Their mission is “to source eco-friendly fabrics and to produce quality garments that are sustainable in both manufacture and design, without sacrificing on style.” COSSAC is no ordinary fashion label. As they state on their site, “Our garments will be your tool in making the ethical statement offering more sustainable and environmentally friendly alternatives to the often wasteful fashion industry; we want to start a change in the way people perceive fashion and want to promote more responsible and conscious consumer behaviours.” We met up with Agata, founder and designer for COSSAC, learning more about what she and the brand stand for.
StartupCatchup: Please introduce us to your venture COSSAC.
Agata: My name is Agata and I’m the founder and designer for COSSAC. I have been working as a fashion designer for five years, both for high end and high street brands in Spain, Turkey and now the UK. COSSAC is my first solo project.
The COSSAC brand represents conscious design; we embrace the idea of sustainability, promoting womenswear clothing with a lower environmental impact.
From a perfect timeless white tee to eye catching statement pieces, we have created a sleek and stylish collection that adapts to the latest fashion trends yet stays ethical.
Our mission is to source eco-friendly fabrics and to produce quality garments that are sustainable in both manufacture and design, without sacrificing on style.
Our garments will be your tool in making the ethical statement offering more sustainable and environmentally friendly alternatives to the often wasteful fashion industry; we want to start a change in the way people perceive fashion and want to promote more responsible and conscious consumer behaviours.
StartupCatchup: How did you come up with the idea and what made you actually take action and go for it?
Agata: I always wanted to have my own brand but I wanted it to be different from others on the market. I love fashion design and the impact it has on society (and vice versa) is very interesting for me. Fashion is very responsive to all the social and economical changes. That was one of the reasons why I decided to start a sustainable fashion brand.
I strongly believe in sustainable future: economy and design. I believe that slow fashion is the future of high street. I think it’s the time when people are more and more interested to know the origin of the products they buy (fabrics and manufacturing process), their impact on the planet and their own lives. It’s a great time for a eco-friendly, affordable, yet stylish fashion brand to enter the high street.
StartupCatchup: How many people are currently working on the project and who are they?
Agata: Curently it’s me (Agata); I design the collection and make all the critical decisions;
Sydney, our social media guru who is in charge of promotion and advertising; it’s thanks to her that more and more people talk about and support COSSAC
Andrew, our amazing graphic and web designer
We also work with few manufacturing factories in India, the UK and Turkey.
StartupCatchup: How are you funding the project?
Agata: So far the COSSAC is self-funded but as we are expanding and have big plans for future we decided to try Kickstarter and we will need to get loans and/or investors on board soon. You can view and support our Kickstarter campaign Here
StartupCatchup: What are your plans for the business and what do you hope to accomplish?
Agata: We want to promote slow fashion and educate customers to make responsible buying decisions; we want to be the pioneers and spark that ‘little fashion revolution’ that will change the face of the high street.
Plans so far are to have two main and two small collections a year. We want to collaborate with fellow artists and other brands and in the near future we would like to get involved in education – promoting sustainability among younger generations.
StartupCatchup: What has been the most rewarding experience so far on the journey?
Agata: We launched just over a month ago but the response so far has been very positive. There were a few amazing articles written about COSSAC (The Fashion Globe, Sasstainable, Emma Waight, Holistic Editor) and the support that everybody shows us gives us strength to continue working hard. It’s amazing to see that people believe in your mission and are grateful for what we are doing. We recently published our own blog to thank all of our supporters.
StartupCatchup: What, if anything, would you have done differently looking back on the journey now?
Agata: There were few obstacles on the way (delayed deliveries, cancelled appointments) but overall we have dealt quite well with everything; we have a great experienced team and we work together on everything.
I think the most important thing is to be humble and continuously educate ourselves about sustainability, fair trade, business in general, etc. Right now it’s too early to pinpoint mistakes but in a few months we will be able to see what (if anything) went wrong and we will make amendments accordingly.
StartupCatchup: What would you advise others who have an idea but simply don’t know where to begin?
Agata: In every business you want to start you need some background knowledge in the field you are interested in. For example, if you want to be a fashion designer, ideally you need few years experience in the field and if you don’t have the time, at least do some evening or weekend courses and remember to constantly educate yourself. Remember you never should stop learning. And of course…you always need a good plan…there will always be amendments to it but good planning and organisation is the key.
StartupCatchup: Can you give us a quote that motivates and inspires you to keep going?
Agata: It’s actually a quote that inspired the ‘Time is now’ tee from the AW14 collection.