ORDER FROM DISORDER
Just came across this really cool editorial/ interview of Disorder, it is a good read,nice to see things from a different perspective sometimes. We all get so wrapped up with what we are working on we can't see the wood for the trees..
ORDER FROM DISORDER written by Victoria Halliden 29th April 2016
Imagine you could up your expectations when it comes to shopping, forget the high-street and its penchant speed and focus on experience instead. Where would such a directive take you? Vogue magazine is betting it would be Disorder boutique, stating “if there was a list for the world’s best independent boutiques, Disorder would surely be on it”.
Disorder, in Birmingham, is the antidote for fast-fashion, an art gallery and a creative hub all fusing to create a fashion emporium for men and women. It’s as much about the visual treat as it is about the clothes, forget shopping as you know it, Disorder seeks to offer an experience for all who enter. That experience is so on-point that The Guardian cite it as “one of the top five reasons to visit the city”.
If we try and stay focused on the clothing (and, trust me when I say it’s hard to separate the blend of art and apparel as the two seem to exist together as one entity) you’ll see that Disorder is a boutique with a difference, in that, clothing is largely own-label. The proprietors of Disorder design and manufacture all their own-label clothing in Birmingham, using British fabrics and all prints are original artworks, designed in-house. The signature is an Italian tailored cut, with oriental styling, and a British twist; giving Disorder an inconceivable edge that is exported around the world. Such a step away from the mass-production model that everything remains strictly limited edition.
The founders of Disorder aren’t afraid about keeping it personal to them, clinging tightly to the belief that if you build it, they will come – they go as far as to reference the space as their own “private art installation”. In fact, the husband and wife team have held tight to their vision since their University days (where they first met). Setting up Disorder after graduating as a place to reflect political ideas, while taking the principles of entrepreneurship from lecture theatre to practice. Above all, the couple sought to put their vision of sustainable design into practice. Let’s remember that this was 1998, pre the ‘Primark Boom’ that was looming right around the corner, and which would provoke a change in consumer mentality and the rise of the slow-fashion movement. In 1998, the ethos to be conscious, ethical and sustainable was (and in many ways still is) ahead of its time.
Owner, Mark Howard, proudly describes Disorder as a safe haven in a chaotic world and takes inspiration from similar paradoxes in the world. Growing up with undiagnosed dyslexia, Mark sought solace in art and design but was too anti-establishment to pursue an art career and met his wife, Thiri, on an Anthropology/Politics degree course. Thiri grew up in Italy and had a similar passion for design, and so these two souls fused together to form a place that is directional in design, conscious of its supply chain, and kind to its customers. A space that is so unique that Mary Portas, brand consultant to the Government and Apple, has deemed it as one of the “cleverest” and “best” shop brands she has seen in years. It’s important to communities that such spaces exist, providing a shopping experience that fulfils the owner’s passion and drive while meeting (nay, succeeding) the needs of the customer. It’s a co-dependent relationship and one that each party need to foster and support, as Mark states “as long as there are brave, creative people in the city, there will be independents. But without the amazing support we get from our customers we would not exist.” Boutiques teach the community important lessons about achieving dreams and breaking the mould; we simply need to open our eyes and walk in. And when you do. . . .be brave, push the boundaries that define your usual apparel shop, submerge yourself in someone’s dream and see how richer a sense of heritage makes your shopping experience. Here are OneChicMom’s favourite picks (also available online):