An Experiment in Fashion

Guest written by Laura Tanzer for Local First Arizona.

It started as an experiment.

I had not made clothes in over a decade, while I was working on my PhD at UA studying climate change in the School of Natural Resources. But that creative spark wasn't satisfied with just using my brain.

I needed to a MAKE something.

I was in the Greater Tucson Leadership program, which inspired me to take a leap. So, I made a wearable art duster and brought it to the next GTL meeting for some feedback. The response was overwhelmingly positive! I still had the talent.

I expanded the experiment, entered a few fashion shows, and then won designer of the year at Phoenix Fashion Week in 2016. That year I opened my atelier on Toole avenue. 

The rest, they say, is history.

It has not been easy owning a business, especially a fashion design house, and more especially in Tucson. It would have been easier in NYC or LA or one of the other fashion-happy capitols in the world. However, I love living here, and I figured with global commerce and internet, I could make a go of it. 

So, to make Tucson HQ work, I travel to other places to do trade shows to gain wholesale accounts, and art shows to gain retail clients.  I am slowly building a national following. And, I am a bit stubborn. I think a less stubborn person would have given up by now.

And of course at this point,

 I cannot think of doing anything else with my life.