October | Take 5
With Re/Done's Sean Barron
The Re/Done co-founder on accidentally creating a much-loved global brandEmma Sells
In 2013, vintage devotee Jamie Mazur pitched his friend Sean Barron an idea: what if you could take pairs of vintage Levi’s and tailor them to fit women on a large scale, offering up incredible jeans that cut out the need to rummage through piles of denim and track down a good tailor. “I said this is a great idea but it’s not possible at all,” says Barron, a fashion industry veteran who previously founded brands including Joie. The pair spent nine months trying, and failing, to nail the perfect fit before finally cracking the code. And eight years later, Re/Done has evolved from a side-project into a much-loved global brand that has repurposed more than 100,000 pairs of jeans to date, as well as launching its own denim shapes, each inspired by a deep-dive into a different decade.
Although the Los Angeles-based label was built around upcycling from the get-go, sustainability wasn’t something that was initially a consideration; the focus, instead, was on scarcity, exclusivity and storytelling, and on partnering with American heritage brands, elevating their clothes to truly desirable, luxury status. But it became apparent within months that their reusing ethos was something that really connected with their customers and they took the decision to make responsible choices across every element of the business going forward.
"I can tell you that we put our best efforts into everything that we launch and we’re always learning, evolving and developing."
Sean Barron, Co-founder and CEP Re/Done
This month marks the next step in that journey. Along with 50 other brands, Re/Done has joined The Jeans Redesign, the Ellen Macarthur Foundation’s project to champion circularity within the fashion industry. With that in mind, it’s working with Denim Village in Turkey to create its most responsible denim to date, ensuring that their jeans will be long-lasting, biodegradable under the right conditions and made from 100% organic cotton. “Anybody who’s really involved in this kind of stuff knows we can’t tell you we’re 100% sustainable, it’s impossible,” says Barron. “But I can tell you that we put our best efforts into everything that we launch and we’re always learning, evolving and developing.”