want to be a place where you can buy items that feel forward and special.
Sustainability is such an easy way to contribute to the environment. This is where our identity lies. We want to shift the "mumsy" feel sustainability has and bring into the future.
What inspired your interest in sustainability and your desire to be productive in making a difference?
I think reading a lot of books about waste and landfill opened my eyes. The statistics are unreal and as you dive in deeper you cant help but want to change your habits. We are so wasteful here in the west and when you look at the facts it makes you feel like your not doing enough. VVV is my little contribution and we hope we can spread the message.
Oxfam is an excellent charity. Can you tell me why you chose to work with them in particular?
Oxfam does a lot all over the world and are very hands on with helping people. I have seen them make such a difference and it just felt right, as they are a charity that deals with fabrics and the recycling of fabrics. It made sense.
How would you describe the VV Vintage woman?
Forward, chic, a thinker, fashionable, ethical, graphic, strong, simple, revolutionary.
What makes the VVV vintage shopping experience different (and better) than shopping with other online retail sites?
"Shop and feel good about it" is our motto. We believe that you can invest your money into something that not only looks good, but has a good effect on other things; a platform for young designers, charity, recycling of materials and forward design. Everyone wins.
What's next for you? Do you have any other projects on the go?
VVV is my main project and a second album, which comes out next year.
VVV has taken over my life and when I wake up in the morning it's such an amazing feeling to own your own business. No one is telling you what to do or where to be. You are in charge. It's such a great feeling to be apart of a collective where people want to make a difference and I am learning every day. We hope to continue with our VVVTV where we interview up and coming designers, architects and musicians and we are in talks with buyers for our new sustainable collection in hope of a September runway show. We have our fingers crossed. We are currently in ASOS as well which is very exciting!
Why is it important, do you think, for us to live sustainable lifestyles and what advice would you give to those who want to make the transition to a sustainable lifestyle?
The recycling of materials effects the environment, the standards of living in other countries where workers slave away in factories that are not governed properly. The idea stops waste and creates a community spirit. There are so many socio-economic reasons that benefit our world. We support each other in a social cycle that allows us to respect life, the environment and the working man. The transition takes time, I'm learning every day but I think it's all about doing the little things and making sure we always remember that it's not all about the "self" but about the self in conjunction to someone else. The greatest of all things is to give and to recognise the strength in empathy and the question of humanity in everything we do.
Many thanks to VV Brown for sharing her thoughts with me on fashion and sustainability.
Visit VV Vintage at www.vvvintage.com
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