Wabi-sabi, a traditional Japanese concept that centers around the acceptance — even embracing — of imperfections, lies at the core of minimalist clothing brand MisterMrs. And when married founders Sharlene and Brydon Gerus decided to open their Santa Monica storefront last month, it also served as an inspiration for the new space.
MisterMrs was created to be a sustainable wardrobe option, first and foremost. There are capsule collections for both men and women consisting of four pieces (a jumpsuit, jacket, pants, and tee) and other modern basics that were designed to be worn for years to come. This means buying — and wasting — less overall, but the Geruses also source Earth-friendly fabrics and have items made ethically in small batches by artisans in Mexico City, which adds to their lowered carbon footprint. In a world of "fast fashion," what they've created is consciously slow.
The Geruses were just as mindful about the other pieces they selected for their recently opened Santa Monica shop, like Patrick Johnston ceramics, local artwork by Monica Perez, jewelry by Nini Banger, and tie-dyed socks by Kathryn Herman, in addition to their own all-black essentials (which range from $80 to $282) and limited-edition collaborations.
"The misterMrs store is where you go to for beautiful handmade local gifts from very talented local artists," Sharlene Gerus tells UncoverLA.
In celebration of the store opening, we chatted with the founder and owner to learn a little more about why created "slow fashion" was so important, where their love for Japanese aesthetics started, and why they're so excited to offer their customers an in-person experience. Read that and more ahead.
What does slow fashion mean to you — and how does it factor into your brand and store?
Slow fashion is a huge part of misterMrs in that we do not go by the seasons but instead go with the weather and mood of our clients. We are able to cater each wardrobe with what is happening in the world. That is why we have just released our cozy work-from-home items for the Mister and Mrs.
Can you explain how misterMrs takes inspiration from the wabi-sabi concept?
Since our visit to Japan and visiting the zen garden, we have been very fascinated by Japanese aesthetics. We really appreciate the beauty in the imperfect, incomplete in nature and we take that same approach while designing and hand-making our clothes in that each piece will be a little different from one another and we appreciate its imperfections.
What are some of your favorite pieces to wear now and how do you style them?
I'm obsessed with our new square neck sweater with matching cropped sweatpants. It's my new uniform and I wear it all the time! Not only is it very comfortable, which is a must, but I don't feel like I'm dressed down in them when I pair them with some locally made jewelry and some heels or trainers. I'm good to go from work to dinner!
What excites you most about having in in-person shopping space?
The people! Being able to meet and connect with our customers in person! Having an online platform is amazing but I have learned there is nothing quite like starting a conversation in person and really getting to know your customer and creating a relationship which is priceless and something that I have missed and love.
MisterMrs, 3001 Main St., Santa Monica, 90405; Tuesday to Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m; (310) 895-5847