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OK, STORY TIME!

My story begins in the outback of Australia...

I was heading to a new home in Western Australia, and to get there, I had to drive thousands of miles across the desert. I was sleeping in the back of a beat-up Nissan Pathfinder and living with only the clothes I could fit in my trunk. During that time, I reflected on how my path was impacting the earth; the gas I pumped into my car, the food I put into my body, the clothes I wore on my back.

I started to think about how my love of fashion could be sustainable. Shopping secondhand was an easy way to try new styles on a backpacker's budget, while also reducing my carbon footprint. 

My dream of a Vanshop started forming. I wanted to encourage others to think about where they buy their clothes and promote out-of-the-box alternatives to fast fashion. 

I moved my travels to New Zealand and spent the first few months road tripping in my new van and treasure hunting in thrift stores. Pretty soon I had a large enough collection of secondhand clothes to start selling at markets and festivals. Ooey Gooey Vanshop was officially born! I installed a clothing rack in my van and opened up shop wherever I went, whether it was a beautiful beach with good waves or the parking lot I slept in the night before. 

With a blooming business and two years of traveling behind me, it was time to come home to California. The pandemic was in full swing by now and I was back in my childhood bedroom, inspired to create a silver lining to this sad situation. My dream began to shift when my Grandma gifted me her old sewing machine. I had a new idea for a handmade sustainable garment line...

Sophie Poukish

 

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