We had the good fortune of connecting with Fletcher Kasell and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Fletcher, we’d love to hear about how you approach risk and risk-taking
Fashion and most creative fields for that matter are full of risk. Without risk taking, how would we evolve? At Tanner Fletcher, we think about risk as a must. It helps us to learn what works, what doesn’t and helps to form new ideas and trends. Sometimes, risk gets uncomfortable but we like to say, that you either love something or hate something. We are fine with either because it means we’re creating something new that pushes boundaries. We would say that risk is a big part of our design process. We often design crazy, risky things and either edit them down to be more wearable or leave them as is. It all balances out in the end. I don’t think we would be able to design good fashion without taking risks.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
Our art is creating fashion. Wearable art. Further than that, we love creating the full world of Tanner Fletcher. From art directing every photo shoot, styling all the looks, curating our social media, creative directing our shows and events to slowing adding home products, handbags, shoes, accessories, we want our world to be recognizable to anyone who steps foot in it. This is something that sets us apart from others. Additionally, we are set apart by the fact that Tanner Fletcher is genderless and seamlessly merges home and wardrobe.
I am most proud of the fact that Tanner and I built this brand from the ground up. In order to start up the business, Tanner and I would buy and resell designer clothing to raise the funds we needed to not only live but to start Tanner Fletcher without having to also be working another job at the same time. While this took a lot of time, we found it helped us to stay humble, find inspiration in vintage clothing and become familiar with fabrics and techniques in fashion.
I am most excited about being a genderless brand. Genderless fashion has become a sort of buzz word in recent times, however, we cut through that by being different and authentically ourselves. It comes from a need in the market that we saw first hand. Tanner and I have always shopped between the men’s and women’s departments for our personal wardrobes. We have gotten our fair share of looks shopping in the women’s section and we were sick of it. It’s time that everyone sees that all fashion is for whoever wants to buy it. We do not need to place unnecessary labels on clothing that limits a certain audience from buying it.
It certainly has not been easy getting to where we are today and we are still working on climbing the path to success. Both Tanner and I come from small towns in the midwest so as you can imagine, it took a bit to get from there to showing at NYFW. We both interned in NYC and immediately decided we needed to move here full time. We transferred schools and continued to gain experience in interior design and fashion by interning. The pandemic hit right as we were about to graduate and interview for “real” career jobs. Unfortunately, that path was no longer available as kids fresh out of school with little experience during a global pandemic. We then decided to do our own thing and sell handmade totes and what we like to call “covid ware”. Once stores began to pick us up, we saw that this was more than just a side hustle so we quickly devoted all our attention to the brand and morphed it into what it is toady. We certainly had our fair share of challenges along the way such as financial hurdles, convincing customers and buyers that genderless is the new way to approach fashion and it is here to stay, as well as having to balance work and home life as a couple, living and working in the same apartment. I believe we overcame and are overcoming those challenges by staying positive and staying true to ourselves and our vision. This could double as a lesson we’ve learned along the way. Stay positive, stay true to yourself, trust your gut and show the world your vision. Just follow your dreams! Whatever you’re dreaming up, make it happen. Do what you need to do.
Overall, the world should know that Tanner Fletcher is here to stay and there is a lot more where that came from. Follow us on instagram and keep up with our we grow and evolve.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Tanner and I love to do NYC luxury on a budget. The secret is that nobody will know you’re on a budget.
We would start the day with coffee from Win Son Bakery which is right across the street from our apartment in Williamsburg. Then, we would put on our best outfits, make it a look, and hit up all our favorite thrift stores like Beacon’s Closet, Crossroads and even Goodwill. Hopefully we would find something special for a fraction of what it originally costs. Then, stop at a market and grab some snacks or charcuterie for lunch (don’t forget some wine). We would take that up to Central Park and have a beautiful picnic. We like to bring a vintage quilt to sit on and always bring a candle for some ambiance. Once it starts to get dark, we’ll pack up and walk down 5th ave. If we’re feeling it, maybe stop into the Gucci store to see the newest collection we can’t afford. It may be intimidating being in such an expensive store, but our looks are top notch and we’ll ask for a bottle of water so they take us more seriously. Then we can browse the beautiful selection at our leisure. Maybe try on some sunglasses and sample a fragrance or two. After that, we’ll head to the King Cole Bar at the St. Regis hotel and splurge on a $20 cocktail. By then, we’ll be ready to head back to Brooklyn!
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Tanner and I always say that we are so lucky to have extremely supportive families. We did not start Tanner Fletcher with formal design training, lots of connections in the fashion industry or a financial base / major financial contributions from our families. We show up to our business with extreme passion because we have both had to work very hard to get to where we are.
Luckily we were able to do that because our families have always encouraged us to follow our dreams and have supported us in every way that they are able. We recently had our first fashion show last February where our family truly stole the show. I had editors, influencers, buyers, etc. coming up to me at the event saying that they met our family. It really takes a village and in our case, our village is our family.