THE “SEED” THAT PLANTED IT ALL
Once upon a time (as in like, four years ago) in a land that’s probably not even that far away from wherever you are, in a “magical” midwestern town called Columbus, Ohio (ew) a girl fell in love with the process of natural dyeing. If it’s not obvious, that girl was me, Camille.
I had a wonderful, petite, passionate, Russian teacher by the name of Irina who would mystify me with tales of her days spent foraging around the woods in Russia for things to dye fabric with. My heart fluttered every time we dipped strips of silk, cotton and linen into pots of madder root, onion skins, black beans and osage. The colors ranged from rich and spicy to soft and romantic. Somehow they all felt so very human to me.
I became incredibly close friends around the same time with a beautiful young woman by the name of Katie. Katie’s passion for sustainability and the earth were fantastically contagious. She made it so fun and cool to truly care about the earth while also educating me about how important it was to protect the world through our shared passion.
As I worked through school I would find myself thinking about my own closet more and more. I felt so strained getting dressed. I would buy a few garments, ultimately dislike them, and feel as if everything I tried to wear didn’t fit, didn’t feel comfortable, and/or just didn’t feel quite my style. Growing up shopping as a plus size girl it seemed like the only two options I had were to dress like someone double or triple my age, or gothic (neither of which felt true to me). It felt so ironic to be a young woman chomping at the bit to get into design school but who just couldn’t get dressed. Everything I designed was never with my own needs in mind. I was sketching, patterning, designing and thinking about fashion for thin girls who simply weren’t me. I had never really given myself permission to design for myself. I didn’t realize that I was my own most frustrated and most deserving customer. With this in mind, I turned to everything I loved. Beautiful, good quality, natural fabrics, fantastic construction, easy comfortable shapes, and best of all- natural dyes. After a stent of working for amazing small and big businesses and being surrounded in my career by women who have such strong sense of conviction and creativity, I felt so inspired and finally ready to engage with my own ideas.
Today, Perennial exists to serve women of all shapes and sizes with the clothing I myself never knew I needed until I finally made it myself! I hope you will also be the tool that eases your own frustrations, and whether you’re along on this journey with me for a moment or a lifetime, I hope something here resonates with, and gives you something you may have not realized you needed all along.