Visit: 83 Wooster Street New York, NY (Open from 5/13-5/22)
“Being open and honest is cool,”
Isadora Sales of Everlane explained in our interview, “I think that people should apply it to their everyday life – you should say what you mean, and mean what you say and you’ll probably lead a happier life.” We’re inclined to agree especially in matters of style, where Everlane is currently a leading authority in a growing movement around transparency – something that the industry desperately needs more of. Isadora and the entire Everlane team have made it a point to lay the foundation for a new kind of conversation around fashion, one that prides itself on awareness, community, and a sincere celebration of personal style. Despite being an online-only brand, Everlane has made great strides in connecting with people in an authentic and engaging way, and in the case of today’s story we were able to see the tangible impact of this firsthand, at their pop-up store Shoe Park.
Located in the heart of Soho, the elevated adult playground dons a “choose your own adventure” vibe with the intention of allowing visitors to create their own experience and enjoy the space in a uniquely personal way. Designed in collaboration with Robert Storey, Isadora contends that, “It’s almost like you’re in a museum but you can touch things and play – that’s really fun and I think it’s great for summer.” We were thrilled to have been able to explore the space with Isadora pre-opening where she shared fun facts about Shoe Park’s journey, thoughts on Everlane’s company culture and her own journey to transparency in both life and style. Without giving too much away, discover our morning with Isadora below which features exclusive photos from our visit by Bridget Badore for The Style Line. For more information on Shoe Park visit Everlane’s website by clicking here.
I’m Isadora! I work in Marketing at Everlane –
primarily in social media and affiliate marketing. I live in San Francisco but I’m originally from New York. I graduated last year from Parsons and moved to San Francisco immediately (my two best friends drove me out there!). I think I was drawn to Everlane because I loved fashion but I had this really strange relationship with it, where there was this divide… I interned at high fashion houses and in PR, I just remember being on the West Side Highway with 40lb garment bags just like crying and working fashion week where people were treating you like you were the absolute worst. So there was this huge divide between my love of the physical product and the way it was, which was very jaded, entitled and with a sense of exclusivity that was just not good! It wasn’t transparent.
I was so moved by Everlane’s mission. They had sent out an email saying that they were hiring, I saw it and I looked at the application and I was like, “Oh my god this is amazing!” but at the time I was still a senior and the application was so hard which made me question whether or not I should do it. I actually went to dinner with a friend who works in the startup world and I asked her, “Should I apply for Everlane?” and she said, “Don’t even bother – I was at this job fair the other day and there was a line at their table that was SO long. You have to focus on graduating, so just focus on that.” So I was like OK and the next day Kelly who is our Head of People at Everlane emailed me on LinkedIn! So then I thought that this was probably a good sign…
We love that Everlane brought the idea of a park into a fast-paced city like NYC. Was this a conscious decision? What do you hope this concept brings to the NYC community?
We’re online-only and I think that we wanted to test out what retail would be like if someone had to explore it themselves. Rather than having a sales associate walk you through everything, we wanted to explore what it would be like to have this sensory experience and make your own journey in the space. Robert Storey did the design of Shoe Park and it’s like this elevated adult playground, it’s beautiful, approachable, fun and playful. It’s almost like you’re in a museum but you can touch things and play – that’s really fun and I think it’s great for summer. Elevated Summer is a really big theme in our line this year and I think this space lends itself really well to that.
Generally how do you think Everlane fosters a playful approach to personal style?
I think social media has been really helpful for that. We try (on Snapchat and stuff!) to play around a lot with the pieces that we’re launching and we’ll do different styling things with members of our team – we have a member on our team who is almost like a stylist and she’ll guest star on our Snapchat stories and show us different ways to wear things.
Generally on social media people will ask us questions along the lines of, “How do I wear this?” We’ll also share posts people have tagged while wearing our clothes, it’s nice to be able to share that with our community.
What’s one question you wish people asked you more often?
I wish we were asked a little bit more about our company culture – I’m so in love with our company culture. We have such a wonderful team, so many inspiring people and our executive team is amazing, our CEO and Founder is so inspiring and smart and coming to work everyday is a joy. It’s so nice to be around these people who you’re learning so much from. There are also really nice things about being in our space with such great light. More questions about this kind of stuff would be really fun to talk about!
How do you think people can embrace more transparency when it comes to both life and style?
There’s this new trend in social media and in general, even with fashion brands we’re seeing it more and more now, transparency is in. Being open and honest is cool. I think that people should apply it to their everyday life – you should say what you mean, and mean
what you say and you’ll probably lead a happier life. I also think that applies to fashion. You should wear what you feel comfortable in, for me at least, if I don’t feel good about what I’m wearing then the entire day is shot! If you’re completely yourself and representing yourself in the way that you feel you are in that moment that’s a win-win.
Since we’re on the topic of transparency, tell us: are there are any fun anecdotes or stories that you can share about launching Shoe Park?
Well we had this beautiful floor (when you enter Shoe Park you take off your shoes!) – but for another event we were having, we had to move this entire fridge downstairs, well we were trying to anyway, it didn’t actually end up happening because there’s no way these poor people could have moved this giant fridge down a flight of stairs… so as we were trying it ripped the floor we had built! Robert Storey and my team were trying to figure something out (this was about two hours before an event we were having) and there was a giant hole which definitely wasn’t fun, but we figured it out!