Greenwich native launches online fashion brand

Clothing racks bursting with sweaters, tunics, pants and fur coats fill the spare bed room in Jillian Schwabe’s Stamford condo. Her front room typically doubles as a catwalk, the place shoppers mannequin fashions from the Greenwich native’s newly launched brand Mon Ami.

The moniker interprets to “my friend,” which Schwabe, who labored in Paris’ fashion business for a number of years, believes sums up her new enterprise’ mission.

“I can count on my friend to dress me well and help me express myself through clothing,” Schwabe stated throughout a current interview at her house workplace. “Mon Ami is someone you can count on.”

A couple of weeks in the past, Schwabe and her enterprise companion Marsen Mogielski debuted their online-based retail brand with a fashion present on the Hyatt Regency Greenwich that includes a variety of native ladies.

“She’s the kind of girl who’s all or nothing,” stated Greenwich native Alexandra Umana, who modeled within the present. “It’s been awesome watching her make her dream come true. I was honored she asked me to be a part of it.”

Effortless stylish

While rising up in Greenwich, Schwabe lengthy aspired to make it huge in fashion. She acquired an curiosity in each the enterprise and fashion features of the cut-throat business. “I balance business and creativity,” she stated.

Schwabe plastered her childhood bed room partitions with fashion editorials and inspirations, similar to Cher, and located consolation in styling herself in a variety of attire. “Fashion makes me feel like a chameleon,” she stated. “It’s my creative escape and a confidence booster.”

For years, Schwabe has refined her fashion, which prominently options bodycon garments, duster jackets, and high-waisted skirts. “Everything has to have a touch of character,” she stated. “I like to be comfortable but chic in a way that looks effortless.”

In 2014, Schwabe adopted her fashion ambitions to Paris, the place she ran showrooms for New York-based corporations. She recounts her work there fondly and jokes about associates calling her the “dream killer,” a nickname she earned for mentioning flaws of their enterprise plans to launch fashion manufacturers.

According to Schwabe, the collection of terrorist assaults throughout her tenure in France, together with the November 2015 shootings and bomb blasts that killed and injured lots of, harm the capital metropolis’s fashion business.

“Paris is the epitome of fashion — it’s the mecca,” Schwabe stated. “But the terrorism hurt fashion week. People didn’t want to come there, and my family was begging for me to come home.”

Fashion for all varieties

With remorse, Schwabe returned to the United States earlier this yr and located a job working in retail on Greenwich Avenue. She used the chance to increase her understanding of the marketplace for quite a lot of fashions and, by the top of the summer time, she acquired her first funding to start Mon Ami.

Around the identical time, Mogielski, a fashion photographer, videographer and artistic director at Social Life Magazine joined her as Mon Ami’s artistic director. His work is seen on Mon Ami’s web site with all of the brand’s product photographs.

One of the featured models, Carol Borges, additionally walked in Mon Ami’s Greenwich launch occasion and lauded Schwabe and Mogielski for his or her number of clothes choices. “I’m always in SoHo hanging around the jazz clubs and looking in store windows, and everything looks the same,” Borges stated, who’s a musician and scholar in New York City. “Other brands pick what’s most in trend and go with that, but I think this is on trend but unique. It was neat seeing at the show how the brand fits so many different styles and type of women.”

Greenwich native Jessica Rosa, who met Schwabe via household connections, feared collaborating in Mon Ami’s fashion present due to her curvy physique form, however stated Schwabe knew simply how one can type her.

“When I saw the other girls, I got panicked and told Jill ‘I can’t do this,’ but she told me I would do fantastic, made sure I had clothes in my size and when I went on stage I felt like a million bucks. I’ve never felt so confident in myself.”

Representing many types and varieties is an emphasis of Mon Ami, Schwabe stated, and she or he plans on persevering with to function models of all sizes. “I wanted to break barriers by bringing in a variety of models,” she stated.

Eventually, their brand might embrace garments for youngsters and males, Mogielski added.

For now, the pair plans to maintain the majority of their enterprise online since “that’s how our generation shops,” Scwhabe stated, however she is going to proceed to type shoppers in individual by appointment and hopes to schedule some pop-ups.

Contact the author at; Twitter @Macaela_

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