My name is Van Hoang and I design, sew, and create everything you see on the site. The cliff notes version is I love coffee, shoes, and puppies. I love exploring different cultures through food and travel. And, my favorite food is Pho hands down. I could eat it any time of day, every day for the rest of my life and be happy.
Photo by Jon Morgan Photography
The rest of this is the longer version of my story. I come from a large family of seven and am originally from Viet Nam. We immigrated over to the U.S. when I was four years old and settled in Knoxville, TN where I grew up. Throughout my childhood I was always in love with art and constantly sketching. I would hoard crayons, drawing supplies, and paper from wherever I could find it. A fond memory that comes to mind is one of my art teachers in elementary school would give me extra paper and supplies to take home so I could practice, something I was always grateful for.
I attended O'More College of Design and got my B.F.A. in Fashion Design and Merchandising. Afterwards, I went on to show at Charleston Fashion Week as a semifinalist in the Emerging Designer Competition as well as Nashville Fashion week. However, I was still unsure what I wanted to do. The more and more I learned and looked into the fashion industry the more superficial, harmful, and wasteful it seemed to me. What was the point of creating more clothing when there was already so much waste in the world, and at what cost? The fashion industry is one of the world's largest polluters, not to mention the ethical labor issues such as sweatshops in third world countries. Why should people care about a fashion show that costs thousands of dollars when there are millions of people struggling just to survive.
This realization compelled me to learn more about sustainability and what we could do to reduce our environmental impact. I decided to go back to school to pursue an M.A. in Design for Sustainability at Savannah College of Art and Design. I wanted to find a way to do what I love, but in a more responsible and ethical way. To begin to do this I had to change my perspective. Clothing isn't just a thing. It can be a powerful tool. It can make you feel empowered, happy, confident, anything you want! But, instead of just caring about the end product I learned how to look at the whole system in a holistic way and see where positive changes can be made.
I'm not going to lie, there is still so much I don't know and I'm sure I will make mistakes along the way. Every step on this journey has been a learning process, and I will try to be as transparent as possible with you all. As I move forward I hope you will join me in revolutionizing the fashion industry one small step at a time by being more mindful and conscious about our impact. I can't wait to see what we can accomplish together!