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Fashion with a twist: Introducing U of Meg

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Keep in mind thrift buying? Nicely, classic clothes is again in type. A brand new style model launched in Toronto, U of Meg, picks up on the development and affords college college students a likelihood to precise their college pleasure and individuality.

Megan Chong, a Rotman commerce scholar on the College of Toronto, turned her love of style into a enterprise through the COVID-19 pandemic by beginning her personal clothes model specializing in personalized college merchandise. 

“I rework genuine college merchandise,” she stated. “I both purchase stuff from the bookstore or I thrift gadgets and I rework it and make it my very own.”

Chong launched U of Meg final yr. The pandemic gave her free time to discover the concept, which got here to her after she walked into a class and noticed three individuals sporting the identical navy U of T sweaters.

“I like it, however I believe we are able to do one thing higher,” she stated. “I used to be like, ‘I believe it will be cool if I may rework or tie-dye one thing simply to make it a little cooler.’”

Chong stands exterior of the College of Toronto on Aug. 13, 2020. Chong has created a sustainable clothes model that includes personalized college merchandise through the pandemic. COURTESY MEGAN CHONG

Chong shared U of Meg at a pop-up on the Duke of York in downtown Toronto final December. She additionally markets her items on social media. Her ardour mission then sparked into a rising enterprise with greater than 53,000 likes on TikTok and 4,500 followers on Instagram

“My first drop was 20 tie-dye T-shirts, and I used to be anticipating that to final me your complete month of June. I offered that out inside 24 hours,” she stated.

For Chong, sustainability has at all times been a high precedence when designing items, significantly by incorporating reused supplies into her items. U of Meg goals to convey that sense of college pleasure in an eco-friendly approach.

“I’ve been thrifting since I used to be in Grade 8,” Chong stated. 

“I’m a enormous believer in sluggish style and simply shopping for for what you like moderately [than] a development. Additionally, in shopping for good high quality, not solely one thing that you simply like, however one thing that you simply’ll put on for a few years.”

The clothes line’s followers purchase that philosophy.

Custom-made sweatpants worn by the proprietor of U of Meg.  COURTESY MEGAN CHONG

“U of Meg is completely different as a result of her items are one of a sort sort items. Whereas supporting a fellow scholar, we additionally symbolize our college,” stated Megan Cambruzzi, who purchased one of the model’s tie-dyed T-shirts final summer season.

The enterprise displays an general drive for extra sustainable items amongst gen Z customers.

“Quick style makes thrifting a lot more difficult as a result of the clothes are so cheaply made that they collapse earlier than they’ll return into the thrift economic system,” Mark Joseph O’Connell, a style professor at Seneca School’s college of style, stated by way of e mail.

“A client want for a sustainable style product is a excellent factor. These tendencies have really compelled many adjustments in trade.”

As a younger entrepreneur within the style area, Chong’s profession in design is simply getting began. 

U of Meg has already grown to develop into greater than Chong ever imagined and allowed her to expertise new issues and see her dream alternatives come to life.

“I believe the very best factor is assembly so many cool individuals. I’ve been in a position to join with so many various college students and other people throughout Ontario. I by no means thought I’d have such a sturdy group despite the fact that we’re all at house as a result of of COVID,” she stated.

“When COVID is over, I hope to do extra pop-ups and collaborations. I simply love assembly individuals so hopefully I can get to do this in individual as effectively.”

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