HUMAIN THE BRAND + SLOW FASHION: a talk WITH CAROLINe GARELL

HUMAIN the brand is a fashion label with a clear mission: to change the meaning of fashion industry through slow-fashion. HUMAIN is calling people to take into consideration the value and charisma of sustainable fashion; it is essential for communities to value the conservation of our planet and society in the modern and future eras and take into account what may be harming it. HUMAIN the brand is giving clothes and its people a second life.

The topic of sustainability in the fashion industry is reaching new heights. Now, brands, influencers, and even heads of multi-million dollar companies are growing to understand the importance of protecting the environment and the people in which live within it. Due to the high demand of products at cheeper prices and the invention of the assembly line, consumerism grew at a great deal…but with risks. Not only are detrimental chemicals used in the production of our garments, harming us, the environment, and the people who are making the clothes, the use of cheap labor results in inhumane working conditions factory workers globally.

‘We take it as our responsibility to do our part in cleaning up the beauty of nature around us while still maintaining the allure of fashion.

HUMAIN the brand

Caroline Garell, founder + CEO, does what an ordinary super-designer does in sustainable fashion, create fashion-changing garments through various sustainable techniques, but she also does so much more. HUMAIN the brand is not just one person; it is a body of people: mankind. The beauty of the individual is accented with the construction of the garment. The fashion industry this day and age is in need of nurture and care.

For HUMAIN specifically, its garments are made out of recycled or eco-friendly textiles and fabrics, making HUMAIN a sustainable clothing brand. HUMAIN is here to display and maintain the mystique of the world and its people through its garments. HUMAIN is calling people to take into consideration the value and charisma of sustainable fashion; it is essential for communities to value the conservation of our planet and society in the modern and future eras and take into account what may be harming it. HUMAIN the brand is giving clothes and its people a second life.

– caroline garell, founder + ceo of humain THE BRAND

And it would be hard to find someone who has done more to apply an artist’s thinking to running a creative business for humans: #humainforhumans !

A TALK WITH CAROLINE GARELL | founder + ceo of humain the brand

Describe yourself as a designer and how HUMAIN THE BRAND was born? 

HUMAIN the Brand was born in August of 2018. Growing up in such an entrepreneurial family always gave me the motivation to create something of my own and bring something new to the market. Becoming more enthralled with fashion and sustainability, I thought to create more of an accessible sustainable streetwear brand focused on local manufacturing in Los Angeles, California. I would describe myself as a designer who focuses on elevated minimalism while subtly incorporating trends into my designs and garments.

How do you manage the creativity process exactly as it’s really challenging to design slow fashion garments?

I bounce off ideas that randomly come into my mind that I would wear myself and jot those loose ideas in the Notes App on my phone. From there, I meet with my graphic designer, Natalie Minguez, on multiple occasions to develop and fine tune designs. I try to perfect my garments to act as a staple and versatile piece in my customers’ wardrobe. The stress of constantly launching new products to the market can be overwhelming at times, however, I believe sustainable production will adhere to more benefits in the long run. 

What was the first job of your life and how did you land that position before launching HUMAIN THE BRAND? 

My first “job” I had was interning/assisting for a LA/NY based celebrity stylist Jaclyn Fleurant. I landed this position with her through the website www.freefashioninternships.com where I sent in my resume and cover letter, having little experience in the fashion industry. It was a miracle that she took me on.

What was the biggest rookie mistake you made when just starting out?

My biggest rookie mistake I made while just starting out was not doing enough research on what platform to create my website and selling channel on. The platform I initially started with was great, but very mediocre on the commerce side of the business. This ultimately pushed me to make the leap to creating a whole new selling channel for my brand on a different platform. 

What’s the main impact of social media in the fashion industry in both ways, fashion buying and brand marketing?

I believe social media opens up a new marketing channel on a high coverage rate. It is way more accessible to reach international markets by interactions on various social media platforms, helping a brand gain more awareness and recognition in places it typically would require more resources to do so. It is transforming the way brands communicate and operate.

What is your favorite and NON-favorite part about being part of the slow fashion industry?

My favorite part of being a part of the slow fashion industry is being a part of the initiative and movement to restore ethics back into the industry. The downside would be facing the conflicting pressure from the industry to always produce something “new” and compete with the fast fashion brands for visibility.  

Imagine that you must write a letter to your FUTURE SELF. What would you write?

Find the balance between following where the market is going and your intuition. Be able to decipher where you should focus your abilities and when you should ask for help. Good things take time, so trust the process with your focus on consecutive little goals rather than expecting a big accomplishment to come out of nowhere.  

Can you tell us how your brand makes a difference in sustainable fashion industry?

HUMAIN the Brand is making a difference in the fashion industry while actively promoting inclusivity and sustainability into streetwear brands. The brand is building ties within its community of Los Angeles to focus on local production and champion sustainable streetwear in a more affordable fashion.

What do you think is the biggest challenge for the brand right now?

The biggest challenge for the brand right now is working through the unknown due to COVID-19. The industry is being shaken up and HUMAIN is trying to configure its place in the new marketspace.

Define sustainable in five words.

Durable, versatile, disruptive, ethical, progressive.

How do you think HUMAIN THE BRAND can expand worldwide and which is the right market, in your opinion, for the brand right now?

HUMAIN is actively trying to expand worldwide currently. Right now, HUMAIN does ship internationally to the EU and UK, but has plans to expand worldwide in the near future. In my opinion, I think the market of young Millennials and those a part of Generation Z in both America and Europe are the right markets for HUMAIN right now.

What do you think about the opportunity of selling your collections online nowadays? 

Selling by the means of e-commerce is one of the grounding aspects of HUMAIN. The brand was built to be DTC through an online channel, keeping the intimacy of a relationship with the consumers and taking a more sustainable approach to reaching more selling channels domestically and internationally.

What happens to that part of a production that does not get sold? 

The part that is not sold is still kept and for sale on the website until purchased. No garments are thrown away.

What is the long-term mission of the brand? 

The long term mission for HUMAIN the Brand is to actively foster more inclusivity to the fashion industry, produce sustainable streetwear and promote the art of fashion in the whole creative of the brand.

HUMAIN the brand is not just one person; it is a body of people: mankind. The beauty of the individual is accented with the construction of the garment. The fashion industry this day and age is in need of nurture and care. For HUMAIN specifically, its garments are made out of recycled or eco-friendly textiles and fabrics, making HUMAIN a sustainable clothing brand. HUMAIN is here to display and maintain the mystique of the world and its people through its garments.

HUMAIN is constructed of all recycled/deadstock fabrics. Our sweatshirts in particular are all 52% recycled cotton & 48% recycled polyester. In the manufacturing of the sweatshirts, there is a focus on energy, water, and waste reduction. With our manufacturer, the dye machines save gallons of water and minimizes landfill. The production of the garments is entirely done within the U.S., spotlighting California. Only our tie-dye is taken care in New York, New York, with the rest of production in Los Angeles, California.

Moving on to the dying process of the garments, we use water-based ink that neither contains PVC nor phthalates. We also use fiber reactive dyes, which are low-impact dyes that use less chemicals and salt than traditional dyes do. Due to being an e-commerce brand, HUMAIN minimizes the use of energy than what would traditional in-store retailers produce. From the makeup of our garments to the hang tags, HUMAIN tries to implement the most eco-friendly option.

HUMAIN THE BRAND

”It is essential for communities to value the conservation of our planet and society in the modern and future eras and take into account what may be harming it.”