In Conversation with Isabel of ISABEL SK

In conversation with Isabel of ISABEL SK: the brand who dressed Rowan Blanchard and made sustainable wearable art accessible.


Isabel SK is bold and beautiful. Loved by an array of celebrities and influencers, the Los Angeles-based brand is making moves for their vintage-inspired garments with a focus on sustainable practice. IT'S MATEREAL speaks to Isabel SK on the future of fashion, celebrity impact and how sustainability can be accessible.


What does sustainability mean to you? Why is it an integral part of your brand?


To be sustainable means being conscious of how your creations affect the environment and putting forth the effort to have as little negative impact on it as possible. When I started re-launching my brand last Spring, I felt that sustainability was a core part of the brand I wanted to build. After working for several clothing companies and brands in Los Angeles, I was thoroughly disgusted and upset by the level of fabric waste my industry contributes to landfills, etc. I wanted to find a way to put this "fabric waste" to use and started reaching out to my connections and purchasing deadstock or unwanted fabric from them. This deadstock fabric is 100% usable but would otherwise end up in a landfill, and I love that I can give it a new life.


What was the inspiration behind Isabel SK? How did it come about?


Isabel SK launched in 2013 when I graduated from Parsons School of Design but has changed a bit over the years and morphed into what it is now! My senior thesis collection at Parsons went viral overnight and my brand was born unexpectedly. Back then it was more of a high end, streetwear/sportswear brand. After working in the fashion industry in Los Angeles, I learned a lot about making accessible clothing and used that new knowledge combined with my personal style to re-launch my brand about a year ago. The current Isabel SK is all about making comfortable, cute, sustainable clothes that are just easy but iconic! Using deadstock fabric and vintage pieces gives my brand an authentic vintage inspired feel and that is 100% me so I really love that I can convey that with my designs!


Why is material and product quality important rather than mass production?


As a consumer I go for quality and authenticity over anything mass produced so I want my products to always be the same way. Ethical production is really important to me and my brand as well and often with mass production the factory workers are not compensated fairly amongst many other environmental issues caused by mass production.


What is it like being a sustainable brand in Los Angeles? Is it what you thought it would be?


It's great! I have quite a few connections within the industry here and I feel I can truly make anything here, this city is full of opportunity. It's honestly better than I thought it would be.


What was it like to see Rowan Blanchard in one of your pieces? How did it impact your brand?


Rowan is such an angel!...Totally a muse for Isabel SK. Someone with a large following posting or wearing my work always provides a nice boost of sales and followers!


Why do you think small brands are being amplified? What is the value in shopping small and sustainably?


I think people are focusing on small brands for a lot of reasons! There's a big anti-capitalist type of air about the marketplace these days and when people shop small brands, they support actual people over corporations. The value in shopping small and sustainably is quality and level of design. Often small companies have a much higher level of design and quality than large companies and I think consumers are starting to learn that.


Do you think sustainability and responsibility is something celebrities and influencers should be actively promoting?


Yes, absolutely! If everyone just did their part and made small changes our planet would be much happier. A lot of influencers and celebrities are getting better about promoting responsible consumption but there's way more work to be done!


Do you think sustainability and responsibility is something celebrities and influencers should be actively promoting?


Yes, absolutely! If everyone just did their part and made small changes our planet would be much happier. A lot of influencers and celebrities are getting better about promoting responsible consumption but there's way more work to be done!


What are your hopes for the future of fashion and does sustainability play a part in it?


I think fashion will continue to become more accessible which is so wonderful! More and more companies are being held accountable for unethical and non-sustainable production and behaviour which is awesome and will absolutely help our industry and world in the future!