The dynamic duo behind Plante Clothing is sister act Leah and Becky Plante, and will be debuting their Fall 2014 collection at Charleston Fashion Week. Their romantic, sweet, and vintage tinged designs reflect a whimsical world of soft fabrics and feminine shapes. Leah and Becky’s roots are right here in Charleston, but their label is based and produced in New York. Their Eco-conscious efforts and educational awareness are met by reducing waste and donating extra material to educational nonprofits. Read more as Leah and Becky Plante share their process, inspiration, and why they love Charleston.
What is your design aesthetic? Natural, feminine, fluid, and understated. We want to design things that are easy to wear but unique, sweet, and novel.
Is there a particular designer/designers that have inspired you? Of course! Vena Cava, Proenza Schouler, YSL, and Chloe.
What is the concept behind your current collection? A Midsummer Night’s Dream! But for Fall 2014.
When designing a garment what do you think of 1st? Color, silhouette, form, function, customer, ect. Silhouette comes first! From there we decide what fabrics we want to use and what the line needs to be complete.
What is the dynamic when you design with your sister? Leah: I respect Becky’s opinions more than anyone else’s, so I love working with her. There are so many tense times starting a business; I don’t think I could do it with anyone else besides Becky. And we like pretty much all of the same things ever (food. movies. tv. all!), so we rarely have creative differences.
Becky: Leah and I have always loved doing projects together, and this is our biggest one yet. Our division of labor is very intuitive, because we know exactly what each other’s skills and interests are. However, while our closeness has really simplified the collaboration process, we still work very hard. I actually think working as a duo has made us work harder than we would have if either of us worked alone; we’re not just striving toward our personal goals, we’re both supporting our sister!
Where do you like to keep up on what’s going on in fashion – magazines, blogs, ect. and which ones? Leah: For inspiration I love reading lifestyle blogs like Cup of Joe and Reading my Tea Leaves. I check the most recent shows on Style.com, and I try to shop around and check out boutiques as much as possible.
Becky: I do enjoy keeping up with style blogs (Sea of Shoes is one of my favorites)! Leah and I also follow all of our favorite designers, boutiques, and bloggers on Instagram. I feel like this gives us updates on whatever is hitting the runways and racks in real time. Technology is so great.
Do you have a style icon? Leah: Mermaids! Becky: Audrey Horne from Twin Peaks!
What are you most excited about for CFW? Leah: Showing our collection in our hometown! The last time I went to CFW was as a high scool senior. It was the CFW’s first year ever, and I was set on showing in it someday!
Becky: I’m so excited to experience Charleston during the festivities! We grew up in Charleston, but in the past few years, I feel like it’s become an even more vibrant, fun city, especially during fashion week. I can’t wait to explore all the new restaurants, shops, and events!
What do you think about Charleston? Leah: I love Charleston! We both want to move back and relocate our brand to Charleston in the next few years. It’s so beautiful, the people are lovely, and the landscape is unlike anywhere else. The city is like magic to me! Plus you can’t beat the weather– especially compared to New York!
Becky: I think it’s a magical place. Downtown Charleston is full of churches, cobblestones, graveyards, and and colonial houses; sometimes it feels like going back in time. But then there’s such a fresh, thriving shopping, dining, and art scene as well! It’s the best of both worlds.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years from now? Hopefully we will both be working full time on Plante (right now we have other jobs in order to support ourselves and the line as we launch). We would love to branch out to intimate apparel, and eventually (this might be in the 10 year plan….) we want a brick and mortar store that sells clothes, accessories, and flowers!