Story By Trysten Evans
Photos by Sophia Bain
The vintage clothing industry has undoubtedly seen a shift from purpose to aesthetic over the years as a result of big fashion companies focusing on selling for profit. Despite this, MamerSass Reinvented Fashions stands out by dedicating themselves to bringing people authentic redesigned vintage while also significantly reducing the fashion industry’s carbon footprint.
MamerSass offers their customers complete transparency with their eagerness to share their mission with their customers. The thrift brand prides itself on their sustainability. Co-owner and designer of MamerSass, Jamey Brittingham, studied Fashion Design and Art at Radford University, and later moved to New York to work in the trimmings business. There, she saw first-hand how much product goes into the fashion industry and how much waste comes out of it as a result. Inspired to be different, Jamey, alongside her partner Derek Garrett, materialized a fashion-thrift line that follows an “all of the buffalo” philosophy meaning that everything they deconstruct gets used.
Dedicated to lessening the demand for new clothes and minimizing fashion waste, they have completely eliminated their paper and plastic trail by giving their customers shopping bags made out of t-shirts, instead of paper or plastic. Any remaining fabric from the bag pattern gets used to make their label tags and their business cards.
Customers seeking to browse their inventory have a plethora of items to choose from. There are four racks stocked outside with all of your favorite fall-season needs like jackets, overalls, and sweatshirts. Inside, the walls of their repurposed bus are lined with t-shirts, blouses, and shorts. In addition to the racks that literally overflow with options, there are still bags full of jackets for sale, not to mention a table full of accessories.
Each of their items are not only thrifted, but one of a kind. The MamerSass design team takes nearly every item of clothing that they have, and finds a way to re-invent them using materials from other pieces.
Two of MamerSass’ big themes are salvage, and imagery. Vintage army jackets from the 60’s have been redesigned with the graphic front of an Eminem t-shirt sewn on the back, and men’s collared shirts from the Y2K style have been re-silhouetted to be worn as off the shoulder dresses.
MamerSass will even redesign customer submitted t-shirts into “collage-hoodies” that are guaranteed to be unique and sentimental. The brand aims to be inclusive with the sizing and style of their garments while also maintaining their beachy-bohemian, streetwear roots, with the addition of personalized fashions, they are sure to have something for everyone.
MamerSass Reinvented Fashions spent all of last week parked under the sun, in the parking lot of the VCU Dance Building. Why? Because their brick and mortar store, (originally based out of Chincoteague Virginia), is only openly seasonally. Due to it’s location on the main strip of a small island, the store’s customer traffic usually comes from young visitors during the warm months.
When the store is closed, MameSass loads up its “shop on wheels” with merchandise and hits the open road, bringing all of their eclectic and sustainable pieces directly to their consumers. So check out the magic bus next time it’s parked on somewhere on campus, you won’t regret it.
MamerSass College Tour Dates
10/3-10/5 Radford U
10/9-10/11 Virginia Tech