Delphine Gennisson, the French-born fashionista and Colorado-based Wardrobe Designer built Upparel to be the antithesis of the fast fashion industry who creates and orders more fabrics than it will be used, and abusing more people than we will ever imagine.
Most of the fabric for large retailers is ordered for a season and whatever is left over and unused after "the season" is thrown away or are sometimes being resold to what she calls "the deadstock market". Delphine buys all of her fabrics there and give it a second chance by creating new garments. This is by definition the process of "Upcycling" which inspired her to call this company "Upparel".
The company ensures working conditions are healthier for its employees in India and that they’re paid a fair, living wage, in addition to providing healthcare, childcare and other benefits.
Delphine calls it Fair Fashion. “It’s about fashion, the environment and people.” she says.
It’s a natural evolution for the 30 years old entrepreneur. She grew up in Vichy, France, always loved fashion but couldn’t always afford the latest trends. She frequented consignment shops and thrift stores and soon discovered that hunting for great finds was akin to a game. Says Delphine: “My mother was always put together and told us we could look good while still being thrifty. I hate waste in general and found my style by mixing new pieces with even more vintage second-hand pieces. For me, it totally makes sense to develop a new line Upparel with discarded fabrics that I could reuse.”
Delphine went on to study marketing at the University Blaise Pascal in Clermont-Ferrand in France and then came to the United States to learn English. She eventually met her husband in Eagle, Colorado. After working at small fashion boutiques in the Colorado ski town of Vail, she became a wardrobe stylist to shoppers teaching them what was worth to buy or not. She was never pushy she said and would rather hear her clients say “I wear this so many times already and can’t thank you enough” than anything else. More intimately, she went through clients' closets, and build as many outfits as possible including belts, shoes, scarves that usually get dust and never get worn. Soon after, she launched a larger, fruitful business as a Wardrobe Stylist for commercials, brands, photo and video shoots.
Delphine searched for a way to bring real change to the fashion industry, and to make an impact globally. Upparel does it all, bringing together designers in Colorado and employees in India to create an Earth-friendly, people-friendly clothing line.
Upparel’s flagship line is children’s, reflecting designs rooted in patterned prints and happy bright colors— a theme that Delphine says reflects the joy of childhood. Upparel provides also men and women’s clothing, something that Delphine wants to develop more in the coming year.
Sustainable - It's about the ENVIRONMENT.
It is by definition "meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs."
All our fabrics are chosen consciously. We are proud of reusing discarded fabrics from larger retailers for making new designs, and being part of the solution in the fashion industry. Upparel's garments are all handmade at our Himalayan Tailoring Center in Dharamsala, North India. We strive to produce high-quality garments for a competitive market while maintaining good working conditions, fair pay and high employee morale.
Ethical - It's about PEOPLE.
It is by definition "an umbrella term to describe ethical fashion design, production, retail, and purchasing. It covers a range of issues such as working conditions, exploitation, fair trade, sustainable production, the environment, and animal welfare."
All our garments are made in a happy and respectful environment. To see all of our actions, click here.
Fashion - It's about CREATIVITY but not only.
It is by definition "a prevailing custom or style of dress, etiquette and socializing."
It's the best place to be creative and it is also the best place to raise awareness for sustainable and ethical causes. Now, do you see the beautiful circle we are creating by making a definition on all of this? This is UPPAREL.