We acknowledge the Traditional Owners of the land on which we meet and create. We pay our respects to their Elders, past and present, and the Aboriginal Elders of other communities.
Shy Hero is about embracing and celebrating women and their bodies in all their forms. Bigger, thinner, bodies that started out life as male, little boobs, big bums, no bums, soft bellies, hard bellies. We want to celebrate them all. But not in the sense of selling our bodies for gain, but recognising our bodies; saying this is woman and it is beautiful.
We are about making comfortable and beautiful clothes for women, the shy heroes of this world.
All our garments are designed, printed and hand made in Melbourne by three magical women that love to dream and create.
We are a team of three. Karina Newnham, Amy Masterson and Hilary Green. We each came together as long term friends in 2016 to begin brainstorming and combining our superpowers. We each have similar values and aesthetic taste but we also found that we each have something different and unique that has helped us build our brand. Combined we have experience in environmental sustainability, art, fashion and teaching. We intend to continue cooking up ideas together to mix playfulness and sophistication with our hope to create something that women feel proud to wear.
In our aim to make Shy Hero 'something good', we continue to consider our impact on people and the planet along the full life cycle of our pieces. As we have done this it has opened our eyes to the complexity of the world of ethical clothing. We are learning and improving every step of the way and will be open with you as we go. Read below for more information on how we do thing and what we value.
Slow Fashion is a term first coined by Kate Fletcher in her 2007 article published in The Ecologist. It represents the ideas of 'ethical' clothing all rolled up into one movement. Slow fashion is a gentle revolution which encourages producers and consumers to consider quality production, product value, and connection to people and the environment. These values definitely resonate with us.
Mainstream fashion is what you would call fast fashion. It is about mass productions, trends, and low prices. All things which sway people into buying more for less to keep up, without consideration of the cost and who ends up paying it. We aim to step out of this process; all our clothes are made to last so one piece will be loved and worn throughout trends, seasons and occasions. Only when we can step out of the world’s processes of violent accumulation can all people be respected and honoured.
Absolutely core to Shy Hero is women. We want to honour female-identifying people in all we create. We do that by designing clothes that respect people and enable them to feel and look comfortable and beautiful. We take on the responsibility of promoting our brand through body diversity, rather than promoting one way of being. Lastly we consider our makers. It’s not possible to create something beautiful without honouring the people that are part of the creation from the beginning.
All our garments are made to order (which does mean you'll have to wait a little longer for your perfect piece but trust us, it’s for great reasons). Made to order garments mean that waste is minimised as we aren't making clothes which will never be worn. We create minimal waste pattern-making so no extra fabric is lost. We even use the scraps for scrunchies!!
We make our garments to last. Which to us means trend free clothing and quality craftsmanship. We want our garments to stand the test of time and to be loved throughout seasons. However, when they've been well loved, hand down, op shopped and repurposed we also want them to be able to degrade.
Most of our clothing is made from linen which is not only good for you, it’s also good for the planet. To read more about this wonder fabric, click below. Items that include small percentages of man-made fibres are sourced from Wall Fabrics which is all deadstock fabric so we are not contributing to the creation of made-man fibres, just using those that already exist and need using up!
We make all our own packaging by using big old books we dig-up while op shopping. We sew pages from old, useless and broken books into little bags to post out all our garments. We love this idea and stole it from Bronwyn, Karina's mum, who came up with it for her own Fair Trade Store needs!
All our garments and fabric designs are made by the Shy Hero Team in their little home studios in Melbourne. We create and make quality garments and designs around other part time jobs because we love it. It also means we can guarantee no vulnerable people (generally women and children in the fashion industry) have been used for cheap labour in on or off shore manufacturing, something which is hugely important to us.
Fern Textiles supplies us with all the beautiful plain linens we use. These guys are based in Blackburn and import all types of quality fabrics from around the world. They visit all the mills in China where their fabric is made and only work with those that pay and treat their workers well because to them the quality of the fabric is better from these mills. We have received a guarantee from Fern Textiles about the mills worker standards but are working towards ways we can independently guarantee this.
Next State Print supplies us with all our digitally printed linens. These guys are based in Abbotsford. We use them as a printer as they are local and print short run prints for us. Which means we don't waste metres of fabric! Next State has reduced their environmental impact in many ways which you can read about on their website. We think its great!! They source their fabric from Eastern Europe.
Wall Fabrics are our newest supplier who provides all the other one off fabrics we use. We love these guys because they enable us to repurpose deadstock. Deadstock fabrics are the left over fabrics of fashion houses who overestimated their needs. Usually they would end up being sent straight to landfill. Wall Fabrics rescues these fabrics and makes them avaliable to other makers to use.
Notions (aka buttons, elastic, zippers thread etc.)
We purchase all our notions from small local businesses. These include:
Jimmy Buttons, 375 George St, Fitzroy VIC 3065
M.Recht Accessories, 53-57 Cambridge St, Collingwood VIC 3066
Sewing Accessories, 306 Barkly St, Footscray, Victoria