While made-to-order clothing isn’t anything new (up until the mid-to-late 20th century it was the norm) we’re seeing a growing list of designers slowing down the pace of production. From luxurious deadstock silk-cotton blend shirts to everyday trousers, brands are offering made-to-order items that are both practical and stylish and will liberate you from trend culture.
Making clothing only as and when it’s ordered also helps solve many of the fashion industry’s problems: the unfeasible fast pace, the extravagant amounts of textile waste and the poor quality of garments that aren’t designed to last. It’s also a model that challenges the industry’s inclusivity issues, often offering a wider range of sizing options. Some brands will even allow you to give custom measurements to make sure the piece is perfectly tailored to you.
Let’s not forget the element of individuality made-to-order clothing offers too. There’s something special in knowing that a piece was made specifically for you from quality materials. Which is why you should expect to pay a little more for these garments, but it’s well worth the investment.
So, ready to add a made-to-order piece to your wardrobe? Here are six brands making it easy to score that special piece.
Documented By: @l.e.studio_
Looking for something effortlessly cool that you can wear to the beach and then out to date night? LE Studio's two-piece sets fit the bill. Throw the All Terrain red shirt on after a swim or style it up like Olivia Culpo with tailored pants and heeled boots (or down like Hailey Bieber with a pair of jeans and sneakers). Founded by New Zealand designer Lucy Edmonds, LE Studio creates exclusively made-to-order garments in deadstock fabrics, from breezy cottons to lavish silks.
Documented By: RIISE
If you’re looking for elevated basics to fill the gaps in your wardrobe, A.BCH will deliver. Whether it’s a classic shirt or linen trousers, each piece created surpasses trends and seasonality. “We are more focused on making a style that someone would have in their wardrobe forever,” founder Courtney Holm says. While block colours are A.BCH’s signature, so is the fact that everything is made locally in its company-owned circular factory. Each garment is made from biodegradable or recyclable materials, and, to ensure it never ends up in landfill, A.BCH offers a take-back program to repurpose, reuse or responsibly discard it.
While A.BCH doesn’t run solely on a made-to-order clothing model, a lot of its products do: like the chambray unisex button-up that you can share with your partner or the short sleeve shirt with boxed sleeves for Jeanette Madsen’s ultra-cool open shirt vibe.
Documented By: @dominique_healy
If you’ve never seen Dominique Healy designs before, picture big beautiful sleeves, oversized shapes and lots of comfortable fabrics like linen and luxurious Japanese silks. Each floaty blouse, maxi dress and bias cut skirt has a feminine aesthetic – perfect for summer or that dream tropical holiday you have planned.
The majority of Dominique Healy’s pieces are made at the label’s in-house studio, with the remainder manufactured in an accredited local factory. By maintaining a large proportion of production in-house, founder Dominique has the ability to produce small runs per style that would usually not meet factory production minimums. As only a small number of garments per style are produced from the outset, Dominique moves to a made-to-order model once initial stock levels have sold out, leaving her with little to no excess stock at the end of season.
When designing, Dominique also endeavours to create patterns using as much of the fabric as possible to reduce textile waste. One of her staple designs, the Bella Blouse, uses approximately 95 per cent of the fabric when cutting.
Documented By: @jordynhrose
madre natura is one of those brands you don’t just tell your closest girlfriends about, but also your partner, brother, mum, aunties and maybe even your boss. It’s because it makes garments which are both gender-fluid and neutral, suiting a range of styles, body types and ages. Made locally in Sydney, the investment pieces are designed to be paired with existing wardrobe favourites to ensure regular wear – making them perfect to pad out your capsule wardrobe.
Marking a promising move to a more circular economy, complimentary alterations and repairs are offered with each purchase for life. Plus, to lessen its impact on the environment, each collection consists of limited or small runs and made-to-order pieces like the Cycad Turtle Neck Knit (a trans-seasonal staple).
The brand has also partnered with One Tree Planted and is committed to planting one tree for every product produced (not just sold), laddering up to its overarching goal of becoming climate positive by 2023.
Documented By: @unikspace
Sift through any of our wardrobes and you’ll find a few UNIKSPACE pieces hanging front and centre. Made using 100 per cent natural fabrics – silk, hemp, linen, cotton – the elevated pieces are simplistic and undefined by seasons or trends (so you’re sure to have them on constant rotation for a long time).
The exclusive use of natural fabrics and a sleek, minimalist aesthetic have been imprinted in UNIK’s DNA since the brand launched in 2018. Since then it has also introduced a made-to-order model for customers that are either after a size that’s sold out, or after a size outside of its size range (both smaller and larger). “Even though this is quite a time-consuming process for us, it’s a very rewarding service to offer to those clients wanting to find their perfect fit,” co-founder Elin Marcic says. While it is dependent on fabric supply and, as it grows, may not always be viable, right now UNIK has a pretty “unique” set-up.
Documented By: @innes_lauren
OK, strictly speaking Innes Lauren swimsuits aren’t what you traditionally think of as “clothing”. But considering we plan to wear them with shorts and pants and under dresses all summer long, we’re adding them onto this list.
Inspired by slow-living and island pace, Innes Lauren was born out of a desire to create timeless swimsuits which are sexy and stylish, yet supportive and functional. “They’re sort of designed as a second skin,” founder Innes Heywood says. Each swimsuit is created in Sydney using ECONYL, an innovative Italian fabric crafted from regenerated ocean waste, and on a made-to-order basis to reduce the amount of waste it produces. Celebrating incredible craftsmanship, these are the kind of swimsuits you imagine seeing on celebs, but in fact can be made for you.