What inspired you to start Maison de Mode?
Amanda: I started working in fashion 10 years ago at the magazine Marie Claire. It was there that I started to learn about the stories behind our clothes - WHO made them, WHERE they were made, WHAT they were made of - and that's when I became more interested in the ethics and sustainability associated with the fashion industry. Unfortunately, not many people were talking about sustainability and, even more frustrating, the term "sustainable fashion" had a negative connotation. So, Hassan and I decided to create a one-stop shop where people could easily find responsibly-made clothing and accessories AND see that ethical fashion is chic and luxurious.
Hassan: Amanda and I both have a passion for sustainability and fashion and were challenged with the idea of proving that sustainability could be sexy. With her editorial background and my design background we realized there was no place to shop a curated selection of designers that had ethics embedded in their core values, so we decided to launch Maison de Mode to serve a growing consumer base we knew was out there.
What other initiatives do you take part in that contribute to the Maison de Mode lifestyle?
Hassan: I have extended my experience and voice to numerous panel discussions including the 2015 NGO Conference at the United Nations, SXSW in 2018, Bloomberg Sustainable Business Summit in 2018, Future Sustainability Summit in 2019, and the Future of Fashion Summit in 2019. Additionally, I hold a position on the Board of Well Beings—an environmental and animal conservation NGO, and I am also a Member of the 2020 CFDA Fashion Awards Guild.
Amanda: I launched a charity in 2018 called Well Beings which is dedicated to animal welfare and conservation. Not surprisingly, the fashion industry has a HUGE impact on both these issues (animals + the planet) and so we've started a behavior-change campaign where people can learn about how to eat, shop, and live in a more sustainable way. More personally, I stopped eating red meat 6 years ago and am phasing leather out of my wardrobe. The cattle industry accounts for 80% of Amazonian deforestation, and by supporting that industry less, we can make a big difference!