Designer and serial business founder Mychael Owen is, at long last, doing what he was born to do. Mychael has created a super-sustainable clothing brand with ‘Best in the World’ credentials, a brand determined to change not only how we buy and wear clothes – but how we live our lives.
One morning, out of the blue, Mychael realised his entire life was upside-down. Such a tiny amount of Mychael’s time was spent with those who mattered most. Doing what mattered most. Work was top priority. Family, friends and fathoming life’s purpose were bottom priority. So Mychael turned his life the right way up.
“As I sat there one morning, worrying about workload, my mind for some reason wandered to this huge hand knitted cardigan I had as a boy. I remembered how it hugged me. How it always made me pause. It slowed me down. I craved that calm, contented and carefree childhood feeling again. That switched-off, downtime feeling.
And I wanted to inspire other people to take more downtime, too. So I thought to myself – what if, because of knitwear I created, more people at the end of their lives said, ‘I’m glad I did’ rather than ‘I wish I had’? Now that would be something.”
The Best and Most Sustainable Hand Knits in the World.
“I’d been searching. For years. And I still couldn’t fathom who made the best and most sustainable luxury hand knits in the world. So eventually, I thought – fuck it – it may as well be me.”
Mychael now heads up Always Wear Red, the world-kind ‘Best Hand Knits in The World’ clothing brand, with a growing global customer base – and an authentic brand purpose close to his heart.
Sustainability is an integral part of the Always Wear Red approach. To Mychael, it is everything.
”I am entering a business where 90% of the clothes we all buy – we don’t wear regularly. 30% of all clothing created never reaches a market because it is considered unfashionable. And over 70% of all clothing is burnt or buried within 3 years. The world does not need another ordinary fashion brand. So I created an extraordinary clothing brand. We create – slowly – something wonderful. Our mantra is, ’Wear it. Share it. Repair it.’
’Wear it’ because it is irresistible. ’Share it’ because of our unique gender neutral pattern. And ’Repair it’ because you adore how our hand knits become yours over time. They wear in – not out.
Always Wear Red is for people that no longer want to be part of the problem.”
Do One Thing Well.
The story of Always Wear Red hand knitted jumpers and scarves is amazingly detailed. With 20 years’ experience as an international award-winning furniture and brand designer, Mychael added to his design-and-make credentials by spending 4 years working with the UK’s best clothing makers, using the world’s best materials. He explored many clothing categories before finally focussing on doing one thing really well, the thing that accelerated the journey – hand knits.
Always Wear Red hand knits are classic, seasonless British designs that last. Simple, iconic designs that stand out. No-wash to save time, money and the planet. One, world-class, antimicrobial ingredient – up to 3kg of 100% Italian Merino in every jumper. Genderless so made for sharing. Tiny batches and pre-order so zero waste. Just 300 are hand knitted in the UK each year. Labels are woven from commissioned artwork by Finnish artist Erica Akerlund. And each piece is hand numbered and signed by Mychael in the order it is made. All knits is priced between £345 and £1,695 (1% goes to ‘1% for the Planet’) and Always Wear Red promise to buy back, refurbish and resell any piece, no matter how old it is because, as Mychael says,
“The best leather. The best denim. The best hand knits. They wear in – not out. We should wear, share and repair clothes. And yes, what we look like says something about us. But how we decide what clothes to buy and how we treat our clothes says much more. That is what sustainability means to me. Looking beyond the piece. Back along the journey that brought the collection to life.
And any time anyone asks why something beautiful and considered and unique costs so much, I suggest a much better question to ask – of low cost alternatives. Ask not why something is so expensive – ask why something is so inexpensive. The answers to these questions are far more shocking.
Always Wear Red ’traps’ value into the collection because our markup is many times less than other luxury brands. We are not making the most hand knits we can, we are making the best and most sustainable hand knits we can. Slowly. That is our purpose. We want to change you. So ordinary is no good – only extraordinary can do that.”
About the Designer – Mychael Owen:
Endlessly creative as a child, Mychael is a furniture designer/maker, graduating from Northumbria University in 1990. In the 7 years that followed he ran an award-winning design-and-make business and worked at Universities and Enterprise Agencies helping businesses to start and scale. In 2000, aged 30, Mychael launched the first of 4 much larger design, brand and marketing agencies, leading them to win 70 awards around the world. Restless, Mychael closed them all in his mid-forties and now focuses on designing for and leading Always Wear Red. Mychael lives in Northumberland with partner Lisa and daughter, Izzy
See all Knits and buy: www.alwayswearred.com