The John Taylor label started in 2019 with a passion for the positive power of sustainability, inclusivity and timeless design in the fashion industry and its impact on mindless consumption. My approach is to make clothing that will endure through the years – in quality and style.
From the beginning I have been connected to nature and art. I grew up on an orange grove in Florida spending my days outside with my dog, creating art, swimming in lakes and the ocean, and selling hand squeezed orange juice from our land. I never cared much for school and found my satisfaction in the outdoors and creating things with my hands. At the age of 11 I had to say goodbye to the land. I began a new chapter of life going to various boarding schools in the Northeastern United States and losing myself entirely among the harsh winters, enforced structure, and focus on academics. University was the last thing on my mind and I spent two years traveling, working on boats, and backpacking. My creative reawakening happened when I traveled through Baja, Mexico - sleeping on isolated beaches and traveling by sailboat, foot, and kayak for 3 months. After that I moved to Missoula, Montana to study Anthropology where my journey into ethical fashion quietly began.
My background in ethical fashion goes back to 2009 as a founder of a sustainable eyewear company whose frames were handmade from responsibly sourced American hardwoods and eventually bioplastic (made from renewable plants) as a response to plastic frames. I left the company to focus back on nature and the ocean. Upon my departure I began planning an expedition to row across the Pacific Ocean from California to Hawaii along with 3 others - no sails, no motors, relying only on human power - collecting water samples for microplastic research for Adventure Scientists Organization and water composition studies for NASA's Aquarius Project, contributing to a better understanding of the earth’s climate system. While on the open ocean for 58 consecutive days we faced hypothermia, massive swell and storms, hallucinations, up close whale sightings, hatches flooding, being thrown out of my oar seat by a rogue wave, vertigo, dehydration, insomnia, and the most beautiful sunsets, sunrises, stars and moon phases you could imagine. What I found the most inspiring and disturbing was seeing plastic trash floating by every day at sea. Experiencing how little I needed in life on this boat and all of the trash I had seen floating by inspired me to join a movement to disrupt our current relationship with consumption and inspire positive change in all aspects of creating.
About a decade ago, during a long Montana winter I taught myself how to hand make surfboards. As I needed to store them somewhere safely, I taught myself how to sew - creating surfboard socks from fabric scraps. I have been mending and altering my clothing since.
The vision for John Taylor was conceived while in Europe visiting an art school in Italy that I was planning to attend. While traveling and observing style and design in France and Italy I was reading The Responsible Company by Yvon Chouinard, founder and owner of Patagonia and Vincent Stanley, co-editor of Footprint Chronicles. This was the first inspiring thing I had ever read regarding the apparel industry. Before reading, I had a dismal perspective on the environmental and ethical practices of the fashion industry and did not think real change could happen without greenwashing and contributing to the overconsumption crisis. After that trip I have been on a nonstop mission to consciously build the John Taylor label as a responsible company. I'm now on a mission to create clothing that you can live in while on your journey through life and inspire a dialog around our relationship with consumption.
I value sharing an authentic vision with the world and creating responsibly. I believe the best way of life is living full heartedly in the present moment - connected to nature - and that life is truly an art.
I am immersed in every part of the brand's creation process and work directly with my sewing team. Each decision on fabric selection, color, design and the production process is made with an eye toward sophisticated comfort and looking good in your wardrobe now and forty years from now: iconic clothing made to be passed down across generations.