Morgan Young Wants to Rebuild Your Jeans
It was an ordinary day on the campus of University of Delaware when the idea of AndAgain was born. Morgan Young, an apparel design major, already knew that the fashion industry was intertwined with complicated social justice issues. It was not until attending a sustainability fashion panel at the university that she realized the environment was also suffering greatly from the high, unsustainable demand of fashion.
“It all started when I thought to myself: ‘Everyone loves jeans. What if we could design them better?” said Morgan. It’s a closet staple, always high in demand and it has incredible room for improvement in its environmental impact.
She was not wrong. A study conducted by Levis when accessing their own sustainability revealed that a pair of Levi 501® jeans uses 3,781 liters of water in its full lifecycle – from growing cotton, through manufacturing, consumer care at home and end of life disposal. Seventy percent of the water consumed is from the cotton production stage alone. (Read more about their sustainability findings and goals here.)
Morgan approached her friend Greg Harder, a marketing major, who had an instinct for fashion marketing. They decided to explore jeans that were better for the environment without sacrificing style.
And that is exactly what they did.
AndAgain was born in September 2016 when the duo created the first few pairs of handmade, 100% up-cycled jeans and sold them to fellow classmates. Together, Greg and Morgan scoured thrift and vintage stores to source jeans on the edge of being tossed into the landfill. They purchased these jeans, re-cut, sewed and designed a completely new pair with the addition of unique elements like fresh grommets or distinguished patchwork.
“Being on a college campus I think that biggest motivator for my peers is cost, but personally I am willing to buy less things and save for items that are better quality. I think that’s the future.”
Morgan Young, co-founder of AndAgain
“We really focus on creating something that not everyone has, something truly one of a kind, so you to have a great reason to make that purchase,” said Morgan, now a college senior. “Being on a college campus I think that biggest motivator for my peers is cost, but personally I am willing to buy less things and save for items that are better quality. I think that’s the future,” she said.
In addition to choosing from seasonal styles of jean skirts, pants and jackets, AndAgain offers a unique personalization opportunity where the shopper can design their own pair of up-cycled jeans directly from the retail site. One can choose their own size, style, embellishments, fringe, cut and wash.
“Personalization was implemented because I don’t want to look like anyone else!” Morgan exclaimed when asked what inspired her integrate unique technology into the brand. “We are evolving the platform, but it allows us to really deliver what the customer wants directly to them.”
A self-proclaimed minimalist, Morgan find herself at odds with the fashion industry she is a part of and her awareness of the waste it creates. By producing AndAgain, she aims to be a part of the larger shift to more conscious consumerism and help extend the life cycle of garments that are already existing.
A little over a year after launching the company, the next stage of AndAgain is already in full swing. Shoppers can now purchase AndAgain in two Philadelphia-based retailers, Downerss Boutique and M Concept Shop as well as Revolve in Boston and Ethereal Boutique in Canada. Morgan and Greg plan on adding more designs on a consistent basis, especially in the jean jacket category, as well as adapt their personalization technology. Lastly, they hope to soon embed social enterprise into their business model, giving back to the communities that need help the most.