Designer Interview

By: Fashwire
Nov 22, 2021 03:21 PM

What is the earliest design memory, or ‘aha’ moment you recognize with Reistor?

I think it was when a customer sent us feedback saying that our hemp garments felt like ‘butter’! It was such an eye-opener for me, that sustainable fashion doesn’t have to be a certain way, but can be as good if not better than conventional fashion.


“We believe that conscious fashion can be creative, affordable, beautiful, and comfortable.” 


What is your daily dose of inspiration for creating, running, and believing in your brand?

We believe that conscious fashion can be creative, affordable, beautiful, and comfortable.


Could you share with us a little bit about Reistor’s focus – of reducing environmental impact (REI)?

Reistor contributes to reducing environmental impact by using sustainable fabrics and working with local communities. All our garments are made from 100% hemp, the buttons on the garments are either made from coconut or wood and we use 0 plastic or elastic, even the threat used for stitching is organic cotton. Our packaging includes reusable cloth bags and home compostable courier bags.


 What are the unique & sustainable fabrics you use to create your product line?

We chose to create our debut collection from 100% hemp due to how sustainable and eco-friendly it is. Hemp is also naturally anti-wicking, anti-microbial, breathable, and lightweight making it a great choice for us. Hemp uses 92% less water than conventional cotton and lasts longer. It gets better with each wash and honestly, once you try it on, you’ll be surprised at how soft and luxurious the fabric feels.


What was your previous work experience before launching your brand?

I started my fashion career with my family business, creating designs for the textile markets in Southeast Asia. In 2017 I launched my first label, Phera, with contemporary designs for South Asian bridal parties, in the US.

My co-founder and brother Harjas Singh has spent 20 years in the fashion business, from product development and research to sales development across the globe. From customers in the USA to China, Harjas has served several niche markets creating and curating fashion fabrics and apparel. He is also actively involved in Blue C Scrubs, another D2C medical uniform venture launching in early 2022.


How do you define the word ‘sustainability’?

For us, sustainability is about being mindful about your consumption habits – whether this is fashion or food, sustainability lends itself to the notion that “more” and “faster” isn’t always better! We are aware that fashion cannot be 100% sustainable but we believe in approaching fashion mindfully. When it comes to making decisions regarding our materials and production process, we continuously ask ourselves how we can do things better along the way while keeping our community and our planet as top priority.


Could you tell us a little bit more about your colour palette and how it is related to your brand story?

Our colours include soft pastels that set the right mood for the brand. The idea is to make our customers feel relaxed and comfortable in our garments and we felt these colours did just that. For us, each garment is a mood, and we wanted our customers to really connect with that. For example, the She’s Everything blazer is a twist on the traditional blazer silhouette, giving it less structure and a more relaxed fit. When you put on this blazer, we want you to feel like you can take on the world! Like you’re everything you need and then some.


What do you envision for the future of your brand?

Our vision is to move toward a more sustainable way of life, and we hope that Reistor is a part of that journey for many people. We plan to experiment with more natural, sustainable fibres as well as exploring menswear and home decor.


“Reistor is two words that we created, Rei which stands for Reducing Environmental Impact and Stor which links to the idea of a marketplace or community.”


 What is the story behind the name of your brand, Reistor?

The name is a play on the word Restore, which has the same pronunciation, because for us it was about restoring the environment and hope. Reistor is two words that we created, Rei which stands for Reducing Environmental Impact and Stor which links to the idea of a marketplace or community.


What are your thoughts on living a sustainable lifestyle, not limiting to simply buying sustainable fashion?

I truly believe that there is so much we can do, people assume you need to completely change your lifestyle to live sustainably but this isn’t the case. Making small, everyday changes such as reconsidering your cleaning products, beauty, and wellness routines and even the food you eat - there are many sustainable alternatives in every sphere of life, we just need to move toward those that work best for us.


What can your loyal customers expect to see next from your brand?

We wish to push out another collection in hemp by next year but in the meantime, customers can expect smaller drops in various other fabrics that we are experimenting with; all of which will be functional, yet fashion forward.


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

We assumed that customers were as interested in sustainability as they are in fashion. That customer is quite a small segment of the market and very niche. Our job has now become more about educating our customers about the importance of sustainability and how easy it is to make smart choices.


What is your favourite fashion film or show?

I am really looking forward to House of Gucci!


If you could visit one place in the entire world, where would it be and why?

South or east Africa! It’s surreally beautiful and totally unexpected. It’s so close to nature yet offers tons of activities as well, I loved my time there.