Meet the Maker: DEGEN
The Endery’s latest collaboration is a partnership with our dear friend, Lindsay Degen! Much like The Endery, Lindsay’s namesake label, DEGEN, focuses on creating products in ways that are ethical and sustainable. With vibrant designs gracing apparel, homewares and more, Lindsay has channeled her unique style into a powerhouse indie brand. Lindsay has designed a capsule collection with The Endery using 100% deadstock cotton, produced by our artisan workshop, Green Design Link. Pieces from the collection will be available exclusively at DEGEN’s e-shop. To learn more about Lindsay and her work, read our Q&A below.
The Endery: Tell us about yourself.
Lindsay Degen: My name is Lindsay Degen and my brand is called DEGEN. DEGEN is a craft-based lifestyle brand that celebrates making things the slow way, by hand. I have been knitting and making things my whole life – I find that crafting keeps me in the present, and finishing a project makes me feel accomplished and proud. Hand made items also feel more special and tell a story. I want to help tell that story.
TE: How did you learn to knit? How does knitting help you?
LD: My grandma taught me to knit when I was very young. Since then it has always been a thing to keep my hand busy, calm my nerves, and focus. Like most knitters, I find knitting relaxing. It’s a metaphor for life – just take it one stitch at a time and enjoy the process.
TE: Tell us something interesting about yourself that most people don’t know.
LD: People find it interesting when I reveal that I was a high school varsity cheerleader?
TE: How was the lockdown for you?
LD: Lockdown has been challenging because getting together with friends is the reason we all live. It’s important to share, give, listen and get the same in return. Also laugh! Those things are hard to do in lockdown. It is so tragic with all of the loss of life, although I think that lockdown created a perfect environment for change. The USA is in need of reform. But besides those world-level outcomes, I have been more able to spend time making (which I love – but it comes at a major cost).
TE: Tell us about how your collaboration with The Endery came about.
LD: I love the ethics behind The Endery. The perfect collaboration is one where you share ideals. I really wanted to get back into making garments that my community could fall in love with, but also did not want to contribute more waste into this world. Because The Endery uses all deadstock yarns, it felt like the perfect union.
TE: Why do you think collaboration is important?
LD: I just love collaboration. I see collaboration as the future. Take what I’m really good at, pair it with something that someone else is really good at, and you get a better thing in the end that you couldn’t have done alone. I just love that. Look out for many more collabs in the near future!
TE: How did you go about translating your designs into deadstock yarns and what kind of challenges did you meet along the way?
LD: First I designed the ideal sweaters, not really thinking about what yarn was available. Then when I received the list of available yarns, I just tried to make it work! The Wavvy Sweater is set up to work well with deadstock because you don’t need a ton of each color and it’s somewhat easy to replace colors and get the same effect. The YUCK Sweaters were more of a challenge since the body is one solid color. The most difficult part was definitely when I thought I had figured out the puzzle of what sweater got what color, but then sometimes that yarn was then already being used by the time I was ready for it! It’s an exercise in flexibility.
TE: And finally, do you have any tips on using waste creatively?
I think you can easily make beauty from waste, as long as you frame it for yourself as an important challenge. It’s necessary to make from waste, so we have to try to do it.
Shop the DEGEN X The Endery collection.
All Photos: Courtesy of Degen:
Creative direction: @Markfina
Art Director: @carlyaltieri
Makeup Artist: @_virginiayoung_
Hair Artist: @mischag
Design Assistant: @novvaks_knits