Hey Girl Hey!!
I hope you have all your financial affairs in order because you will be shopping til you drop year at the TCFStyle Expo! Seriously some big things are happening right now. The 2018 TCFStyle Expo is less than two weeks away, and I still have more vendor news to share!
Today, we are putting the spotlight on a brand that has stolen my heart and pretty soon, my bank account. It’s an honor to welcome the 2018 TCFStyle Expo the all size brand, Barkwood Clothing!
You got to meet Barkwood Clothing!
How many years in business?
What type of business?
Apparel / Accessories
What is the story behind your brand?
Barkwood came from my frustration with loving clothes and feeling like clothes have not loved me over the years. My love for clothes and passion brought me to LA where I studied fashion and worked in the industry to learn why clothes do not fit and engineered a better product. Barkwood is exclusively inclusive. There is a piece of Barkwood in every woman, and there is a piece of every woman in Barkwood. Barkwood aims to fill the hole left by high-end contemporary brands that have basically said clothes are only for a small percentage of people that have unrealistic body goals. We want to eat that stereotype up like biscuits and gravy on a Sunday.
Why this focus?
This focus is very important for the progression of our society mentally, physically and economically. We all really need to open up our minds in a lot of ways, how we interpret fashion is just one. However, Barkwood can be the focus and platform that can help open the door to a lot of other issues (black business ownership, poor corporate conditions, getting people to vote for Senate, etc.)
What inspired you to get into fashion?
I have always LOVED clothes but did not think it was a realistic career option as a young black woman from Maryland. When I went to Spelman and got involved with the fashion show world at the AUC, I was hooked. After I had my first fashion expo at a vintage consignment shop I worked for, I decided then and there that I was going to set out and be a black designer and start a clothing line and prove that WE could do it. The Barkwood story began writing itself after that.
Are you self-taught/passion driven or did you go to school for this?
I have a B.A. in Economics from Spelman College and an A.A. in Fashion Design from Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising. I also worked in the industry as a pattern maker for three years after graduating (I make all of the patterns for Barkwood Clothing)
What or Who is your style/design inspiration?
I am very inspired by vintage items and strong women (Tracee Ellis Ross, Michelle Obama, Angela Rye). I love the idea of things looking a bit used, implying they have been through something and lasted.
What has been the biggest success of your brand, to date?
Being better able to understand our customer every day.
What would be one of the biggest style myths in Plus Size or Big & Tall Fashion?
To stay away from prints
How do you think the plus size industry has grown over the years?
Brands have realized there is a market there, so there are beginning to be more options available. However, keep in mind a lot of them just want to make a profit and have not really considered fit, they are just grading their patterns up from a size 2. Barkwood prides itself on its genuity as we spend a lot of time developing our fit. We develop on a size 8 and a size 24 and grade out.
Have you attended or So that at the expo before? If not, tell us your past experiences, if so, let us know what you are looking forward to!
What can the attendees of the TCFStyle Expo look forward to seeing from you?
A brand that is not JUST for “plus.” We hope to offer a bridge from the “regular” market to the “plus” market. We believe it’s all one market.
Just so you know, I will be the one hovering over their booth.
To see more from Barwood Clothing check them out online at Barkwoodclothing.com. Or you can just come to the expo and shop.