By Jessica Kelly, Founder & CEO, THR3EFOLD
I won't lie, one of my favorite things about living in New York City is the constant rubbing of elbows with creative go-getters looking to make their mark on the world. There's always a store or restaurant opening, brand launch, or interesting panel to attend. The hard part is making space in your calendar to attend them all. Last Friday, I got to meet our newest brand members, Finn and Tasha, the founders of the newly launched brand Requin at their SS19 presentation in the Financial District. Here's my interview with Co-Founder and Designer, Finn.
What is your background?
I started my life a professional dancer. I danced professionally in Europe and here in the US until I was about 30, after that I toured with a few bands making a living as a backup singer. It was great but eventually I had to pick a more profitable career. Inspired by my seamstress grandmother who taught me to sew, I got my Applied Science Degree in Fashion in Seattle with a focus on technical outerwear.
Fast forward, and I’ve worked for J.Crew, Ann Taylor, Banana Republic, American Eagle, Ralph Lauren and Splendid. I’ve done Swim, Sleep, Lounge, Suiting, Wovens, Knits, Mens, Womens, Outerwear and Activewear. My wife, and business partner, is head of interactive production at Droga5, and she’s produced everything from pizza ordering sneakers for Pizza Hut, pop up cafes in remote caves & cellular deadzones, twenty feet tall 3D printed action figures for a major console game and athlete lounges at three Olympic Games. But, the two of us have always loved working on projects together so combining our shared love of fashion and talents naturally led to Requin.
We design for working city women who value style and comfort. At our launch party a C-Suite level executive of a top ad agency in NYC pre-ordered our hero maxi as did a 20 year old assistant. It's for everyone. In fact, we’re ecstatic that both guys and gals pre-ordered our indigo jumpsuit and are embracing the line.
Why did you start the brand?
I love fashion and design, but since I became a designer later in my career, it didn’t take long for me to get over the shiny names I was working for and find the courage to design on my own terms. Requin was born from a blend of my wife and I's design aesthetic and lifestyle. The basic idea for the line is that it’s a small capsule of transitional, stylish, and comfortable items that can take you anywhere from dinner to the beach.
My background was in the lounge/sleep/swim categories, and we combined the best romantic ideas of voile tops in that category with edgier surf shop tees, small neon pops and some unisex structured indigo to round out our first warm weather season. We wanted to create pieces that made everyone feel good, were comfortable and things they would love for a long time.
Price point was also important - what’s the use in creating amazing pieces if no one could afford them? With that in mind, we worked hard to keep prices in our line to range from $40 to $240 without sacrificing fabric quality. So hopefully there is something for everyone.
What do you hope to achieve with Requin?
We want people to see Requin as a brand that creates little staples that they invest in and keep. You know that dress or jumpsuit in your closet that you pull out when you want to feel amazing and you’ve had it for so long that it’s become part of your identity? We want to make that for you.
Invest in clothing that will make you happy. Don’t ever buy a piece of clothing that doesn’t bring you joy or make you feel good and more you. Never be a fish, be a shark.
You can follow Requin on Instagram @requinnyc or connect with them directly by joining Deadstock District. Learn from them the ins and outs of the industry, and navigating the emerging fashion brand world verses corporate fashion. Together we can build a better industry for people, planet, and profit.