As the designing force behind Yana Dee Ethical Apparel, Yana is constantly seeking new sustainable fabrics to add to her dreamy studio. Yana's studio is filled with carefully curated, environmentally friendly fabrics from near and far, old and new. However, the availability of fresh eco-fabrics sometimes leaves something to be desired, especially in terms of patterns (or perhaps it is simply the case that Yana has an unquenchable thirst to work with amazing fabrics.)
At any rate, in the Spring of 2021, Yana started putting her finger on exactly what was lacking in her timeless classic clothing collection. That finger landed directly on a dot. Actually, it landed on a lot of dots. Polka dots, to be exact. Yana decided she needed to make polka dot dresses to sell in her store and website. Abby (Yana's sister, store manager, and writer of this fine article) agreed whole-heartedly that making Polka Dot Dresses was a most excellent plan indeed.
From whence the polka dots came
The problem was, sustainable polka dot fabric was simply unavailable. No such print could be found on organic cotton (or other similarly earth-friendly fabric.) Luckily, we had the commercial connections to have a sustainable polka dot fabric custom printed for us. Before we could have polka dots made for us, we had to decide exactly how big the dots would be, how far apart, and in what pattern. We briefly entertained different colors as well, but a white dot on a black background was quickly decided to be the most classic and timeless version of a polka dot, ever. In July of 2021, we were talking about dots a lot. Big dots, little dots, dots as big as your head. Dots as small as a pin point. After many vision boards and mock-ups, we finally decided on a polka dot pattern we could commit to.
We decided to have our Polka Dots printed on 100% Organic Cotton Sateen. (Yana Dee fans have felt this silky-smooth fabric before in the colors Lovely Lavender, Peony, Kaleidoscope, and Jungle Grrrl.) We ordered this fabric through a company that works directly with farmers in India. We feel that bringing organic cotton business to India is so important, because conventional cotton growing in that area is quite terrible. (If you want to learn more about the real price of fast fashion on people and the planet, watch the documentary The True Cost.) The organic cotton used to make this new polka dot fabric was grown, milled, spun, and finally printed in India. We are excited to share with you a video of the printing process for this very fabric.
Now... what to make?
Finally, the dotted fabric arrived at Yana's studio. Next, Yana had to decide exactly what to make with it. We had sew much fun talking about what our first Polka Dot Dress design would be, and finally decided that a circle dress (a-la-poodle-skirt) would be the best place to start. So that's what Yana Dee and her incredible seam team made. Yana decided to start with two bodice options (lined yellow, or single layer black) and make matching dresses from kids size 6-18 months, through adult M/L.
After the dresses were made, we managed to sneak in a photo shoot on the nicest day Traverse City has seen so far this spring. And now, just in time for Earth Day 2022, Yana Dee's Polka Dot Dresses are released into the world! Introducing the Kit Dress (yellow bodice) and the Dottie Dress (black bodice.) Our starting accessories from this phenomenal fabric are scrunchies and simple headbands, which were delivered from the studio to the store literally moments ago.
Here at Yana Dee Ethical Apparel, we are truly giddy to be bringing exciting, sustainable new clothing into the world. We balk at the idea that earth-friendly clothes need to be bland, boring, or boxy. We all get dressed every day, so it might as well be a joy! Making and selling new fun, flattering, and earth friendly clothing is part of our purpose here on planet Earth. We thank you, dear customer, for helping make our dreams come true.
Current Polka Dot Products from Yana Dee:
- Polka Dot Headbands
- Pretty Scrunchies
- Dottie Dress (Adult)
- Dottie Dress (Junior)
- Dottie Dress (6-8 Years)
- Dottie Dress (3-5 Years)
- Dottie Dress (1-2 Years)
- Dottie Dress (6-18 Months)
- Kit Dress (Adult)
- Kit Dress (Junior)
- Kit Dress (6-8 Years)
- Kit Dress (3-5 Years)
- Kit Dress (1-2 Years)
- Kit Dress (6-18 Months)